Books Young Adult Fiction Feedback (Variant #2)

Feedback (Variant #2)

http://www.yabookscentral.com/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x275s/2d/92/f5/_feedback-1347750168.jpg
 
0.0
 
2.7 (3)
770   0
Author(s)
Publisher
Age Range
13+
Release Date
October 02, 2012
ISBN
978-0062026101
Buy This Book
      
Benson Fisher escaped from Maxfield Academy's deadly rules and brutal gangs. The worst was over.

Or so he thought.

But now he's trapped on the other side of the wall, in a different kind of prison. A town filled with familiar faces. People from Maxfield who Benson had seen die. Friends he was afraid he had killed.

They are all pawns in the school's twisted experiment, held captive and controlled by an unseen force. And while Benson struggles to figure out who, if anyone, can be trusted, he discovers that Maxfield Academy's plans are darker than anything he imagined—and they may be impossible to stop.

User reviews

Average user rating from: 3 user(s)

Already have an account? or Create an account
Overall rating 
 
2.7
Plot 
 
2.7  (3)
Characters 
 
2.7  (3)
Writing Style 
 
2.7  (3)
In my experience, Second Book Syndrome is a serious entity in the reading world. Sequels are rarely as good as what came before; I don’t know why, but it’s true. Feedback by Robison Wells is one of the few books in my experience that outdistanced its prequel. I was a bit tentative about starting this one, but Robison Wells really brought it all together for me here.

One of my biggest complaints with the first book in this series, Variant, was how suspiciously similar to Veronica Roth’s Divergent it was. Both novels were released within a few weeks of each other, back in 2011, and it was just a weird reading experience for me. I did like Variant more than Divergent, but it’s not fun to be constantly reminded of another storyline while you’re reading.

Thankfully, any hint of similarity to Veronica Roth was lost in Feedback, and it was wonderful to see the plot stand up on its own, away from dangerous comparisons.

Feedback gave me the opportunity to really appreciate Benson Fisher as a character. Upon close examination, I’m pretty ecstatic by how well-rounded he is. Benson is selfish and single-minded. His biggest goal is self-preservation, and given the circumstances, I can’t say that I’d want him to be anything else. It’s a very realistic portrayal. Yet over time, he attempts to prove that he isn’t some self-important jerk, that he cares for people besides himself. From the beginning of the book to the end, I saw definite growth and development in Benson, and the Benson we know at the end of Feedback is really not the same person we were introduced to on the first page of Variant. That, for me, is always the most important part of a book for me, whether or not a character has learned anything over the course of a novel. Feedback really nailed that for me.

In general, Robison Wells really outdid himself with characterization and realistic personalities in this book. Everyone is portrayed in shades of gray—there really is no human villain (but plenty of robot villains). Feedback is about a bunch of kids stuck in an impossible place, trying to make the best out of what’s happening, trying to live their lives as best they can.

Fabulous characterization aside, I was also pleased with the dystopian elements in Feedback. Coming from someone who doesn’t like the dystopian genre all that well, that’s saying something. Other readers might have been disappointed by the non-answers and vague conclusions that this book reached, but I was satisfied. A few very small pieces of information were revealed, but I didn’t feel like Robison Wells was playing around with his readers, being coy on purpose. It’s just that Benson doesn’t know what’s going on, so neither do I. For me, it made sense.

Wells’s prose is also very strong and well-defined, I found. Benson’s narrative is clear and makes sense. Yet, at the same time, I did have some trouble. It was like my eyes couldn’t stick to the page, so they’d wander around a bit, and I’d miss a couple of details here and there that, ultimately, were important for me to know. I’m not sure what caused that, though—could have been my fault.

Altogether, I was totally impressed with Feedback. With this book, Robison Wells, has become one of my favorite dystopian authors, and probably one of my favorite YA authors all around. Coming from me, that’s saying something. I totally loved Feedback, and I think it’s a wonderful contribution to the genre.
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Renae M Reviewed by Renae M March 25, 2013
Top 50 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (184)

Feedback

In my experience, Second Book Syndrome is a serious entity in the reading world. Sequels are rarely as good as what came before; I don’t know why, but it’s true. Feedback by Robison Wells is one of the few books in my experience that outdistanced its prequel. I was a bit tentative about starting this one, but Robison Wells really brought it all together for me here.

