Sunday, February 16, 2014

Book Review: Vitro

On Skin Island, even the laws of creation can be broken.

On a remote island in the Pacific, Corpus scientists have taken test tube embryos and given them life. These beings—the Vitros—have knowledge and abilities most humans can only dream of. But they also have one enormous flaw.

Sophie Crue is determined to get to Skin Island and find her mother, a scientist who left Sophie behind years ago. With the help of Jim Julien, a young charter pilot, she arrives--and discovers a terrifying secret she never imagined: she has a Vitro twin, Lux, who is the culmination of Corpus's dangerous research.
Now Sophie is torn between reuniting with the mother who betrayed her and protecting the genetically enhanced twin she never knew existed. But untangling the twisted strands of these relationships will have to wait, for Sophie and Jim are about to find out what happens when science stretches too far beyond its reach.  Quoted from Goodreads


Vitro was a really fun action/adventure, very similar to Origin, while having just about no overlap whatsoever.  Technically it's a companion book, but none of the characters, locations, or experiments overlap, just the big, bad company.  Still, if you liked Origin, I would absolutely pick up Vitro and vice versa.

This book really is one thing after another, never really giving you a moment to catch your breath.  It's told in alternating POVs between Sophie and Jim, and while each POV furthers the story along, you can't help turning pages to get back to the other character, because almost every chapter ends in some type of peril or cliff-hanger. 

I really enjoyed both Sophie and Jim.  Much of their relationship is based on childhood memories, but you could see their connection and even loyalty to each other, despite the years they've been apart.  Plus, with a few minor exceptions, they're both smart, capable characters thrust into a situation neither of them ever would have imagined, and I liked the way they handled the the circumstances of Skin Island.  They aren't as developed as they could be, but it's pretty much par for the course for action/adventure books.

The writing is excellent, immersing you as a reader into the rich world of Skin Island, so you really get a feel of where everything is taking place. The setting and atmosphere are particularly well done, as are the twists. Sure, a few of them I saw coming, but there were a couple that really took me by surprise and kept me, as a reader, on my toes.  

Basically this is everything you could want in an action/adventure book.  Exotic location? Check.  Plenty of  plot twists? Check. Potential for widespread catastrophe? Check. Cutting edge/pseudo science? Check. Love interest? Check.  Character growth? Check. Abundant explosions and gunfights? Check.  Mistaken identity? Check. Truly evil antagonist you can really hate? Check. Secondary antagonist who's morally ambiguous and you can't quite hate though part of you thinks you should? Check.

If you're looking for a fun, action packed, stand alone (or very loose companion if you want to get technical) look no further. I'm giving this book a high 3.5, and I'm hoping Jessica Khoury writes more adventures in this world. There are a few people left I'd really like to see get their comeuppance.

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