Monday, January 31, 2011

XVI - Julia Karr

Every girl gets one. 
An XVI tattoo on the wrist--sixteen.
They say they're there for protection.

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. 

Title: XVI
Author: Julia Karr
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian
Publisher: Speak
Publication Date: January 6, 2011
Format: ARC
Source: Received from publicist. Many thanks goes to Vimala from Penguin Canada for sending me a copy of this book for review. I received this book free of charge in exchange for an honest review. 
Look for it: Amazon, Book Depository
Challenge: Debut Author Challenge 
My rating: 4/5

Nina's not like other girls. Most girls her age are looking forward to turning sixteen. Being sixteen means that they will finally be legal, able to have sex. Nina's not so sure she wants to have sex, and she's dreading her sixteenth birthday. Already boys are noticing her, and she doesn't like it. With one blow, Nina's life falls apart around her and she is left to pick up the pieces, all the while questioning everything she thought she knew. Nina's going to need some help figuring out what to do now, while questioning the past, but at least there might be someone who has some answers for her in that regard.
I was intrigued by the synopsis of XVI as it handles the topic of sex in a realistic albeit futuristic atmosphere. Nina is a strong, decisive character, one who doesn't want to succumb to the pressures of those around her. Sex, for her, is something that she regards as special. It's not something that she wants to be party to when she turns sixteen. Especially knowing that once that tattoo is on her wrist, she is fair game, whether she is willing or not. I liked the familial ties that Nina had to her grandparents, and to her sister. They seem to have a strong bond even though her grandfather takes his leg off once in a while--just to keep things entertaining. Nina's friends are also a large part of what I enjoyed about the book. I loved their camaraderie, and how they stood up for Nina when things got scary. They all brought something to the table. 
Though I enjoyed the book, it took me a while to get used to the writing style. Towards the middle though, everything seemed to come together, and I couldn't get enough. 
I will say that readers may be in for a surprise while reading the book as I found myself under extreme emotions at different stages in the book. I can't wait to read the follow up to XVI as I want to know what happens next for Nina, her family, and her friends. I hope she does get the answers she needs. 
All in all, a stimulating and addictive read, XVI may shock some readers as it is set in a not too distant future; and it mirrors certain character traits that are present in today's society. An eye-opener of a read, but one I think that should be read. Fans of the dystopian genre will be sure to enjoy this one. 

1 comment:

Tasha said...

I'm really looking forward to reading this book. Thanks for sharing a great review.