Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Review: Split Second by Kasie West

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Review: Split Second by Kasie West
Split Second
Kasie West
Series: Pivot Point #2
Genre: Paranormal, YA
Publication date: February 11th 2014
by HarperTeen

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Life can change in a split second.

Addie hardly recognizes her life since her parents divorced. Her boyfriend used her. Her best friend betrayed her. She can’t believe this is the future she chose. On top of that, her ability is acting up. She’s always been able to Search the future when presented with a choice. Now she can manipulate and slow down time, too . . . but not without a price.

When Addie’s dad invites her to spend her winter break with him, she jumps at the chance to escape into the Norm world of Dallas, Texas. There she meets the handsome and achingly familiar Trevor. He’s a virtual stranger to her, so why does her heart do a funny flip every time she sees him? But after witnessing secrets that were supposed to stay hidden, Trevor quickly seems more suspicious of Addie than interested in her. And she has an inexplicable desire to change that.

Meanwhile, her best friend, Laila, has a secret of her own: she can restore Addie’s memories . . . once she learns how. But there are powerful people who don’t want to see this happen. Desperate, Laila tries to manipulate Connor, a brooding bad boy from school—but he seems to be the only boy in the Compound immune to her charms. And the only one who can help her.

As Addie and Laila frantically attempt to retrieve the lost memories, Addie must piece together a world she thought she knew before she loses the love she nearly forgot . . . and a future that could change everything.

PIVOT POINT was a fast favourite of mine from last year so when SPLIT SECOND came out I was quick to run out and get it and make the time to read it. Coming out of it I am happy with the story but I I feel it was missing some elements of a successful sequel. After reading through the reviews of this I see that I may be the only one who had this issue, but I haven’t come across this so strongly before so I feel the need to point it out.

So my issue is this: I was completely lost as to almost all of the references to the first novel. I have a terrible memory and I know this but I can usually carry on pretty well with a brief reference to events from the first novel. In SPLIT SECOND the characters would mention something that happened in the previous novel and I was just so lost! PIVOT POINT had a lot of twists and turns and little plot points that had to be remembered to get why Addie chose the life that she did and what she went through to come to that decision and I don’t feel like SPLIT SECOND refreshed any of that in my mind. I actually ended up going to some blog that recaps novels for people (who knew this existed?) and I really didn’t like that I had to do that. I understand that the author can’t just rehash the first novel because it would be boring but there is generally a conversation, or a character reading something that refreshes everything for the reader.

Now that that is out of the way, here’s what made the novel work for me. I really liked Addie and Laila, the latter more-so than the former. Laila is a spitfire, she is snarky and not afraid to do some dirty things with her power to get her way or to help out her friends. We get to see quite a bit of her home life here as she struggles with dealing with her suppressant addicted father and tries to help out her younger brother, Eli, find out what his ability is. I liked seeing her not only fighting to help out Addie, but also putting her neck out for her brother and the repercussions of that. Addie was great too, but I felt that her character played everything more safely than Laila. There’s a lot of mystery surrounding her family out in the norm world here and she has to weed through so much stuff to get to the truth of it all. She’s thrown curveballs about the life & death of her grandfather which really tests the trust between her father and herself. Through it all I liked that she was constantly digging to find her own truths instead of just eating up everything that she was fed from the people around her.

The true gem of the novel here is the romances. Both Laila and Addie build up these wonderful romances that slowly grow until the reader is just dying for it all to culminate into a moment of heated passion. Connor, Laila’s love interest, was my favourite. He had his own mysteries surrounding him and he was just as snarky to Laila as she was to him. I liked the balance between them and how once they stopped fighting their feelings they were so perfect for one another. Addie and Trevor were fantastic as well. Their romance was interesting because Addie comes into it all knowing so much more than Trevor and they have to work to a time when they are finally on the same page.

The novel is filled with action sequences that highlight the abilities of the characters and keep the plot moving forward at a break neck pace. The way the abilities grow and take the reader by surprise is really great. I think I would have been able to get much more lost in the novel if I didn’t feel so darn lost through the majority of it. As I said before, that complaint is probably just me, but I have never found myself so oblivious to the previous book before. There is nothing wrong with a little refresher for the reader when we have to wait upwards of a year to read succeeding books. All in all this was a very fun read and a nice wrap up to this duology.

3.5 Stars
3.5 Hot Espressos

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Hi! I’m Jenni and I am a book-a-holic. I live in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada and more than anything, I love reading. I mostly read within the YA genre though I do venture into middle grade and adult from time to time. I was big into reading in high school but then when I had my children I stepped away from it for a bit. Now that my brats are a bit older and I have more time on my hands I have jumped back into it head on.
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28 Responses to “Review: Split Second by Kasie West”

  1. Nick @ Nick's Book Blog

    I’m glad you enjoyed this overall, Jenni. I liked Laila a little more than Addie too. You are the only other person I know who shared that feeling. I also adored Connor too. It’s a shame you didn’t remember events from the previous books, but that’s happened to me before too, so that’s understandable.
    Lovely review, Jenni.
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  2. Lisa (Lost in Literature)

    Yay Jenni! I’m glad you enjoyed it. To me, Kasie West can do no wrong. :) Though I do know what you mean about the confusion as far as how things were left in Pivot Point. I have a HORRIBLE memory myself, so I went to http://recaptains.blogspot.com/ myself to read up on what had happened in Pivot Point. I love this website and visit it often when starting a second book in a series, so to me, this is just normal practice. But I can understand why that was bothersome to you. Overall, I’m glad you enjoyed it! :)
    Lisa (Lost in Literature) recently posted…Audiobook Review: The Art of Falling by Jenny KaczorowskiMy Profile

  3. Faye @ The Social Potato

    Once more, Kasie West has proven herself to be a really excellent storyteller! I know, I know, I’ve yet to read any of her works, but i’m going to change that when I get to her “On the Fence” book, which I fortunately got as an ARC. Haha! I DNFed Pivot Point (I already forgot the reason why, probably something very shallow) but I think I’ll give it another go since so many love it AND the sequel (as you’ve just shown here!). Yup, Faye, time to stop slacking!

    Great review, Jenni :)
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  4. Maya

    I’ve heard a lot of good things about Pivot Point and it’s certainly got a great premise, but it’s a shame the second book didn’t quite live up to that. It’s always a disappointment when “Second Book Syndrome” strikes! Thanks for the review, Jenni :)
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  5. Eileen @ Singing and Reading in the Rain

    Yay I’m glad you liked this one! I agree, it was so hard to get my bearings at first of Split Second, but after I found that I liked it a lot more than I expected from the beginning. I agree, Laila is the snarkiest, most hilarious character I’ve ever read and I loved the romance between her and Connor. Also the fact that Kasie managed to almost completely rebuild the relationship between Addie and Trevor was so great! Fantastic review, Jenni! <33
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  6. Alexa

    I agree with you that the book was a little weird because of those mentions of things from the first book. Unless you had just finished reading Pivot Point before starting this it was easy to be a little lost. I felt I was a little lost at times myself. Plus while I like dual narratives I felt this one was thrown in when the first book was about Addie. I don’t really like narratives just thrown in when the character wasn’t a narrator in the first book.

    Thanks for the great review!
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