When I first stumbled across Zoo by Tara Elizabeth, I knew I had to read it. For me, it seemed to be a book with an interesting premise that was a both different than anything else I have ever read and out of my comfort zone. That was what I wanted.
After adding the book to my to-read list, like others, I was contacted by the author, Tara Elizabeth (who was very friendly), about the possibility of receiving a free copy of her book in exchange for my completely honest review. Excited about the opportunity (this is a first for me), I accepted the offer. This review is 100% my thoughts, opinions and feelings. I hope others find it useful in their journey to decide if this is a book worth reading.
Before I get into my review, I would like to mention that I did NOT read the finished copy of this book. There is a newer version out where the main character, Emma, was tweaked just a tiny bit. Some of the issues that others had with the main character, should no longer exist. With that being said, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Regardless of the fact that changes were being made. I imagine that the new changes would be equally enjoyable to me.
When I don't like a book or can't get into it, I simply can't finish it. When I really enjoy a book, I can't put it down unless I can't keep my eyes open any longer. This was the latter! In fact, I enjoyed this book a lot more than I thought I would. Honestly, the more I read the better it got. There were several shock moments for me where I realized something big, and I really felt the story.
The writing style is more direct than what I am used to, but I'm not complaining. It flowed very nicely, was easy to understand, had great editing and grammar, and the author told the story quite well. It was a fast paced read, with no hiccups. I would read this author again. In fact, I plan on continuing this series and reading her other one. I would recommend this book to anybody who enjoys a good dystopian novel.
The rest of this review *may* contain spoilers, so please heed caution before reading any further.
By now you should have already read the description of the book. A girl dies in a car accident, and wakes up in the future encased in a human zoo, and she tells the story of what she went through. It is true that the main character starts out angry, confused and a bit moody. She is scared, but it is believable. I personally was not bothered by this, because it felt real, appropriate and understandable. It would blow my mind if this happened to me, and I felt for her and the others. I would more than likely react in a similar way. Not everybody can be Katniss, after all, and Emma is entitled to her feelings and should not be underestimated or judged too quickly. She is Emma .. and she is tough.
I do feel like her character greatly improved and had experienced a lot personal growth. Emma is flawed. She is head strong, but insecure. She is independent, but still needs help sometimes, which bothers her. She is smart, but sometimes has poor judgment. Simply put, she is human.. A human that I became to adore and root for. Give her a chance, because she ends up surprising you.. She did for me.
The conflict with James vs. Kale bothered me a little bit, but in the sense that I hated the way that she was blind to what was in front of her. I felt like Kale was mistreated and didn't deserve her attitude toward him. That's not to say that I didn't think the book shouldn't have included the conflict, because It managed to suck out a lot of emotions from me. This is important!
At first I wondered where the author was going to go with it. It wasn't until they were transferred that I got completely hooked. Not because I didn't enjoy the first part of it, but because I wasn't sure what kind of conflicts could happen in the zoo. Once in the big dome, though, the action really picked up. Good call for having Emma and Kale so rebellious, and for introducing a few new characters.
Definitely read this book, and give Emma a chance to warm your heart. I'm telling you, it's a GREAT read.
(reviewed 8 days after purchase)