{Review} XVI by Julia Karr

XVI (XVI #1) by Julia Karr
Published: January 6th 2011
Publisher: Speak (Penguin)
ISBN: 0142417718 (ISBN13: 9780142417713)

Pages: 325
Source: Bought myself
Shelfability: Must read/Acquire
Rating: 4.5 Stars

Some girls can’t wait to be sixteen, to be legal. Nina is not one of them. Even though she has no choice in the matter, she knows that so long as her life continues as normal, everything will be okay.

Then, with one brutal strike, Nina’s normal is shattered; and she discovers that nothing that she believed about her life is true. But there’s one boy who can help–and he just may hold the key to her past. But with the line between attraction and danger as thin as a whisper, one thing is for sure… For Nina, turning sixteen promises to be anything but sweet

My Review:
I was very excited to start reading this book. Not because of the hype (was there some?) but because of the concept. Because just the synopsis was able to make me wonder about myself, our society and the world that awaits us. Nina lives in a nearly completely misogynistic dystopian world where the media and government work hand in hand. And honestly? It’s chilling to think of a world where that is reality. Julia Karr wrote a cautionary tale that resonates with the society in which we live. The bottom line is: Don’t let others think for you. Respect yourself and your individuality.
The plot was exciting in this book. Neatly paced with just enough to keep you hooked.The characters were diverse in their personalities. The classes and different backgrounds were thoroughly thought out. And there was mystery and adventure and romance! I sped through it and I was happy I did! Totally worth it. Although Nina’s bestfriend, Sandy, was ridiculously naive, clueless and with all her “Media” acquired “personality”, she turned out plain and annoying to me. Also, how quickly did Nina replace her with Wei!? It was a little too quick and easy for Nina if you ask me.
The concept behind the book is what gives it such a high score. I believe this book should be read in high school.
What I loved:

  • The society
  • The mystery surrounding Nina’s father
  • The pacing 
  • The action scenes (totally realistic. Nina isn’t a martial arts expert and she doesn’t “suddenly” become one either.)
  • The romance. (I am a sucker)

What I didn’t like:

  • The cluelessness of some characters
  • the useless crushes. (waste of pages)
Final Nifty Rating:
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