Jun 18, 2015

Review: Deadfall by Anna Carey

Author: Anna Carey
Publisher: Harper Teen
Publishing Date: June 16, 2015
Pages/Format: 256, ARC
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In the compelling sequel to Blackbird, Anna Carey delivers a gritty and adrenaline-filled story of a girl desperate to escape her mysterious and terrifying assailants. Told in second person, this heart-pounding thriller puts the reader in front of the target.

A week ago, you woke up in Los Angeles with no memory of who you are. The only thing you knew: people are trying to kill you. You put your trust in Ben, but he betrayed you and broke your heart. Now you've escaped to New York City with a boy named Rafe, who says he remembers you from before. But the two of you are not safe. The same people who are after you are tailing Rafe as well. As the chase heats up, your memory starts to return, but your past cannot save you from the terrifying circumstances of your present, or the fact that one wrong move could end this game forever. 

With enemies on every side, and not a reprieve in sight, Deadfall will grab readers and refuse to let go. Perfect for fans of the Maze Runner series and the Legend series.

Book in One Word: Huh.

Despite its issues, I liked Blackbird. (And by that I mostly mean that it lacked that something to make me really care for a book.) Deadfall is pretty much in the same boat as its predecessor--this series is just missing a connection and the quality I need from a book to have much interest in it--but I think I liked it more. What this series does accomplish is having a quick, on-your-toes page-turner quality you might find from thrillers, and the concept is pretty interesting. But again--something with this series just doesn't cut it.

Deadfall starts right about where Blackbird left off. (If you haven't read Blackbird, beware of spoilers, at least in this paragraph.) Sunny found out Ben had been lying to her the whole time (that's fun), and is once again on the run and can trust basically no one. But before she boards a train heading off to another state, she sees someone she recognizes...and that's about where I have to stop telling you about Deadfall because I'll spoil the whole thing. The biggest difference between Blackbird and Deadfall is that now we actually know things. Well, not really--we, as well as the characters, are still looking for a lot of answers (spoilers spoilers spoilers for Blackbird): Who are they really? Why are people hunting them? (I find that concept VERY interesting.) What happened on the island? How can they stop AAE, the group behind the hunting? And so on and so forth. Blackbird was more of a setup as Sunny starts to get her bearings, and in Deadfall we get to see more of the falling action as a conclusion and answers--hopefully--near. Really, I think this series would benefit by having a prequel that should be read after the first two books, and is all about the island. I really want to know more about what happened on the island and I think it would be super interesting. It would also help make it easier to care about some of the characters, because as is, with the second person POV and the way it's written, it's hard to really care about and feel for certain characters, especially when they're in peril.

You might be wondering why I even bothered with Deadfall after the basically "meh" Blackbird. It's like I said--I did like it. And after finishing, I do feel a bit of something, and it was just a little bit difficult to put down. These books just have a sort of engaging quality brought to them because of the premise, but the execution stops it being from holy-shit-slapjack amazing. I can see where the use of second person works--Sunny doesn't know who she is and is trying to figure everything out, so using "you" keeps her more general and mysterious. But for storytelling, I think it takes away from any emotional aspects of the story. It's kind of just there. It's a little bit more than telling, but the potential is there. I love books that just have this on-the-run element and that are such quick reads, and I really liked that about Deadfall. But it just has this void where emotion and connections should be.

Deadfall brought answers yet didn't. I don't fully understand some things that happened or WHY some things happened, but I expected just a little bit more from the ending. Still, I liked this. It was pretty fast paced with some predictability, and it had some interesting things going on (and one was unnecessary and, um, why was I a little sad, and another literally had me say OH, BARF out loud). My favorite thing about this series is probably how fast fast fast it is, and also the whole spoilery thing that's happening to the characters--but I wish it was explored more because holy crap that's super interesting. Deadfall wasn't a disappointment because I don't know that I really had any expectations for it, but if I did, I'd say they were exceeded just a bit.

Did I like it? Yes.
Did I love it? No.
Would I reread it? No.
Would I purchase it? Meh.
Who would I recommend it to? Fans of fast-paced books that need lots of answers and feature characters on the run.

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.

1 comment:

  1. I felt exactly the same way about this book, I, too, thought it would have really helped to have a prequel. I was interested in the characters, and interested in what they went through on the island, but because of the fast pacing there was never really a minute to dig into all that as much as I wanted it to.


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