Published by Strange Chemistry on January 7, 2014
Genres: Young Adult Science Fiction
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Seventeen-year-old Riven is as tough as they come. Coming from a world ravaged by a devastating android war, she has to be. There’s no room for softness, no room for emotion, no room for mistakes. A Legion General, she is the right hand of the young Prince of Neospes, a parallel universe to Earth. In Neospes, she has everything: rank, responsibility and respect. But when Prince Cale sends her away to find his long-lost brother, Caden, who has been spirited back to modern day Earth, Riven finds herself in uncharted territory.
Thrown out of her comfort zone but with the mindset of a soldier, Riven has to learn how to be a girl in a realm that is the opposite of what she knows. Riven isn’t prepared for the beauty of a world that is unlike her own in so many ways. Nor is she prepared to feel something more than indifference for the very target she seeks. Caden is nothing like Cale, but he makes something in her come alive, igniting a spark deep down that goes against every cell in her body. For the first time in her life, Riven isn’t sure about her purpose, about her calling. Torn between duty and desire, she must decide whether Caden is simply a target or whether he is something more.
Faced with hideous reanimated Vector soldiers from her own world with agendas of their own, as well as an unexpected reunion with a sister who despises her, it is a race against time to bring Caden back to Neospes. But things aren’t always as they seem, and Riven will have to search for truth. Family betrayals and royal coups are only the tip of the iceberg. Will Riven be able to find the strength to defy her very nature? Or will she become the monstrous soldier she was designed to be?
The Almost Girl caught my attention with its beautiful cover, strong heroine and it’s unique story. I do enjoy science fiction so a story about parallel universes intrigued me. I did like this story but I didn’t love it.
Riven is a tough seventeen-year-old sent to Earth for an important mission. I really liked Riven because she was a strong female character that I think is especially important in young adult novels. Coming from a parallel universe Riven has to struggle with adjusting to modern Earth and our carefree lifestyle. But since Riven is tough and on a mission she deals with the changes as best as she can. I liked Riven but I was surprised with the bad choices she made during the story. She was a General in Neospes but she made some careless mistakes that could have had deadly results.
Caden is the long-lost brother of Prince Cale and is Riven’s target. Caden is a typical, sarcastic high school athlete and I didn’t develop a connection with him. I wish there was more of a character development of Caden. He seemed to just go along for the ride, even though he was supposed to be a crucial character to the story. Riven and Caden have an instant attraction (or lust) for each other, without even focusing on why. Maybe this will be explained more in the next book, but for now I thought the romance of the story just wasn’t exciting.
The story started slow, but there was a lot of action and twists to the story. Some of the story became predictable but I was still entertained. And one thing I did like about the authors writing is that I felt I was getting to know her as a person. I can tell Ms. Howard is an obvious science fiction fan (with her mention of one of my favorite movies, Dune) and also has a sense of humor (having references to Shrek). This is something I enjoyed.
Overall this was an okay read but I am not sure if I would read the next book.