This book contained some really cool concepts, which were lost so the author could develop an angst filled love triangle between Reese and Amber and Reese and David.
I picked this up from the library, and I have not read the first novel, Adaptation. While I don't believe it was necessary to read Adaptation first, the only indication that this was a series was inside the cover at the bottom. I admit I only read the outside, which indicated nothing about this being book 2. Most books make this a little more obvious, but ok.
The book starts off pretty promising with a spacecraft hovering over Reese's home. It quickly goes to the theme of David and Reese's high school romance. Reese had a lot of body image concerns, and these concerns translated quickly into concerns about David being more popular than she was. Then it quickly comes to her that David was still worried about her feelings over her relationship with Amber, which actually was expressed as making her feel better about herself because David was jealous. That was just pretty horrible, goody David is jealous. Reese proved to be a horrible person in many ways. She lies to David about Amber. Then she gets caught. In between her lying about her relationships, she is telling her own parents that they can't get back together, because she will be the one left to pick up the pieces. I cannot emphasize enough how much I disliked Reese. If this was what the author was intending, bravo, Reese did not have one redeeming quality. I kept hoping the author would give Amber and David new love interests.
As far as the science fiction portion of this story, this was slowly doled out to us from the Imrians, Julian and his journalistic sources, and a random female soldier. They don't discover anything. It is just TOLD to us as background to the really stupid love triangle. We also aren't given any real details. Even the parts explained to us, the readers, by the Imrian are just glossed over. We don't actually learn anything. To prove how bad this book was, I would like to point out that the super secret, murky government organization, Corporation for American Security and Sovereignty (CASS), just presents themselves to David and Reese. Then they confess all of their nefarious actions. In a better written book, the super secret organization would never come forward and confess that they exist, but this isn't a well written book. The author couldn't come up with a way for this to be discovered, so it is told to David and Reese. Now, why does CASS out themselves? They want to learn what David and Reese are being taught and what they can do. They also want a picture of the adaptation chamber. Ummm, taking a picture of the adaptation chamber is meaningless dear author. A picture won't tell them how it works or how to make one. I'll take a picture of my microwave. Now, does this tell you how the microwave works or how to build one? NO, NO, NO! As I said, this was just the background to the real story about the love triangle. Sadly, because the science fiction portion of this book was soooo poorly developed, there are 9 pages at the end of the book devoted to "news/blog articles" explaining to us what had really been going on.
BIG SPOILER: I am going to discuss the love triangle, and the thing that really, really irked me cannot be discussed without a big spoiler. You need to stop here if you don't want to read a spoiler.
Everyone on Kurra does it. When Amber explained to Reese that she can have her cake and eat it too, I just wanted to throw up. On Kurra, everyone has multiple partners because if you really love someone you want them to be happy. Translation: If you cannot give up David, I am willing to share, because sharing you is better than nothing. This was presented as the Imrian ability to share your emotions telepathically makes you better able to empathize with others. However, the author also shows us that it has NOT removed the emotions of jealousy and anger. The only way this would truly work is if the Imrians were selfless. They are not. The author makes it emphatically clear that Reese does not have what it takes. Under this scenario, David should be able to have an additional girlfriend, so he won't be unhappy about having to share Reese, but Reese was obviously very jealous of David's prior girlfriend. Also under this scenario, Reese's dad should have been able to be with her mom as well as the other woman, but Reese was still obviously bitter about that other woman. If Amber truly wanted Reese happy, she should have been willing to step aside. Aaaah, it didn't happen that way because Amber isn't selfless. It is explained that this is okay on Kurra because no one has babies; they are manufactured. (Please note, the Imria stated they came to earth because they weren't having children. It was never stated that they were sterile. It was just stated that their birth rate had fallen. Maybe this was why.) The only thing I take from this is that on Kurra you are not required to make a decision. You can like everyone. And you can add as many people as you want to your love nest, because on Kurra if you love someone they are allowed as many partners as they want. It is a nymphomaniacs paradise.
Actually, I just viewed this as a device that allowed the author not to have to make a decision.
If you are reading this for the science fiction, you need to go elsewhere. If you are reading this because it is LGBT, the LGBT was limited, and since I disliked Reese as a character, I did not want to see her with anyone. The romance in this book was a big failure, whether it was heterosexual or homosexual. As for the characters, this story was primarily about Reese, and she was circled by all the other characters. Reese was a failure as a character, and the book only casually addressed the other characters.
Ugh, I did not like this book. As I wrote this review, I decided it was not even a two star book. This is just horrible, so one star for this trash.