Jun 8, 2015

Blog Tour: Out of Control by Sarah Alderson

Hello, runaway readers! Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Sarah Alderson's Out of Control! I'll be sharing my thoughts on this on-the-run novel with you today, and spoiler alert: I liked it! Of course I'll also be telling you everything you need to know about Sarah and her book, plus there's a giveaway. So don't get skip town just yet--I promise you have some time to stick around before the bad guys are on your tail again.

TitleOut of Control
Author: Sarah Alderson
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publishing Date: May 12, 2015
Pages/Format: 320, eARC
Goodreads Amazon Barnes & Noble

A girl looking to escape her past in New York City ends up on the run from a dangerous conspiracy in this sizzling, high-stakes novel.

When seventeen-year-old Liva came to New York City, all she wanted was to escape the painful memories of her past and finally find a fresh start. Her hopes for a new future were dashed the moment she became the sole witness to a brutal murder. When she's taken into police custody - supposedly for her own protection - she realizes something isn't right, but it's too late. Soon, bullets start flying, and Liva realizes that she is not just a witness, but the target - and she needs to escape before it's too late.

With the help of a sexy car thief that she met at the station, Liva manages to get away from the massacre unharmed, but now the two of them are alone in New York, trying to outrun and outwit the two killers who will stop at nothing to find them. Liva and Jay are living on the edge, but when you're on the edge, there's a long way to fall.

Book in One Word: Page-turning!

Out of Control has a premise that's very hard for me to resist. A girl is on the run, there's romance, and there's that whole crime-ish, thriller thing going on, and I want to read like all the thrillers because they're thrilling. It certainly sounded like my kind of book, and though I didn't love Out of Control--I had one main issue--I did like it, and I loved when it hit a point where one intense thing right after the other was happening, and when my Kindle died and I couldn't charge it I DIDN'T KNOW WHAT TO DO WITH MYSELF.

When it comes to writing, I'm getting picky. (I put some blame on a fiction class I took last quarter--stupid college.) I'll certainly read writing I'm not the biggest fan of, but there are styles of writing I prefer over others. If I don't love the writing, the book can get redemption through other elements--and that's the case with Out of Control. The diction wasn't my favorite, but once I got used to it it wasn't much of a bother, and other things happened--a blossoming romance, tension, suspense, action--to distract me from it.

It's interesting, because Out of Control had a good start--it reminded me of Terminator, minus, well, any terminators. But I still wasn't super into the book for a while, despite its attention grabbing opening. (Seriously, something like that is hard to keep your eyes away from, and if I was reading while standing up I would've been on my toes.) But once I did get into the book, it totally sucked because I had a bunch of other things I had to do and I couldn't just sit down and READ. I wanted to know why very bad people were after Liva. I wanted to know what would happen between Liva and Jay because I could sense some steam between them. (Spoiler alert: Umm, Sarah Alderson also writes New Adult, and if her YA is this HOT CHA CHA then her NA must be on fire.) I had ideas for how the book might end, but I really had no idea. And speaking of the end, is there a sequel? Because that end wasn't enough closure for me and I'd like more Liva and Jay, please.

While there are some secondary characters we see little bits and pieces from--mainly Yoyo and Marisa, both of whom I liked--we really only get to know Liva and Jay. After getting expelled from her school in Oman (or Nigeria, I can't remember), Liva is sent to live with her dad in the States. She's an average girl, except she does ballet, is a thrill-seeker who likes the high you get when climbing up onto high roofs, and knows how to work a gun, since, due to her father's line of work (fights human trafficking, hires mercenaries or something big that brings in the bucks) she's grown up with bodyguards and the knowledge of how to get out of sticky situations. While her dad's away doing work, Liva witnesses a murder and is brought to the station for questioning, where she meets hot car thief Jay. When something bad happens at the station, she and Jay--a Fast and Furious type who's the only son staying out of the Latino gangs and being good for his mother--go on the run. And in the span of, oh, less than forty-eight hours, everything goes out of control as they dodge bullets, climb onto roofs, try to ignore their sexual tension and focus on what's really important (HA), try to stay hidden, and learn some things that have to do with human trafficking and why people are after Liva.

Though I didn't love Out of Control like I was hoping to, I definitely liked it. It's kind of nice that it takes place in so short a time, and there are some scenes that just make you want to bite your nails--unless you have acrylics like I do and can't really do that--as you wait and see what is going to happen, and hope that nothing bad happens to the good guys. With parts reminiscent of Terminator (minus the robots and the future), National Treasure (okay, just one scene, and barely), and movies like Abduction (where a couple of teens are constantly running from bad guys with guns and maybe kiss each other), Out of Control was full of twists and turns that had me twisting and turning in my seat. When I didn't want to put the book down I also didn't want it to end--I was getting used to the characters and liked reading about them. I'm pretty sure there isn't a sequel, but there could be In Control or something? Either way, when books get all thrillery and suspenseful like Out of Control: more of it, please.

Did I like it? Yes!
Did I love it? Nope.
Would I reread it? Probably not...
Would I purchase it? I don't need it on my shelves right this second, but I wouldn't mind owning it eventually.
Who would I recommend it to? Fans of books with characters on the run, the need to turn page after page, and romance in sticky situations.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review, and that in no way sways my opinion of the book.

Having spent most of her life in London, Sarah Alderson quit her job in the non profit sector in 2009 and took off on a round the world trip with her husband and princess-obsessed daughter on a mission to find a new place to call home. After several months in India, Singapore, Australia and the US, they settled in Bali where Sarah now spends her days writing by the pool and trying to machete open coconuts without severing a limb.

She finished her first novel, Hunting Lila (winner of the Kingston Book Award), just before they left the UK, wrote the sequel on the beach in India and had signed a two book deal with Simon & Schuster by the time they had reached Bali.

A third book, Fated, about a teenage demon slayer, was published in January 2012.

The Sound, a thriller romance set in Nantucket, was published in August 2013 and this was followed by the critically acclaimed Out of Control in May 2014.

She also writes New Adult romance for Pan Macmillan (UK) / Simon & Schuster (US) under the pen name Mila Gray.

Website Twitter Facebook

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. I'm glad to see that you did enjoy this one. I've seen it around a lot but I'm not sure if it's my type of read or not. Thanks for sharing your review!
    Krystianna @ Downright Dystopian

  2. Great review, Rachel! This sounds like a fun, twisty read! :)

  3. I agree with Giselle: great review! You convinced me to add Out of Control to my tbr list.

  4. Yes, what a lovely review! I've actually only read one of Sarah Alderson's books, but I know I LOVED Hunting Lila. And then, as usual, proceeded to not finish the series. WHOOPS. Also, WOW. She's traveled all over! I'm quite envious.

  5. As a big fan of Sarah's books really excited to read this one. thanks for the chance to win it! :) Great review!


I've been having s-to-the-pam issues, and I wasn't thrilled with Disqus, so sorry about the CAPTCHA!