Reboot by Amy Tintera
Rebel by Amy Tintera
"Five years ago, Wren Connolly was shot three times in the chest. After 178 minutes she came back as a Reboot: stronger, faster, able to heal, and less emotional. The longer Reboots are dead, the less human they are when they return. Wren 178 is the deadliest Reboot in the Republic of Texas. Now seventeen years old, she serves as a soldier for HARC (Human Advancement and Repopulation Corporation).
Wren’s favorite part of the job is training new Reboots, but her latest newbie is the worst she’s ever seen. As a 22, Callum Reyes is practically human. His reflexes are too slow, he’s always asking questions, and his ever-present smile is freaking her out. Yet there’s something about him she can’t ignore. When Callum refuses to follow an order, Wren is given one last chance to get him in line—or she’ll have to eliminate him. Wren has never disobeyed before and knows if she does, she’ll be eliminated, too. But she has also never felt as alive as she does around Callum.
The perfect soldier is done taking orders."- Reboot summary from Goodreads
"After coming back from death as Reboots and being trained by HARC as soldiers, Wren and Callum have finally escaped north, where they hope to find a life of freedom. But when they arrive at the Reboot Reservation, it isn't what they expected. Under the rule of a bloodthirsty leader, Micah, the Reboots are about to wage an all-out war on the humans. Although Wren's instincts are telling her to set off into the wilderness on their own and leave the battle far behind, Callum is unwilling to let his human family be murdered. When Micah commits the ultimate betrayal, the choice is made for them. But Micah has also made a fatal mistake . . . he's underestimated Wren and Callum."- Rebel summary from Goodreads
So when I received an ARC of Rebel a couple months ago on its own (rather than in a Harper ARC package), I asked on Twitter if I should read Reboot at all. I had wanted to read Reboot last year when it first came out but I never received an ARC and it's generally difficult for me to fit non-ARC books into my reading schedule. I was assured by a few people (including Amy Tintera herself) that Reboot was a fabulous book and everyone was jealous of me having Rebel already. I tracked Reboot down at my local library and read the two back-to-back. I quite enjoyed them both and read a good chunk of each in a sitting (I read like 150 pages of Reboot while waiting for my roommates to come home one night, and 100 pages of Rebel laying in bed waiting for dinner).
I'm really glad first off that this was a duology and that I waited to read them together. I always hate having to wait between books so it's always nice when I don't get around to something until later and am able to just continue right away after a cliffhanger. Although Tintera does do a good job of ending Reboot at a good place where one adventure ends and another begins, so it's not too bad. But it was nice to stay in the world and see what happens to these characters next.
In Reboot, the reader gets to know Wren and follow along on her journey in escaping HARC with her new trainee, Callum, and watching them fall for each other in the meantime. Tintera sets up the tension between them well, and gives good reason for them to be together. The added bonus then in Rebel is that the reader gets to flip back and forth between Wren and Callum, giving some great insight into Callum's character and providing a nice storyline and emotional arc for him as well. While they do spend a good amount of the book together, they spend a lot of time apart so the dual narrative is necessary to stay on top of the story.
The world building is done very well and the concept is very interesting; it's kind of a little twist on zombies. The only thing that slightly bothered me was the similarities to The Darkest Minds by Alex Bracken. Obviously there's no copying here as both came out just months apart from each other, but it was just intriguing to me how similar the set-up was.
Overall though, this was a fantastic new entry to the dystopian YA genre, and I'm excited to see what Tintera comes up with next!
I'm also giving away my ARC of Rebel by Amy Tintera- all you have to do is leave a comment on this post with your email address by Friday, May 2 at 9pm EST! US/Canada residents only!
FTC: Borrowed Reboot from local library, received Rebel ARC from publisher. Links above are Amazon Associate links; any profits go toward funding contests.