Thursday, 11 September 2014
Review: The 100 by Kass Morgan
Publisher: Little Brown Books
Publication Date: September 3rd, 2013
Series: The Hundred #1
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In the future, humans live in city-like spaceships orbiting far above Earth's toxic atmosphere. No one knows when, or even if, the long-abandoned planet will be habitable again. But faced with dwindling resources and a growing populace, government leaders know they must reclaim their homeland... before it's too late.
Now, one hundred juvenile delinquents are being sent on a high-stakes mission to recolonize Earth. After a brutal crash landing, the teens arrive on a savagely beautiful planet they've only seen from space. Confronting the dangers of this rugged new world, they struggle to form a tentative community. But they're haunted by their past and uncertain about the future. To survive, they must learn to trust - and even love - again.
I remember when I first heard the synopsis for The 100 before it was released, it totally got me right away. I'm a sucker for sci-fi. Especially when there's people living on a space ship. So of course I added this to my TBR. But than reviews came in and they weren't great. Unfortunately that made me lose some interest. It happens. Than the T.V. show aired and people were loving it. So I'm like maybe I'll just watch the show. I never did. But than Netgalley has The 100 and sequel up, obviously I clicked request. And here I am. Silly me for letting the early reviews stop me from picking up this book. I was pleasantly surprised by how much I liked it. Of course once I finished it yesterday I had to check out the show. And holy crap guys, the show is ridiculously good! It's addictive(as a lot of CW shows are) and takes out all the unnecessary bits from the book. I hate to say it, but the show is loads better. That being said. The book is great and different from the show. So I'd definitely recommend picking it up even if you started watching the show first. I'm super excited to continue on with the series and see what other thrilling action Morgan has in store for her readers.
Three Hundred years ago Earth's atmosphere was destroyed by toxic bombs. It made the air toxic, so a fraction of the surviving people were sent to live on a space station orbiting Earth. Strict rules were set into place by the governing body and scientists were set to the task of finding a way to get back to living safely on Earth. After three hundred years the space stations systems are failing and it's only a matter of time before oxygen runs out. Scientists are still no closer to finding a cure to the toxins in Earth's atmosphere. And the general living arrangements on the station are quite poor. There is a major difference between how classes are treated. And the law is a hard bitch. The people can be prosecuted for almost any little infraction. Any one over the age of eighteen are trialed right away and 99% of verdicts end in the person being floated(yup, sucked into space). Kids under the age of eighteen are held in confinement until they turn eighteen where they are re-tried and will most likely face death. With only months left of oxygen the governing body decides out of desperation to send one hundred of these kids to Earth to see if it's livable yet and if so radio back to the ship. And if not, whatever, that's one hundred less people breathing. The kids land on Earth to find it breathable and thriving. All good, right? Not really. Their brutal landing took out their communication devices back to the station. Now they need to learn to survive in this new environment. They also need to learn to trust each other. Which is easier said than done. Things quickly turn Lord of the Flies like. So surviving Earth isn't the biggest problem. Well at first.
The 100 is told from four POV's; Clarke, Wells, Bellamy and Glass. I thought it might be much to get so many POV's. Especially when three of them are experiencing the same thing(being on Earth). But it was quite easy to get involved and recognize each voice(each chapter is headed with the character). Clarke, Wells and Bellamy are the ones on Earth, well Glass escaped the ship heading to Earth and is stuck on the station. I really enjoyed the three on Earth's stories and chapters. Earth is such an unknown environment and add in a bunch of kids learning to survive together that is made for some tense and intense moments. Where as Glass's chapters were silly and unnecessary. She should have been giving us glimpses into the hostile nature on board the station. Where instead we got an angst filled romance with tiny snap shots into life on board the station. Her chapters for me were pointless and not what I was expecting(thankfully the T.V. show cut her character).
Each chapter also has flash backs incorporated. Pretty much these are flash backs are what lead to that kids confinement or just how difficult their life was. I really enjoyed these scenes as well. I like the insight it gave into each character and how brutal life could be on board the station. It provides more in depth character development. Which I don't think would have been as effective if said character was just talking about their past in the present. Especially with the four POV's, that meant less time spent on each individual character and their story. Although Clarke and Well's past is connected.
As characters, they each fulfill their own roles. Glass is the silly, lovesick girl. Romance is rampant throughout the book, it's just that seems to be Glass's only purpose. She really annoyed me. But I hope with how her story cut off, we'll be seeing a lot more from her in the sequel. Shit got real on the station and I want to feel all the intensity.
Clarke is the strong heroine. She's the only one proficient in anything medical and that leads her to have to take an immediate leadership role. She's also quite sassy but not quick to judge.
Wells is the son of the leader on board the station. So he knows all about leadership. But the problem is he's now stuck on Earth with a bunch of kids that are pretty much from the slums of the station. Let's just say that his father is not their favourite person. Which by default makes Wells guilty by association. That doesn't stop him from being logical and quick thinking. And really he's only there to protect Clarke. She is his main priority.
Bellamy is also only there to protect someone; his sister. He wasn't supposed to be on Earth. He busted his way onto the ship as it was taking off. It kinds of makes him dangerous, as he absolutely no care except making sure his sister survives. He has his asshole moments. But he's also funny and sarcastic. Like the lovable jackass. The extremely hot, knowledgeable jackass. Bellamy and Clarke's interactions are top notch. There might even be some sizzling chemistry there.
The 100 is a quick page turner. It's full of intense moments as characters keep diving into the unknown. The Lord of the Flies feel on Earth brings some nail biting moments. Well the cliff hanger just made me want to punch all the things. Thankfully I have the sequel to jump right into. That ending guys, it's crazy. But crazy good.