One of my biggest complaints with the first book in this series, Variant, was how suspiciously similar to Veronica Roth’s Divergent it was. Both novels were released within a few weeks of each other, back in 2011, and it was just a weird reading experience for me. I did like Variant more than Divergent, but it’s not fun to be constantly reminded of another storyline while you’re reading.

Thankfully, any hint of similarity to Veronica Roth was lost in Feedback, and it was wonderful to see the plot stand up on its own, away from dangerous comparisons.

Feedback gave me the opportunity to really appreciate Benson Fisher as a character. Upon close examination, I’m pretty ecstatic by how well-rounded he is. Benson is selfish and single-minded. His biggest goal is self-preservation, and given the circumstances, I can’t say that I’d want him to be anything else. It’s a very realistic portrayal. Yet over time, he attempts to prove that he isn’t some self-important jerk, that he cares for people besides himself. From the beginning of the book to the end, I saw definite growth and development in Benson, and the Benson we know at the end of Feedback is really not the same person we were introduced to on the first page of Variant. That, for me, is always the most important part of a book for me, whether or not a character has learned anything over the course of a novel. Feedback really nailed that for me.

In general, Robison Wells really outdid himself with characterization and realistic personalities in this book. Everyone is portrayed in shades of gray—there really is no human villain (but plenty of robot villains). Feedback is about a bunch of kids stuck in an impossible place, trying to make the best out of what’s happening, trying to live their lives as best they can.

Fabulous characterization aside, I was also pleased with the dystopian elements in Feedback. Coming from someone who doesn’t like the dystopian genre all that well, that’s saying something. Other readers might have been disappointed by the non-answers and vague conclusions that this book reached, but I was satisfied. A few very small pieces of information were revealed, but I didn’t feel like Robison Wells was playing around with his readers, being coy on purpose. It’s just that Benson doesn’t know what’s going on, so neither do I. For me, it made sense.

Wells’s prose is also very strong and well-defined, I found. Benson’s narrative is clear and makes sense. Yet, at the same time, I did have some trouble. It was like my eyes couldn’t stick to the page, so they’d wander around a bit, and I’d miss a couple of details here and there that, ultimately, were important for me to know. I’m not sure what caused that, though—could have been my fault.

Altogether, I was totally impressed with Feedback. With this book, Robison Wells, has become one of my favorite dystopian authors, and probably one of my favorite YA authors all around. Coming from me, that’s saying something. I totally loved Feedback, and I think it’s a wonderful contribution to the genre.

Was this review helpful to you? 
I must say, Feedback is nothing compared to Variant, absolutely nothing. I guess that's why it was so cheap in the book shop, because it wasn't that good....

Feedback was so disappointing compared to Variant. There was hardly anything to it. At the start, Benson had to find help for Becky, and when he did, he still happened to in reach of the compound, and he met the real people from which the androids were based on. I thought it would be that they escape and there is a whole uprising, but there is nothing of the sort. And for the rest of the book, they didn't leave, which was really stupid. They had so many chances to escape, but they never went, as Benson wanted to save the others, and Becky was injured. Now come on!! He could of gotten help from outside, and Becky had an arm injury, not a leg or foot one, she could walk perfectly!! I think it would of been better if they escaped, and gotten help.

Feedback was also really dry, action and emotion wise. The only action was the occasional android spotting, and the 'fight' at the end. You'd expect to be a lot more fighting, especially for this book, but there was basically zero. And that great mystery surrounding Maxfield has withered and died, so the excitement drops even lower. For the emotions department, Benson did have some weird feelings for Becky, but nothing really happened, and they were bickering a lot of the time. Benson was emotionless, he wasn't scared, happy or even bored. He was just dull, and that was it. Nothing more and less, same with most of the characters.

