ReWired by S. R. Johannes

“‘Delving into the world of underground hacking, REWIRED crackles with tension. I loved every cyber-second I was immersed in Ada’s world!’— Kimberly Derting, author of YA thriller series’ The Body Finder, The Pledge, and The Taking.

16-year-old Ada Lovelace is never more alive and sure of herself than when she’s hacking into a “secure” network as her alter ego, the Dark Angel. In the real world, Ada is broken, reeling from her best friend Simone’s recent suicide. But online, the reclusive daughter of Senator Lovelace (champion of the new Technology Privacy Bill) is a daring white hat hacker and the only female member of the Orwellians, an elite group responsible for a string of high-profile hacks against major corporations, with a mission to protect the little guy.

Ada is swiftly proving she’s a force to be reckoned with, when a fellow Orwellian betrays her to the FBI. To protect her father’s career, Ada is sent to ReBoot, a technology rehab facility for teens…the same rehab Simone attended right before killing herself.

It’s bad enough that the ReBoot facility is creepy in an Overlook-Hotel-meets-Winchester-Mansion way, but when Ada realizes Simone’s suicide is just one in an increasingly suspicious string of “accidental” deaths and “suicides” occurring just after kids leave ReBoot, Ada knows she can’t leave without figuring out what really happened to her best friend. The massive cyber conspiracy she uncovers will threaten everything she cares about–her dad’s career, her new relationship with a wry, handsome, reformed hacker, Fisher, who gets under her skin, and most of all–the Dark Angel.

With a deliciously twisty plot, the topical bite of Cory Doctorow’s LITTLE BROTHER, ReWIRED delves into technology addiction, internet privacy, and corporate/government collection of data.

ReWIRED is about the daily choices we all make about who we want to be, how much of ourselves we choose to share with others, and the terrifying risks and exhilarating rewards of being ourselves, online and off.”

-Synopsis taken from Goodreads

Hey guys! Meaghan here with another review! This time I’ve got another ARC from Netgalley, and read it with Allison!

First off, I would like to thank the publisher and author for providing me this ARC to review. Please note that the version I read was an advanced copy, and certain events/language may be changed in the published edition.

Stars (Out of 10): 3/10 Stars

Spoiler Free: I wanted to like this book, as the concept seemed super neat and reminded me of books such as The Program and Dark Eden, but the execution was just terrible.

I believe I saw somewhere that this is a re-release of a story originally written in 2012, so maybe that’s part of it, it just didn’t age well. And if I’m being honest, many parts of the story did feel pretty dated. (EDIT: I now know that this is incorrect, and rather some of the reviews at the beginning of my copy were misleading. Regardless, I still find the references and some of the tropes outdated. In writing in such a quickly changing area, it’s pretty important to either invent new references that cannot become outdated, or ensure any references used (such as the fact that everyone listened to Daft Punk in this book) are as relevant as possible. In my opinion, anytime popular culture is involved, you always run the risk of it being cringy, and unfortunately almost all of the pop culture use in this book was.)

But even if the story had been written now, with references that worked still in today’s time, the over-stereotyped characters matched with the juvenile, and at times, contradicting writing also would have made me rate this book the way I did.

Specifically in terms of characters, it was kind of ridiculous, and at times insulting, how certain types of characters were categorized. We have Varian, the gamer obsessed with WOW and changed his real-life name to his character one, who only dresses in black and wears a trench coat? We also have Raven, a punk looking girl who our narrator hates from the start because of how off-putting she is. And it continues on, with the stereotyped cheerleader and the lanky, quiet guy. Lastly, the most likable character is the dead best friend, as she is given the most characterization, even when compared to the narrator. (Also, there’s a lot of crying and emotions in this book that feel very fake and extreme.

In addition, we have a random romance thrown in that is very on and off and reminds me a lot of younger high school relationships. It honestly was all over the place, and without it, I probably would’ve rated the book higher.

Back to writing, it felt simple, and while this was good during the explanation of confusing, techy moments, it just contributed to the dated feeling of the entire novel. Additionally, I’m not sure if this book just hasn’t gone through any editing yet (have an ARC copy), but there was tons of errors that led to confusion during some scenes. But the main issue with the writing was how it contradicted itself sometimes, showing us one fact and then pulling an entirely different conclusion from it. (The most obvious example being a 3 day period shown, and then having that period being described as a week.)

Additionally, the ending left some things unresolved, and for a stand-alone book I find that very off putting. My favorite part about stand-alones is that they’re usually all wrapped up in a bow by the end of it, or at least don’t purposely introduce new “twists” in the last few chapters that never get resolved.

I do have to admit that the plot was semi intriguing though. The main reason I finished this off was because of the plot, and wanting to find out the secrets behind everything. If some of the other things above had been improved, I could see myself recommending this book based on plot alone. However, it is a package deal, and therefore I cannot recommend this book to people looking for a cool urban sci-fi.


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