Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Book Review: Eve & Adam by Michael Grant and Katherine Applegate

Release Date: October 2, 2012
(Thanks to ATWT for allowing me to participate on this tour!)
Published by: Feiwel and Friends

Eve & Adam by Michael Grant and Katherine Applegate

Sixteen-year-old Evening Spiker lives an affluent life in San Francisco with her mother, EmmaRose, a successful geneticist and owner of Spiker Biotech. Sure, Evening misses her father who died mysteriously, but she’s never really questioned it. Much like how she’s never stopped to think how off it is that she’s never been sick. That is, until she’s struck by a car and is exposed to extensive injuries. Injuries that seem to be healing faster than physically possible. 

While recuperating in Spiker Biotech’s lush facilities, she meets Solo Plissken, a very attractive, if off-putting boy her age who spent his life at Spiker Biotech. Like Evening, he’s never questioned anything... until now. Solo drops hints to Evening that something isn’t right, and Emma-Rose may be behind it. Evening puts this out of her mind and begins her summer internship project: To simulate the creation of the perfect boy. With the help of Solo, Evening uncovers secrets so big they could change the world completely.

Ten Likes/Dislikes:

1. (+) Evening, the protagonist - it's pretty hard not to like a protagonist who manages to keep her snark even after she's been hit by a car. She had a funny perspective to read from. Eve's strong and aware of her own faults, and I applaud her that. Sometimes she was a bit dramatic, but given the situation she was put in, it didn't seem too much.
2. (--) Names - Evening Spiker?  Solo Plissken?  The names in this book were so ridiculous it was distracting.  I'm not usually one who gets caught up in those details, but I found it hard to not to care. Why name someone Aislinn if it's a sci-fi book?  Evening, if you want to associate it with Eve?  Evening would've been fine on its own but with Spiker? As my friend put it, too "My Little Pony." Then there are ordinary names like Tommy. I couldn't understand the confusing mix of generic and mythology related names in a sci fi thriller. I wasn't sure how to take this book - on one end, it was funny and light, and then with these names, it was trying to get me take it seriously (same situation, btw, with the villains of this story too), and I just couldn't.
3. (+/-) Romance - This book has alternating perspectives. At first, I was a little off put by Solo's observations of Eve because I thought the book would focus on Adam and Eve more than this other guy... and because Solo seemed so stereotypical in the beginning... But then I got over that. It was kind of cute to read about their tentative awareness of each other... Very YA-he's-cute-she's-cute I want to get to know her/him better but I don't have the guts to admit that I think (s)he's hot... However, when it was supposed to be something deeper, I was really, really skeptical. They didn't really know much about each other, and suddenly they were trusting each other with far too much.
4. (+) Pop Culture References - It's very obvious that this is a book that needs to be read now, or if not now, sometime in the next five or so years. There are a lot of pop culture references, some of which I found pretty amusing i.e. likening one guy to a Just for Men ad.  They fit in well with the snarky commentary from both Eve and Solo.
5. (--) Science Fiction? - If you call this book a sci-fi thriller, you might be kidding yourself.  There are no explanations behind this mysterious science. Of course that could add to the "mystery" of it all, but it also made it less believable and less real for me. Sometimes they reference genetics, and there's a bit of that scientists playing god theme (even in the title, Eve & Adam), but I never felt like this book took that theme to the next level. I didn't really felt like I was reading a scifi thriller so much as a remaking of some sort of paranormal soap opera.
6. (+) Cut the Crap - At the same time, the writing had a very no nonsense type of describing things. Here are the buildings. This is what they look like. No excessively long descriptions and whatnot. That fit it in nicely with the fast pace and almost reminded me of the Hex Hall trilogy, given that Sophie was snarky and had the pairing down of descriptions.
7. (--) Requires a lot of Suspension of Disbelief - There's not much more I can say on this one without giving away a lot of the books details / spoilers... But there were several times when I had to put the book down for a moment and just breathe before returning to the pages.
8. (+/-) The Writing - Sometimes it felt more like it was middle grade than young adult to me. There were a lot of short sentences and putting one sentence on the next line to build momentum and drama but it was done so often that it lost its effect for me. So while there was this no nonsense type of describing things, there was also an immature feel to Eve, Solo, and even Adam's perspectives. The kind of immature feel that I get whenever I think that adult authors are dumbing things down for YA (except these aren't adult authors, so I don't know. I haven't read any of their other work, so I can't compare this to them either.).
9. (+) Pacing - one thing that this book has going for it is that there is never a dull moment. Something is always going on, and the book pushes forward with its fast-paced plot.
10. (+) The Cover - The perfect cover.  I love it.  Feiwel and Friends does a really good job with that kind of stuff.

This book wasn't what I expected it to be, which is really disappointing because I thought the premise of Eve creating Adam was awesome. It had a weird mix of funny and serious, and too often I put the book down because of how unrealistic everything was.


  1. From your review, this doesn't seem what I expected it to be either, but I'm still curious to read this. Great review:)

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