Monday, March 25, 2013

Review: Numbers by Rachel Ward

Numbers (Numbers, #1)Title:  Numbers 
Author: Rachel Ward
Publishing Date:  February 1st 2011
Pages: 325
Genre:  YA Paranormal Thriller
Series: Numbers #1
Source: Audio


Starred by PW and SLJ! Now in paperback, Rachel Ward's gripping debut psycho-thriller that pairs futuristic sci-fi with a tender, touchingly real love story. Includes a teaser to the sequel!

Ever since the day her mother died, Jem has known about the numbers. Numbers that pop into her head when she looks into someone's eyes. They're dates, the numbers. Dates predicting with brute accuracy each person's death. Burdened by such horrible knowledge, Jem avoids relationships. Until she meets Spider, another outsider, and takes a chance. Maybe they can find happiness together, if only in the brief time that remains before his expiration date. But on a trip to London, Jem foresees a chilling chain of events: The city's a target. The clock's running out. The countdown is on to a blowup!.

This book has been on my TBR for a very long time and I have also had the audio for quite some time. I am not sure why it took me so long to get to this book, but I finally was able to make time for it. I really enjoyed the book. It was different than what I expected. I thought it would be a book about Jem stopping the attack and that is not what I found. The book is more of a on the run, trying to escape book. It was good, really good and I very much enjoyed the way the book was written and the way the story was told.

Jem has a special gift. She can look in anyone’s eyes and see the date they will die. She doesn’t know what she should do with this gift, why she has it, and how to live with it. She was left an orphan at a very young age and since then she refused to build any type of relationship. She can’t seem to allow someone into her heart if she can see their number, the day they will die. She has blocked herself off, until she meets Spider. Another misfit thug who she feels a strong pull towards. The only problem she sees his number, and she doesn’t want to be hurt. She finds herself spending time with him not matter how much she doesn’t want to and on one of their “outings” she sees that there will be massive death this day on the London Eye. This puts her and Spider in a terrible spot when they are seen running from the eye moments before it explodes. The only known suspects or witnesses they are now on the run together.

I was really into this pretty near the beginning. It was a bit slow at first, but once the London Eye incident occurs, it sped up and I couldn’t put it down. It’s a thrilling read and an emotional roller coaster ride. It’s a journey for Jem and who she is. There are so many layers to the book it’s pretty insane. It’s about loss, finding yourself, dealing with what you been given, and allowing love inside. I found myself laughing and crying as Jem’s story unfolded.

Jem is a great character for character growth. I didn’t like her at first. She was hard, cold, distant, and quite a bit of a whiner. Throughout the book she slowly changed, most of due to Spider. She learned to accept, to live, and to love. I really hated how cold she was but I understood it. I don’t think I could live with the reality of knowing when someone would die, especially if I cared for them. So I believe I would have shut myself off from everyone too. Jem brings up some very good points that make her gift a burden. One that really stuck to me was if she did fall in love and get married and have children. How could she look that newborn baby in her arms and see her child’s number. I could not live with that. With that said she was very cold and distant and when she did change it was more the sweeter. It’s been a while since I have seen so much character growth.

Spider was also a great character. He was given a pretty hard hand in life too but the difference between him and Jem (besides Jem’s gift) he had a loving grandmother raise him. Spider was loved and he could love, but he didn’t make the best of decisions. Putting himself in a life of crime had a lot to do with the circumstances him and Jem were in throughout the book. What I really loved about Spider was the way he card for Jem, his patience with her, and how easy it was for him to fall into her life without being pushy or insistent.
The book had a bunch of action, running, fighting, but it was more a coming of age book for me. I think the characters made the story for sure. It was written well and the writing style put me right into Jem and Spider’s world easily. The dialect, the setting, the grittiness of the story made it all so much more real.

I wish the pacing would have been more consistent and the ending a bit different…. But all in all it was a great read. A bit of action, suspense, thrills, drama, romance, and paranormal all in one.

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