I have no reservations in saying that I absolutely hate this book. This is one of the worst books I have ever read, and there are several reasons for this. Before I get into why I think this book is an atrocity, I would like to warn you this review will contain spoilers, so if you want to read this book, you should do so first and then come back and see if you agree with my opinions! Although, personally, I highly recommend that you don’t waste your time reading this. I know it sounds harsh but trust me, it isn’t worth the hassle!
Basically this book is about a mysterious illness that is striking teenage girls. The story begins when the main character’s best friend has a seizure in the middle of class. This sparks odd symptoms in other girls and people are wanting to know what the heck is going on. It honestly sounded promising. Mysterious plague with a pandemic panic? Sign me up. However this book was such a disappointment.
My first sign should have been the fact that this book dragged on and on for the first little bit. At first I thought it was just because I had been really busy at work and didn’t have a whole lot of time to read. However, when I sat down to read it in the evenings and on the weekend, I could not get over how slow it was. The whole first quarter to half of the book is the characters wondering what is going on with the first girl in the hospital. I mean, we get the picture! She’s in the hospital with some mysterious symptoms, let’s move on and find out what this is!
And then the speculation started. This book was looking like a 2 or 3 teacup book until I read the theories for the illness. The first theory was that the girls were swimming in this weird lake full of chemicals. Or perhaps it was radioactive? I don’t know because we aren’t given any idea why this lake would be so polluted or weird. I mean, there wasn’t a nuclear power plant nearby that I knew of. There could have been, but I was zoned out through half the book so….
And then the worst theory of all: the illness was caused by the HPV vaccine. As soon as I read this I knew this book was a 1 teacup, even a half teacup read. Heck, I didn’t want to give it any teacups! I knew in that moment I would hate the book. Having the HPV vaccine be the cause a horrible illness in a book is horrendous. This vaccine is so important to protect young girls, and even young boys from developing certain types of cancer in the future. If you ask me, I would much rather deal with the minor side effects that could occur with the vaccine (such as a sore arm), rather than get cancer. People get so hyped up and don’t want to vaccinate their kids or themselves for whatever New Age crap reason, and people die because of it. Why would you not inoculate your child from getting deadly diseases that we have developed prevention for?! I’m sorry but I can rant about this forever. I’m very against people being against modern medicine when they are not informed. *END RANT* lol 😛
Even though the origin of the illness wasn’t the vaccine (we’ll discuss the anti-climactic cause here in a moment), just the fact that it was an option was completely ridiculous and left a bad taste in my mouth. Allowing your readers to think that the HPV vaccine could have caused a serious illness is so misleading and can put doubts in the minds of readers about the safety of the vaccine. This was NOT okay with me.
And what was the actual cause of the illness you may ask? Brace yourself.
One girl poisoned another girl with some kind of drug because she thought she had sex with the boy she had a crush on.
Ummmm? Okay, so now it boils down to some middle school boy drama? And what about the other girls who weren’t poisoned? There was no explanation for why they were puking and spasming all over the place. With one girl they thought it might be a panic attack, but they never confirmed that theory. I suppose we’re just going to go with it? I just didn’t get why this illness because such a huge thing that so many girls were getting when only one girl was originally poisoned.
Overall, I most certainly did NOT enjoy this book. As if you couldn’t tell 😛 Along with ridiculous and unaddressed plot issues, the writing style did not hook me at all, and I found myself zoning out completely and having to reread entire pages. I honestly feared that this book would put me into a slump, but I will not let this happen! I’m sorry that this review was a little ranty, but I just needed to vent my feelings and opinions! I thought I was getting an intense pandemic story, all I got was some stupid YA drama. I’m sorry if you love this book, but I do not recommend. It’s definitely worth skipping in order to find a book you would love!