As the story wore on, I got more and more disinterested. There were long stretches of time when nothing happened at all. The characters kept getting muddled up. Who was Carrie? Who was Lily? Who was Harvard? I kept getting confused with the characters, as they all had the same dull personalities. This book had way to much characters.

I was really disappointed with this book. There was nothing standing out, like the mystery of Maxfield in Variant, and even the people Benson found didn't really mean anything that much. I think that if you really enjoyed Variant, and want to find out what happens, read Feedback. Otherwise just give it a miss, it's really not that good.

Overall rating 
 
2.0
Plot 
 
2.0
Characters 
 
2.0
Writing Style 
 
2.0
Casog Reviewed by Casog January 15, 2013
Top 50 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (261)

Not as good as Variant....

I must say, Feedback is nothing compared to Variant, absolutely nothing. I guess that's why it was so cheap in the book shop, because it wasn't that good....

Feedback was so disappointing compared to Variant. There was hardly anything to it. At the start, Benson had to find help for Becky, and when he did, he still happened to in reach of the compound, and he met the real people from which the androids were based on. I thought it would be that they escape and there is a whole uprising, but there is nothing of the sort. And for the rest of the book, they didn't leave, which was really stupid. They had so many chances to escape, but they never went, as Benson wanted to save the others, and Becky was injured. Now come on!! He could of gotten help from outside, and Becky had an arm injury, not a leg or foot one, she could walk perfectly!! I think it would of been better if they escaped, and gotten help.

Feedback was also really dry, action and emotion wise. The only action was the occasional android spotting, and the 'fight' at the end. You'd expect to be a lot more fighting, especially for this book, but there was basically zero. And that great mystery surrounding Maxfield has withered and died, so the excitement drops even lower. For the emotions department, Benson did have some weird feelings for Becky, but nothing really happened, and they were bickering a lot of the time. Benson was emotionless, he wasn't scared, happy or even bored. He was just dull, and that was it. Nothing more and less, same with most of the characters.

As the story wore on, I got more and more disinterested. There were long stretches of time when nothing happened at all. The characters kept getting muddled up. Who was Carrie? Who was Lily? Who was Harvard? I kept getting confused with the characters, as they all had the same dull personalities. This book had way to much characters.

I was really disappointed with this book. There was nothing standing out, like the mystery of Maxfield in Variant, and even the people Benson found didn't really mean anything that much. I think that if you really enjoyed Variant, and want to find out what happens, read Feedback. Otherwise just give it a miss, it's really not that good.

Was this review helpful to you? 
Well that was...something.

I'm not sure where to start, so I guess I'll just go straight for the strange. I can't really get into it since it's the big hook at the end, but seriously? What is up with that? I mean, I was down with the androids and ready for any other science fiction thing Wells would throw my way, but that was just strange. And since I'm assuming Feedback is the last of the series there's no explanation whatsoever.

Okay, enough being all super secretive now.
I'm sad to say that I'm rather disappointed by Feedback since I enjoyed Variant so much. Everything I loved about Variant just wasn't in Feedback, though. There were still some unanswered questions, but the mystery wasn't there. This time around it was basically just a lot of sitting around hoping for an escape route to become clear. There was some action here and there, but it didn't really draw me in and make me want to root for anyone more than halfheartedly.

That's the other thing: the emotion wasn't there for me at all. Sure, I wanted them to get out of there, but the most passionate I felt was whenever a description of gore popped up and then it was just my insides wanting to make their way outside. Most of the characters were just background to the point that I could barely keep names straight.

The Nutshell: I think the loss of the boarding school setting and the plot shrouded in mystery really did a number on Feedback. I wasn't swept up like I was in Variant and I couldn't really connect with any of the characters. If you loved Variant I suggest either skipping Feedback or lowering your expectations.

Miss/Near Miss
Overall rating 
 
2.0
Plot 
 
2.0
Characters 
 
2.0
Writing Style 
 
2.0
Jasmine Reviewed by Jasmine December 03, 2012
Top 10 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (327)

Feedback (A Room with Books review)

Well that was...something.

