As I have mentioned before, I am easily sucked in by a beautiful cover. I have to admit that I wasn't particularly captivated by the cover art or the title. The Socialpunk cover just didn't interest me. I didn't care for the yellow and green of the cover or the art. As for the title, it might have been fine if the cover was different, but combined with the lack of eye catching art, it just didn't work for me. I would not have picked this one off the shelf. I sincerely hope that others don't have the same reaction-
Since I was part of the blog tour, I thought I should at least skim the first chapter or two. Wow! I was halfway through the book before I knew it! It just sucked me right in and kept my attention. It also gave me plenty of concepts/questions to ponder when I wasn't reading.
Socialpunk is a dystopian young adult novel. While it has a few similarities to other books of that genre, it also is very original. Monica Leonelle, the author, created a world (s) with some interesting social structure and new technologies that captured my imagination . For example, the primary mode of transportation is running and characters are rewarded for how much influence you have over others with "clout" instead of money. The world building is well done and original.
The main character/hero of the book is Ima, an Asian American teenager. A refreshing change from the usual blonde, girl next door type. Ima did suffer from "reluctant hero syndrome", which seems to be a common ailment in many other books I have read lately. She really does become stronger and grow as a person (literally)as the story progresses. I always enjoy reading about strong female heroes and Ima eventually meets that criteria.
The other characters are also unique. Vaughn is my favorite character, because you don't know much about him. He is a man of few words, but he proves he has a good heart. His mysterious nature keeps the reader engaged and of course, mysterious men are always attractive. I hope we get to know him better in the next book in this series.
The writing is easy to read and the actions is nonstop. The plot is well thought out and revealed slowly, with just enough information to keep the reader involved and anticipating more.
There are some sexual encounters in this book that are essential to the plot. The sex is tastefully done, without too much detail. For this reason I would recommend the book for older high school aged children and up. Younger teens may also miss the social commentary which is one of the most important parts of this book. Be prepared for a cliffhanger ending that will leave you dying to read the next book! I can't wait the read the rest of this series!
Thanks to the author for the copy of this book. In return for the copy of the novel, I offer my unbiased review.