Review Detail

4.3 3
Young Adult Fiction 372
Impossible To Put Down
Overall rating
Writing Style
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
What I Loved:

From the second chapter (the moment things start to go seriously wrong for the heroine), I was hooked. Smart world building and a premise that doesn't feel too far removed from what is currently possible with science make for an engrossing, disturbing story that manages to be both suspenseful and thought-provoking.

Davy is an intriguing heroine. She begins the book as a mostly typical teenage girl with talents, dreams, a boyfriend, and plans for the future. But once she's labeled a killer based on her DNA, things change drastically, and she slowly changes in response. Readers will face existential questions about nature vs. nurture and about prejudice causing a self-fulling prophecy, but those questions are threaded through a fast-paced, starkly written plot that refuses to slow down. Readers will be fascinated, moved, and scared by Davy's transformation.

While the book is told through Davy's point of view, leaving most of the character development to her, the secondary characters feel fully realized and vivid. The character of Sean will doubtless intrigue readers the most, especially readers who love an enigmatic boy with the potential to be both heroic and deadly. The author takes an unflinching approach to her secondary characters as she fleshes out a world in which society judges, ostracizes, and eventually seeks to remove those whose DNA seems to mark them as potential killers--even those who've never had a violent episode. The effects of this ostracism and prejudice are bombs within families, peer groups, romantic relationships, and communities, and the author delivers all of that within the context of relentless conflict and ever-increasing tension.

Readers who love romance will find something worth swooning over, while readers who don't want romance to be the main focus will cheer the fact that Davy becomes so focused on survival, romance is a distant second on her priority list and takes her by surprise.

What Left Me Wanting More:

My only minor quibble was a moment early on in the book when Sean plays the anti-hero briefly to deliberately scare Davy into realizing how much trouble she's in. While there is no romantic context to their relationship, and I understand his heroic motivations, those few paragraphs made me uncomfortable and might be uncomfortable for readers who've felt deliberately threatened by someone bigger than themselves. I will add that by the two-thirds mark in the book, Sean had completely won me over, and I can't wait to read more of his story.

Final Verdict:

Smart world building, a chilling premise, and characters that will engage readers from page one make UNINVITED impossible to put down.
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