***Disclaimer: I recieved a free eARC of The Similars from Net Galley and the publisher for review purposes.
The Similars is a Sci-Fi novel set in the future of Earth. The story follows Emmaline who attends the prestigious Darkwood Academy. It is a boarding school for the elite of the elite. Each student is special in some way in that they have some talent that helped them get admitted past just being extra smart. Emma is returning to Darkwood for her senior year but there are two things she is going to have to cope with: the suicide of her best friend, Oliver, and the fact that six clones (the similars) will be attending Darkwood with her. This was fine until it turned out that one of the clones is Oliver’s. There is a lot of controversy surrounding the clones and initially Emma couldn’t be bothered about it. However, she quickly gets sucked into the conspiracy surrounding them and the school.
The Similars was a fascinating story. I gave it four out of five stars on Goodreads because I thoroughly enjoyed it. The story took me a little bit to get into but once I got into it, I could not put it down. I was caught up in the conspiracy and I needed to know what was going on. Why were the similars so weird? Why were they the clones of only those specific students at the school? I had a lot of questions, and fortunately a good chunk of them got answered, which is always satisfying. The story kept me guessing and then the ending had me eagerly anticipating the sequel and considering the book doesn’t come out until January 2019, I am going to be waiting a long time.
I really liked the set up of the world Emma lived in. The story was futuristic, but it was realistically futuristic. What I mean is that it felt like the technological advancements that the characters used and interacted with, seemed completely likely that we would have them. The AI technology seems to be something that we will achieve eventually (whether that’s good or bad) and all of it just seemed like the path that we will follow technologically speaking. I also appreciated the way that things weren’t overly explained. The science was there, it seemed to make sense, but the story didn’t talk down to us. I enjoyed the characters and it was really interesting to explore Emma’s grief over her friend Oliver, but also her friendship with her only other friend. I liked the aspect of cloning, because I haven’t read too many novels where that features heavily into the plot. It felt fresh and original. I also enjoyed how realistic the world felt. It made sense to me that people would be prejudiced against something they were unfamiliar with and that happened in the story with the clones and certain parts of the school turning against them.
So why four stars you might ask? Well, the slow start. It took me a little while to feel hooked by the novel despite the premise being really intriguing. I find for a five star read I need to be gripped all the way through and really blown away. I definitely had a great time reading The Similars but the book didn’t completely blow me away. I just wanted something a little bit more gripping at the start of it. That being said, I do think the story started appropriately, it just didn’t fully pull me in like I had hoped. It made up for it in the end.
I definitely think that this book will do well when it comes out, and I recommend that you pick it up and read it when it comes out next January. I think I will be grabbing my own physical copy when it comes out so I can have it and re-read it as a physical copy. So please join me and read it when it comes out because it deserves a lot of hype and love.
Thanks again to the publishers for giving me an early copy!
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