Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Review: Pivot Point


11988046Title: Pivot Point
Author: Kasie West
Genre: Young adult, science fiction

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:
Knowing the outcome doesn’t always make a choice easier . . .
Addison Coleman’s life is one big “What if?” As a Searcher, whenever Addie is faced with a choice, she can look into the future and see both outcomes. It’s the ultimate insurance plan against disaster. Or so she thought. When Addie’s parents ambush her with the news of their divorce, she has to pick who she wants to live with—her father, who is leaving the paranormal compound to live among the “Norms,” or her mother, who is staying in the life Addie has always known. Addie loves her life just as it is, so her answer should be easy. One Search six weeks into the future proves it’s not.
In one potential future, Addie is adjusting to life outside the Compound as the new girl in a Norm high school where she meets Trevor, a cute, sensitive artist who understands her. In the other path, Addie is being pursued by the hottest guy in school—but she never wanted to be a quarterback’s girlfriend. When Addie’s father is asked to consult on a murder in the Compound, she’s unwittingly drawn into a dangerous game that threatens everything she holds dear. With love and loss in both lives, it all comes down to which reality she’s willing to live through . . . and who she can’t live without.
I picked this book up because I had heard nothing but good things about it and I needed something short and fast to read after plodding through two really large/dense books (A Dance with Dragons and MaddAddam in case you were wondering). While this book was fast, it wasn't as good as I had hoped it would be.

I'm trying not to be dismissive of this book simply because it's YA - I've read a lot of excellent YA that really makes you think and tackles issues and ideas that adult fiction is often too formulaic or too constricted by genre to deal with. Even without those heavy ideas, there is plenty of YA that is just fun to read. This book had a lot of potential, and it really seemed like it could be both fun and interesting, but in the end it wasn't either.

Addie is part of a secret community of paranormal people. Her power is Divergence, which means she can see the two outcomes of her choices before she makes them. The book opens with a bombshell choice - her parents are getting divorced, and Addie has to decide which one to live with. Of course, she uses her trusty super-power to figure out which path would be better, and of course there is a lot more hinging on her decision than she initially realizes.

I liked the characters in the novel - they were pretty realistic, and they had their own quirks and endearing qualities. Addie has been raised by parents who can detect lies or persuade her to do things, so she is obviously very obedient. Still, she struggles with doing what she wants to and what is expected of her, which is something I could relate to. Her friend Laila is the stereotypical loud and proud best friend who can erase memories. There's the jock football star, Duke, and the only non-paranormal main character, Trevor. Oh, and there is also a psychopath.

Afterthought much? That's what the entire plot felt like to me. Addie sees some pretty horrific outcomes involving a psychopath but decides that there's nothing she can do about it and just makes a personal decision, hoping things will work themselves out. Most of the story focuses on her relationship with her friends, and while a lot of those little moments were adorable (Trevor! Be my best friend!), it was just bizarre to me that Addie doesn't do anything about the guy who's responsible for murder. I felt cheated because most of the book was just showing the two different outcomes of her decision, and the final chapter was just like "oh look, everything happened according to plan." Granted, the decision become more complicated than I expected it to be, but I felt like the majority of the book was just filler because half of it never happened.

This started out as a fun and fluffy book, but just ended up being a little one the ridiculous side. I don't think I'll be picking the next book up.


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