I'm thrilled and honored to be a part of the DUALED AMBUZZADOR BLOG TOUR and to share my review with y'all today...
You or your Alt? Only one will survive.The city of Kersh is a safe haven, but the price of safety is high. Everyone has a genetic Alternate—a twin raised by another family—and citizens must prove their worth by eliminating their Alts before their twentieth birthday. Survival means advanced schooling, a good job, marriage—life.Fifteen-year-old West Grayer has trained as a fighter, preparing for the day when her assignment arrives and she will have one month to hunt down and kill her Alt. But then a tragic misstep shakes West’s confidence. Stricken with grief and guilt, she’s no longer certain that she’s the best version of herself, the version worthy of a future. If she is to have any chance of winning, she must stop running not only from her Alt, but also from love . . . though both have the power to destroy her.Elsie Chapman's suspenseful YA debut weaves unexpected romance into a novel full of fast-paced action and thought-provoking philosophy. When the story ends, discussions will begin about this future society where every adult is a murderer and every child knows there is another out there who just might be better.
WATCH THE BOOK TRAILER
Fresh ideas and worlds are getting harder and harder to come by in YA dystopian books, but Elsie Chapman's Dualed offers readers a suspenseful and action-packed story with an intriguing premise.
In a war torn future, the city of Kersh is a small safe haven and in this city every citizen has an Alt (a twin) that is raised by another set of parents. Each set of Alts must prove their worth by fighting each other to the death (within a month of their “assignment”) by their twentieth birthday. All West Grayer knows is grief and loneliness, but she is determined to be the surviving Alt and goes to extreme measures to make sure she's prepared when her time comes. But fighting against her identical Alt proves more difficult than she ever imagined and fear, doubt, and love get in the way.
Dualed has a captivating and explosive premise that is explored through the eyes of an unlikely heroine. Elsie Chapman has created a story that is as thought-provoking as it is entertaining. This is one of those books that is bound to inspire some great discussion about life, murder, and what one is capable of in impossible situations.
The idea of two Alts, two identical adolescents, that must fight to the death for a chance of survival is a refreshingly gritty one. I really like the intensity of the life or death tone of the book. Chapman starts with a bold premise, that is both fascinating and unsettling, and she really follows through with this tone and doesn't shy away from the dark and macabre. This premise isn't without its flaws in logic though, but I think this has a lot to do with world-building that is slightly lacking. The world-building that is present is definitely complex and excellently crafted, it just doesn't seem quite complete yet. I don't feel like I've been given a clear and complete look at this dystopian world and why it is the way it is. And I'm hoping this explored more in-depth in book two.
But, what the story lacks in world-building, is made up for in emotional and psychological development. Chapman really throws the feels at ya! West's impossible and difficult situation is heavily and fiercely felt throughout Dualed. All her pain, grief, guilt, and determination feels incredibly real and organic. West doesn't start out as a badass or ruthless person, but the desperate position she's in requires her to either give up and die or do whatever she has to to survive. She chooses the latter and I really loved watching her transform into the capable, cunning, kick-butt young woman she has to become.
The main focus in Dualed is on West's hunt for and showdown with her Alt, but there is a bit of romance. The romantic elements didn't thrill me, but I do like West's love interest Chord and the dynamic between the two. I found the ending satisfying, but I'm definitely eager for more.
MY FINAL THOUGHTS: Dualed packs a wicked punch and offers readers an intelligent story, with a great mix of action, suspense, and romance, that will leave readers entertained and thoughtful.
ELSIE CHAPMAN grew up in Prince George, British Columbia, Canada, before graduating from the University of British Columbia with a BA in English literature. She lives in Vancouver with her husband and two children, where she writes to either movies on a loop or music turned up way too loud (and sometimes both at the same time). Dualed is her first novel.
To celebrate the Dualed Blog Tour Random Buzzers will be hosting a Twitter giveaway! Just tweet the blog tour schedule link: http://www.randombuzzers.com/blog/view/the-buzz/follow-the-ambuzzador-dualed-blog-tour/2013/03/14/ and use the hashtag #Dualed! We'll be randomly picking two winners every day to win a copy of Dualed! Remember to follow us on Twitter as @Randombuzzers!