Today I bring a book that has the most stunning cover of all times! And I know I say that a lot but honestly, I fell in love with the book because of the cover. I saw it on a friends bookstagram and I was sold. I wanted that book so badly and I didn't even know what it was about yet! I'm talking about Children of Eden by Joey Graceffa and Laura L. Sullivan! Also, Joey is a Youtuber, something I didn't know!
Honestly, I don't know how to feel about this book. I went in with high expectations, the subject about a world after, the world being death but there's still something there that awaits the newborn word. It all sounds so good for a book but I've been left with a mixed feeling!
First of all, I found it really hard to connect with the main character, Rowan. She's a second child and her desperation to breath air from outside her house is totally understandable. At times she just seemed really too desperate and that made me back off a bit. What I did love about her is her determination, during the story she'll receive new information about her being the second child from her mother and this will set everything into motion. Although she loves her mother and her twin brother, Ash, she can't be bothered with staying inside anymore. Another thing that shows her determination is that she'll fight for her loved ones, even if it brings herself in danger.
I loved it that the character started deciding things for herself and that she took her life into her own hands, although I would've done it a bit more prepared! Rowan is more the thinking and directly doing which is a nice trait for a character but not something I can really relate with. Rowan hasn't got a clue to how people act, what to do herself and so on, yet she finds a friend of her bother who'll help her out.
Which brings me to the next character: Lark. Lark is a friend of Ash and I did NOT like this character at all. She's too possessive, she feels like a know-it-all and as if she knows what's best. I just couldn't love this character at all, sure she has a big influence on the story but I just felt like she was a bit insane. Lark also comes into the story at times that I didn't think were very logical with the rest of the story and I just really couldn't appreciate this character. If all, she made things harder.
There will be a few more characters coming and going and there's one very important one coming but I don't want to go too much into detail because that character was a surprise that I did see coming but still made this book better!
As for the plot, now here were things that went completely wrong for me personally! The story builds up so rapidly, there was no time for making the events evolve and to make you feel it. I'm not a real fan of stories that go really fast but if you are, then this one is one you'll enjoy. I was just really bothered by how fast everything goes, there was no time to stop and think or feel what might happen next, because the following event was already happening.
Secondly I like to say that I am left with too many questions to feel satisfied. During the plot we'll meet new characters that each have their own mission, we'll find out secrets about the founder of Eden, we get new details and nobody does anything with it. The ending did not give me answers on how they'll get around to that mission or what they'll do with that new information they have gathered. I know nothing and that really bothered me a lot. Also the end... oh god the ending! We know new information again yet again we will never know an answer! This is what they call an "open end" and I know that, but I hate open endings. And I hate this one most because on top of the open ending, I know nearly nothing about my other questions I thought I'd receive answers for.
Of course I want to also add the things I did really enjoy and first of all that must be the theme. It's a dystopian about the world in the future, we destroyed and someone saved the last bit of humanity. For me that's a very interesting thing. Especially because also the people are being ranked! The poor live in the outer circles, the rich in the inner circles. I love it when books do that because it immediately sets off a vibe about that world. Also, just the thought of our world destroyed and a new place to wait for the world to be reborn is something I absolutely enjoyed. The nature being affected by us and the results of it will get a personal spot and we'll see consequences and everything put into perspective. How they have resolved everything will also be explained well and I was keen on that part. I know this book is fictitious but I also like to say that what happens to nature and humankind in the book is not something that I don't see in the near future. All is possible.
Also another great thing is: everybody lies to everybody and nobody is trustworthy! When a book gives off that vibe, I can't do anything but feel happy. Rowan is a second child, she should not trust anybody and she should be aware of being lied to. Yet Rowan also has never been outside her house, she doesn't know the outer world and how people work. This sets off a nice contrast between knowing how everything goes and not knowing. She's a bit on an exploring adventure and makes mistakes everyone in her position would make: trust people. Especially in a world where second children aren't allowed or will be murdered, where the poor don't get anything and the inner circle everything, trust is not a word you should use. Lies will be everywhere in this book and trustworthy people will be so hard find and I really wish the book would have gone further on it and provide more buildup around this but it all stayed fairly superficial.
What are we missing in this world? Action, but no worries there is going to be so much! First of all, Rowan will have to escape that's the first action we see. Then she comes across greenshirts, these are authority figures, police really and they know she's a second child so she needs to escape once again! Now she's known, her family will be in danger and this makes sure there's going to be a rescue party. That rescue party, ladies and gentlemen, was the best part filled with action because it was so good. There was so much surprise in this part and I was so excited when they went to rescue the family. It was great! For action you'll be good in this book, but as I said before it comes together way too fast in my opinion.
Lastly, what is a book without a bit of romance. Now this romance was... I don't know. I was ready to pull out all of my hair! I was so frustrated! Probably because I shipped Rowan with one of them and not the other one, but she just kept giving signs to that other person I don't like! Still with me? No? There's a love triangle people and it's amazing that it makes you so frustrated! Especially if you have a ship and disgust the other character! Yet I wonder if it's really about romance.
Rowan gives us signs throughout the book that she doesn't know how this works. She doesn't know anything about people and she thinks it's normal yet she doesn't know what these feelings she feels mean. It might be pure platonic then, or it might be love. This is something a bit confusing and also nothing we'll get any answers on.
I don't really know what to think about this book. I loved it but at the same time I didn't. It might be the fact that I didn't find it easy to connect with the main character, at the same time I was left with an ending that I didn't really love at all. Many things remain unresolved and that makes me not like the book. I did really enjoy the dystopian world that's created in this book and lies to its population that's been ranked. Everyone lies to everyone and trusting someone can be a mistake and I love it when a book give you that vibe.
Also the whole concept about the world being destroyed by us is a very interesting subject and also gets a nice light onto it! However the book builds up fairly rapid and leaves me disappointed because I didn't receive the answers I was looking for. To conclude this I just like to say that I don't think it's bad but also don't think it's the best and I am left undecided. I do recommend reading the book because it's possible you'll love it, especially if you're into books that create a dystopian about the future and if you don't mind a rapid buildup.
“But alone is good. Alone is safe.”