The Body Electric
Author: Beth Revis
Publisher: Scripturient Books
Genre: YA Science Fiction
Release Date: October 6, 2014
Source: egalley received from publisher via Netgalley
Rating: 3.5 Stars
Add to Goodreads
Buy the Book
***I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This has in no way changed my opinion of the book. The review below is my open and honest opinion.***
Synopsis from Goodreads:
The future world is at peace.
Ella Shepherd has dedicated her life to using her unique gift—the ability to enter people’s dreams and memories using technology developed by her mother—to help others relive their happy memories.
But not all is at it seems.
Ella starts seeing impossible things—images of her dead father, warnings of who she cannot trust. Her government recruits her to spy on a rebel group, using her ability to experience—and influence—the memories of traitors. But the leader of the rebels claims they used to be in love—even though Ella’s never met him before in her life. Which can only mean one thing…
Someone’s altered her memory.
Ella’s gift is enough to overthrow a corrupt government or crush a growing rebel group. She is the key to stopping a war she didn’t even know was happening. But if someone else has been inside Ella’s head, she cannot trust her own memories, thoughts, or feelings.
So who can she trust?
I read Beth Revis’s Across the Universe
series before I started blogging and loved it so was really excited when I heard she had a new book. The Body Electric
was a very interesting and unique read. I’m not going to lie, some of it was a bit…strange. But I loved unraveling all the mysteries with the main character.
The main character, Ella, can enter other people’s dreams through a Reverie, technology that her mother developed to help people relive their best memories. Of course, that ability would be coveted by the corrupt government. Naturally, they want Ella to spy for them.
I really loved the setting of this book. It takes place on what used to be the island of Malta. Basically the world fell apart, there was a huge war and now there is the largest government that’s ever existed in history. If you’re confused about any of the world-building, which I really wasn’t, but if you are, there are notes in the back of the book that give you a more in-depth look at the world. But anyway, the island was dubbed New Venice and was a layer of cities. There was the Upper City and the Lower City. The Lower City was exactly like Venice with canals and gondolas. The whole city sits right on the Mediterranean and everything just sounded so picturesque.
The story itself was really interesting. In true Beth Revis fashion, there’s a lot of science. There’s talk of androids, cyborgs, cloning, etc. There’s a lot of speculation on the human brain and why it’s never been successfully cloned. Ella’s parents were both genius scientists. I loved all this science-y stuff and my inner nerd was totally cheering.
Ella was a great main character. She was brave and determined. I really felt her pain over losing her father and struggling with her mother’s disease (her mom is dying). I felt her inner turmoil and she tries to figure out what’s going on, who wiped her memories and what it all means. I also enjoyed the romance. Though I didn’t really swoon over Jack, I thought it was sweet and I definitely enjoyed his character.
All that being said, I think the characters could have been stronger. I think that’s the curse of the standalone. I find with standalones that the character development isn’t quite as good as it is in series and perhaps this book suffered from that.
The ending was also a bit rushed to me. It seemed too easy. Ella just kind of figured everything out and then was able to fix it without even trying. I would have liked it better if she figured it out earlier and then had to work to put everything back into place. I think I really just wanted this book to be a series. At least a duology.
But still, it was a thoroughly enjoyable read. If you like science, corrupt governments, creepy hallucinations, and strange boys that you should remember but don’t, then you should check this one out. Beth Revis is an amazing author and I can’t wait to see what she does next!
Have you read this one yet? What did you think? Did you feel like the ending was rushed? Did you like the characters?