Publisher: AEC Stellar Publishing
My rating: 3 stars
In a future version on the United States which has been divided into 7 regions following an external economic crash, the population live in a police state led my a mystery figure known as Phelps, where they are subjected to strict rules and harsh recriminations for any infraction of the laws. The reason for these excessive laws is tomo – a drug with clairvoyant properties. The users of tomo caused an uprising which ended in a massacre and the subsequent way of life. This is the world of Sophia Gray. In addition to her father’s double life as a cross-border trafficker, her friends are involved in defying the state and its war on drugs. Into the picture comes Noah Tomery, a young man who is deeply entangled with the whole affair and who brings Sophia’s world crashing around her ears. Should she stay and submit to the status quo or should she fight for the people she loves?
I received this book from the author (here is her website) in return for a review. This made the whole review process difficult, since I don’t feel comfortable slating something when I have been in contact with the person who created it. Conversely, I don’t want to appear as though I am being overly favourable in gratitude for being asked to review it. So here follows my honest assessment.
There are some definite pros to Take Me Tomorrow. Thompson has come up with a good story and has, very impressively, managed to find a niche in a highly saturated genre – just think of The Hunger Games, the Divergent trilogy, the Maze Runner series…Additionally, it is refreshing to find that the heroine does not immediately fall for the handsome and brooding boy. Instead, like Katniss in The Hunger Games, she is fiercely independent. Content-wise, I was impressed by Thompson’s creativity and ingenuity.
The cons, however, come from the style of writing and the editing. Given my background in English Language and publishing I may be overly picky however there were some problems which really did affect my enjoyment of the story:
- There were far too many Americanisms for my liking. I’m aware that this is a personal preference rather than a failing on the author’s part, but I did find myself wincing over tortured phrases such as “Living in the Albany
Region was too distant of a past to recall”. While I am guilty of verbosity in my own writing, this was a little too much when it came to reading.
- Some of the word choices were just plain wrong. Take, for example,”the shudders were pearl-white”. I would assume that this was a typo, except for the fact that earlier I came across the phrase “windows spanned out over every floor, dark green shudders lining the brown exterior with frivolous decorations”. This takes me onto my third big issue:
- Oh my gosh, the hyperbole. And the adjectives. This is not a novel which believes “less is more”; instead, both nouns and verbs require embellishment.
- There is surprisingly little character development. The main actors are fleshed out, but some of the minor characters are left up to the reader’s imagination. I, for one, would have liked to know more about Sophia’s father. And who is this mysterious Phelps? He orchestrates most of the action, however we learn very little about his other than that he is a malevolent power.
Ok, I am probably being overly critical. This is a good story from a young writer, who I am sure will continue to mature. I hope this will turn out to be the first instalment in a series, since there are several loose ends which remain to be tied up. Had the writing style not irritated me quite so much, Take Me Tomorrow would probably have received 4 stars since it is well thought through and brings something new to a genre which runs the risk of becoming staid.
Verdict: Worth a read if you have a bit of time on your hands and want something light but a little different.
Recommendation: For another YA dystopian future book from a slightly less well-known author, try Delirium by Lauren Oliver