I'm not sure where to start, so I guess I'll just go straight for the strange. I can't really get into it since it's the big hook at the end, but seriously? What is up with that? I mean, I was down with the androids and ready for any other science fiction thing Wells would throw my way, but that was just strange. And since I'm assuming Feedback is the last of the series there's no explanation whatsoever.

Okay, enough being all super secretive now.
I'm sad to say that I'm rather disappointed by Feedback since I enjoyed Variant so much. Everything I loved about Variant just wasn't in Feedback, though. There were still some unanswered questions, but the mystery wasn't there. This time around it was basically just a lot of sitting around hoping for an escape route to become clear. There was some action here and there, but it didn't really draw me in and make me want to root for anyone more than halfheartedly.

That's the other thing: the emotion wasn't there for me at all. Sure, I wanted them to get out of there, but the most passionate I felt was whenever a description of gore popped up and then it was just my insides wanting to make their way outside. Most of the characters were just background to the point that I could barely keep names straight.

The Nutshell: I think the loss of the boarding school setting and the plot shrouded in mystery really did a number on Feedback. I wasn't swept up like I was in Variant and I couldn't really connect with any of the characters. If you loved Variant I suggest either skipping Feedback or lowering your expectations.

Miss/Near Miss

Was this review helpful to you? 
 
Powered by JReviews

LATEST YABC BLOG POSTS - BLOG TOURS, ANNOUNCEMENTS, AND GIVEAWAYS

  • Giveaway: The Ark by Laura Liddell (International)

    The Ark By Laura Liddell Nolen    Release Date: March 26, 2015   About the Book It’s the final days of earth, and sixteen-year-old Char is right where she belongs: in prison. With her criminal record, she doesn’t qualify for a place on an Ark, one of the five ...

  • Giveaway: 5 To 1 by Holly Bodger (US & Canada Only)

    5 to1 By Holly Bodger Release Date: 5/12/15   About the Book Sudasa doesn't want to be a wife and Kiran, a boy forced to compete in the test to become her husband, has other plans as well. Sudasa's family wants nothing more than for their daughter to do the right thing and p ...

  • It's live!! Cover Reveal: Tor Maddox: Unleashed by Liz Coley + Giveaway (International)

    Hi, YABCers, and welcome to today's cover reveal! Today we're super excited to celebrate the cover reveal for TOR MADDOX: UNLEASHED by Liz Coley, releasing May 1, 2015 from LCTeen. Before we get to the cover, here's a note from Liz:   Hi YABC! I’m thrilled to int ...

  • What's New in YA

      Are you wondering what's new in YA today? Check out these wonderful new releases!   The sheriff's son, Kellan Turner, is not the golden boy everyone thinks he is, and Romy Grey knows that for a fact. Because no one wants to believe a girl from the wrong side of town, ...

  • YABC Superstar of the Month: Ellie Gehman!

    YABC is a big site with a lot of moving pieces. We wouldn't exist without the tireless efforts of our incredible staff of volunteers. Our volunteers read and review books, post giveaways and cover reveals, format book graphics for our social media sites, and much more. YABC is a fabulous communit ...

  • MTV Movie Awards Recap

    Last night was a big night for YA book-to-movie adaptations at the MTV Movie Awards! Check out how many categories we won: MOVIE OF THE YEAR:    BEST KISS:   BREAKTHROUGH PERFORMANCE: Dylan O'Brien The Maze Runner BEST FEMALE PERFORMAN ...

  • It's live!! Cover Reveal: The 57 Lives of Alex Wayfare by M.G. Buehrlen + Giveaway (US Only)

      Hello, YABC! We've got a special reveal for you today! Today we're super excited to celebrate the cover reveal for THE 57 LIVES OF ALEX WAYFARE by M.G. Buehrlen, releasing April 14, 2015 from Diversion Books. Before we get to the cover, here's a note from M.G.:   ...

  • It's live!! Cover Reveal: Starflight by Melissa Landers + Giveaway (International)

    Hi, YABCers, and welcome to the second cover reveal of the week! Today we're super excited to celebrate the cover reveal for STARFLIGHT by Melissa Landers, releasing February 2, 2016 from Disney Hyperion. Before we get to the cover, here's a note from Melissa:   Hey, YAB ...

