The Murder Complex (The Murder Complex #1)

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4.3
 
4.1 (4)
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The Murder Complex (The Murder Complex #1)
Age Range
12+
Release Date
June 10, 2014
ISBN
978-0062220004
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The Murder Complex is an action-packed, blood-soaked, futuristic debut thriller set in a world where the murder rate is higher than the birthrate. Meadow Woodson, a fifteen-year-old girl who has been trained by her father to fight, to kill, and to survive in any situation, lives with her family on a houseboat in Florida. The state is controlled by The Murder Complex, an organization that tracks the population with precision. The plot starts to thicken when Meadow meets Zephyr James, who is—although he doesn't know it—one of the MC's programmed assassins. Is their meeting a coincidence? Destiny? Or is it part of a terrifying strategy? And will Zephyr keep Meadow from discovering the haunting truth about her family? This is a dark and compelling debut novel that will appeal to fans of Moira Young's Dust Lands series, La Femme Nikita, and the movie Hanna.

Editor reviews

1 reviews

Intriguing and Dark
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Lindsay Cummings' debut novel is incredible. She creates a believably horrifying future where the murder rate is higher than the birth rate. What circumstances would possibly lead our world to turn this way? The answer is frightening and awesomely dark.

Meadow Woodson is a survivor and will do anything to keep her family safe. Zephyr James, an orphan, is assigned to clean up the dead. He often wakes up surrounded by bodies and blood on his hands with only scattered memories of the night before. Needless to say, each character is interesting and mysterious is in their own way. The plot is well written and packed with suspense and tension. It is utterly impossible to put this book down! I found myself outside for hours just reading The Murder Complex completely ignoring everything around me.

What I love most is the way Cummings deals with the topic that is completely in tune with the YA genre. There is murder and there is understandably death; she is descriptive striking the reader straight inside their hearts without being too graphic. The dual point of view helped moved the story along and was done perfectly. The writing is clear and precise while still being intense.

The Murder Complex is one of the best debut novels out there this summer. Addictive and fast-paced. A perfect read for fans of dystopian and thrillers. Can't wait to see how the plot develops in the next installment.
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User reviews

4 reviews

Overall rating 
 
4.1
Plot 
 
4.5  (4)
Characters 
 
4.0  (4)
Writing Style 
 
3.8  (4)
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Pretty Good despite the Gore
Overall rating 
 
3.7
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
3.0
I listened to this book as an audio book so that may be influencing my perceptions. While I liked the general plot, the gore really got to me after a while, almost to the point where I couldn't stand it. A couple times I yelled, "stop with all the blood already". Despite not liking the gore, I did like the characters and I plan to give Death Code a read. I'll definitely be reading it as opposed to listening to the audio because I think the audio may have made the goriness that much worse. So basically I recommend this one to anyone who doesn't mind lots of blood and murder in their books.
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Terrifying concept
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Meadow Woodson knows how to survive thanks to her father. She will do whatever it takes to keep herself and her family alive and safe. Zephyr James is a ward, an orphan, assigned to clean up the dead. He keeps waking up with bodies around him and blood on his hands, but with scattered memories of what happened. They live in The Shallows, a place where people must pass a test in order to get a job, to get food, where pirates demand payments for passage, where no one’s allowed outside the perimeter, but no one ever gets sick either. The Murder Complex deals with the growing population by doing just as their name suggests.

This book was really action-packed and the dual POV’s worked really well together to keep the tension high. The back-and-forth flowed into each other instead of breaking it up and losing everything the previous chapter worked to build up.

Meadow is a very interesting character. Her father has been training her for years, she’s smart, she can fight, she’s definitely a survivor. Her only weakness is wanting to keep the people she loves safe. There was never the feeling that, if she ended up at the head of the rebellion, if would be an accident and she’d be in over her head. Zephyr was also interesting. He had the weight of so many secrets on him and he struggled with them but there was a spark in him. The more he learned about who he was and why his memories were sometimes hazy, the more I felt for him. I love how the connection between them started off as mutual fascination into something deeper.

The plot, as mentioned, as very action-packed, especially toward the end. Sometimes it did seem to move a little fast, there was so much going on and so much being revealed in the last 1/3 that it felt like it would be easy to miss something important. The quick pace made it a fast read until the end when there was so much going on. The concept is both interesting and horrifying, definitely one of the more disturbing ones I’ve read.

The cover is perfect for the book. It’s dark and matches up with the tagline. It’s definitely one that would have me picking up the book in store.
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Original, Exciting, But Not as Good as I Hoped
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
3.0
Actual Rating: 3.5 Stars

MY THOUGHTS
This book wasn't quite as I expected. I was expecting a bloody dystopian full of non-stop action, which I got, but I was also expecting a book that would knock my socks off and gain a spot on my favorites list, which I did not get. Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed this book, but my socks stayed firmly on my feet.

For the first 100 pages, maybe even 200, I was really enjoying this book! I could easily imagine what was going on in the book, the characters were brave and badass (which makes sense for this world), and I was in awe at how much creativity and imagination it took to create this unique world. I was also very curious and intrigued by the world! I wanted, no, I needed to know more! And I speed through those pages!

And then I begun to get confused as to what was going on.
And I began to realize that while the author is an amazing writer (really amazing!), but I noticed that she doesn't really elaborate. For example: There's one scene where Meadow is forced to face the Dark Time (which is basically where all the murders occur) outside by her Dad on her own. But we never see her do this. In fact, it is never mentioned, but it seemed important. There are other cases where characters may so something that seems important or needs further explanation but the comment never receives any acknowledgment. And there are other scenes that I honestly felt as if they needed more explaining, to ease the confusion. It wasn't that bad though. Sure, I was a bit confused, but I could understand a basis of what was going on. I just kind of wish things for further explained.

That is my only major issue with this book. Although, I did have a minor issue with the romance. There's inst-love and I really hate insta-love. There, I said it. So, yeah, the romance annoyed the stars out of me (You see what I did there? I used Zephyr's swear word!) , but it wasn't too bad because there was 1. a period of no romance whatsoever and 2. the focus of the book was heavily placed on the plot! So it was very easy to ignore.

IN CONCLUSION
This wasn't as awesome as I expected it to be, but I did enjoy it overall! Sure, things were not elaborated very well and there was a bit of insta-love, but the book was unique, original, and exciting! And while this was a very bloody book, I was not bothered by it at all (I was expecting that after all). Let's not forget the fact that the intriguing plot took the front seat, unlike so many YA books! So, this was a very interesting and bloody dystopian that just needs a bit more work. I do recommend this book if you wish to give it a try. Unless, of course, you have a problem with lots of blood and death in books because, this should come as no surprise, there's a lot!
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A Wonderful Debut
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
I was hooked from the very first page of this novel. I flew through the pages faster than the characters were running. I loved how creepy it was and can't wait to see more!
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