Monday, August 22, 2011

Possession by Elana Johnson

Vi knows the Rule: Girls don't walk with boys, and they never even think about kissing them. But no one makes Vi want to break the Rules more than Zenn...and since the Thinkers have chosen him as Vi's future match, how much trouble can one kiss cause? The Thinkers may have brainwashed the rest of the population, but Vi is determined to think for herself.

But the Thinkers are unusually persuasive, and they're set on convincing Vi to become one of them...starting by brainwashing Zenn. Vi can't leave Zenn in the Thinkers' hands, but she's wary of joining the rebellion, especially since that means teaming up with Jag. Jag is egotistical, charismatic, and dangerous--everything Zenn's not. Vi can't quite trust Jag and can't quite resist him, but she also can't give up on Zenn.

This is a game of control or be controlled. And Vi has no choice but to play.

Title: Possession 
Author: Elana Johnson
Publication: 07th June 2011
Publisher: Simon & Schuster 
416 pages

This book is a stand-alone novel, but a companion will be released in 2012. It won't be the same characters but we will nonetheless have some answers.

My review

I don't like being disappointed in a book, I always feel a bit guilty about that because behind a book there's a lot of work, from the author firstly, but also from the publisher and a lot of people are involved. It requires months and months of work for many people. Moreover, the book is like the author's baby, something in which he put all his heart. Wouldn't you feel like a nasty person if you told a parent that their child was ugly? Yeah that's a bit what I'm feeling right now. I'm really sorry because this review will be more negative than positive. However, I have seen a lot of eager reviews, from people whom I trust and very often share the opinion. So, I think that's just me, perhaps it's just that this book was not for me and you may love it.

Possession has great potential, nearly all the reviews I've seen are positive, especially the reviews of people who have all my confidence. However, it didn't work for me and I think that its potential is not fully exploited. I was not able at all to dive into the story and to appreciate the universe and atmosphere created by Elana Johnson.

My main problem came from the writing. I found it sometimes a bit disjointed, confused and unclear. In the first quarter of this novel, I did not understand a thing. I didn't understand at all where the author was getting at, I could not imagine and visualize this world, I was totally lost and nothing made sense. Elena Johnson mentions a whole lot of high-tech equipments, characters, places, and I never manage to really clear up all the ins and outs. The construction of Possession's society and universe is, in my opinion, a bit neglected to focus more on the characters, who, on the contrary, are really well-written and developed.

The transitions are sometimes a bit messy and I was occasionally a bit confused because there were no links between the scenes or time. In fact, it feels as if some parts of the story, where the explanations should have been, were missing. And how can you fully appreciate a novel when you do not understand half of it? I am apparently one of the few to have had that impression so I may be too dumb (or maybe too blonde). If it gets a bit better in the rest of the book, I never managed to fully understand some actions and passages. 

On the other hand, and that's why I think that Possession has potential, even though I was not able to dive into this world, the characters are endearing and appealing. Moreover, the dystopia is really interesting. Vi is the kind of female character that I really like. Indeed, she is amazing. She is strong, determined and really brave. Jag is also the kind of male hero that I totally like. In the beginning he is really mysterious, but the reader discover him, more and more. If you do not like love triangles, I think that Possession may not be for you because there is also an other male interest, namely Zenn who is quite important to the story.

The plot is fast-paced, there are a lot of twists, mysteries and suspense. Possession is quite action-packed, and intense. I think that after reading the ending and the denouement you will most likely be totally stunned. Indeed, it is relatively unexpected, unpredictable (except a few pages before, but not earlier) and utterly surprising. On the contrary, some other events are a bit predictable. The dialogues are really enjoyable and often sarcastic. Finally, the universe and the atmosphere are relatively original. 

To sum up, I think that Possession was just not for me, especially because I've seen a lot of positive reviews. I feel as if I have not enjoyed this book as much as I should have. The ending will leave you totally amazed and stunned. I was utterly surprised to see that the author has made this choice and has chosen to let the readers and her characters in this situation. A companion book will be released in June 2012 and even if I was a bit disappointed in this first instalment, I'm nonetheless really curious to see what it holds for the readers and the characters.

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