  • Trailer Reveal: Things We Know By Heart by Jessi Kirby + Giveaway (US Only)

    Hello, YABCers! We're bringing you a different kind of reveal today! Today we're super excited to celebrate the trailer reveal for THINGS WE KNOW BY HEART by Jessi Kirby, releasing April 21, 2015 from HarperTeen. Before we get to the trailer, here's a note from Jessi:   ...

  • Author Top 5 with Fonda Lee

    Today we welcome Fonda Lee to YABC! Fonda’s newly released book ZEROBOXER (Flux/Llewellyn) is high-action science fiction novel that releases this week. Since all authors want their books to find the right readers, Fonda has compiled this handy quiz to help you determine if you are the sort ...

  • Diversify Your Shelves With WNDB!

    Columnist: Maurene Goo   It’s very exciting to write the debut post for this new series of diversity recs for YABC! As a member of We Need Diverse Books and as a YA author who started this entire journey because I wanted to see books that reflected something close to my teen years in ...

  • Giveaway: Shadow Scale by Rachel Hartman (US& CAN Only)

    Shadow Scale By Rachel Hartman Release Date: March 10, 2015   About the Book In her Morris Award-winning and New York Times bestselling debut, Rachel Hartman took our breath away with an utterly original alternative-medieval world full of dragons, Seraphina. This novel ...

View more blog entries

Latest Book Listings Added

The-Girl-Who-Ignored-Ghosts.jpg
Category: Young Adult Indie
Kat Preston doesn’t believe in ghosts. Not because she’s never seen one, but because she saw one too many. Refusing...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
For the past two months, Kitty Doe's life has been a lie. Forced to impersonate the Prime Minister's niece, her...
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
Nerdy Dozen 2.jpg
Category: Kids Fiction
In this exciting sequel to The Nerdy Dozen, Neil Andertol and his gang of dorky gamers are once again called...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
les miserables.jpg
Category: Kids Fiction
Travel back to nineteenth-century France with ex-convict Jean Valjean as he tries to put his criminal past behind him and...
 
4.5
 
0.0 (0)
Wishing doesn't make it so, Azra does. Azra has just turned sixteen, and overnight her body lengthens, her olive skin...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
After being on the run, Ariane Tucker finds herself back where she started-under Dr. Jacobs's cruel control. Now she must...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
An evocative and compelling story of two sisters who would do anything for each other—perfect for fans of Thirteen Reasons...
 
0.0
 
3.3 (1)
Acclaimed author Anne Blankman returns to the shadowy and dangerous world of 1930s Germany in this thrilling sequel to Prisoner...
 
0.0
 
4.3 (1)
Can one girl take on so many identities without losing her own? Find out in this riveting companion to The...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Three different teenage girls learn how to navigate their hearts and NYC. City Love is the start of a romantic...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
From the acclaimed author of How to Love comes another stunning contemporary novel, perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen. Molly...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Kids Fiction
Cassie and Caitlyn Waters may be identical twins, but everything else about them is completely different. The only thing they...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
woven book.jpg
Two unlikely allies must journey across a kingdom in the hopes of thwarting death itself. All his life, Nels has...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
When your life is a lie, how do you know what’s real? Alexandra Gastone has a simple plan: graduate high...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Category: Young Adult Indie
Allie Carmichael has always believed life is simple. You’re born. You live. You die. She has no cause to...
 
0.0
 
4.5 (2)
I am different. I have always been different, but no one can know or my life will be in danger....
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Laia is a slave. Elias is a soldier. Neither is free. Under the Martial Empire, defiance is met with death....
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Is there anything that electric chemistry can’t overcome? The past may be gone, but love has a way of holding...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Winner, Governor General's Literary Award Finalist, Lambda Literary Award and Ferro-Grumley Award for LGBT Fiction "Raziel Reid is a really...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Fans of Laini Taylor’s Daughter of Smoke and Bone will love this second book in the Maeve'ra trilogy by Amelia...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)