Tuesday 18 September 2012

Review: Shift by Kim Curran

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Source: Publisher via Netgalley

Synopsis from Goodreads:
When your average, 16-year old loser, Scott Tyler, meets the beautiful and mysterious Aubrey Jones, he learns he's not so average after all. He's a 'Shifter'. And that means he has the power to undo any decision he's ever made. At first, he thinks the power to shift is pretty cool. But as his world starts to unravel around him he realises that each time he uses his power, it has consequences; terrible unforeseen consequences. Shifting is going to get him killed. In a world where everything can change with a thought, Scott has to decide where he stands.

Imagine that you could undo any decision from your past just by thinking about a different course of action. You could completely change the course of your life and of those close to you, and only you would remember the old past.  This is the basis of Kim Curran's debut novel Shift.

When 16 year old Scott discovers that he can "Shift", (by accidentally falling from an electricity pylon) he also finds himself at the centre of a conspiracy between secret organisations of Shifters, and in danger from those who would manipulate his power for their own ends. And of course, some of the decisions he makes have terrible unforeseen consequences that affect not only Scott but his friends and family too.

I liked Scott's voice in this. He is not a very popular guy- a self described loser, but he in narrating the story he is honest, and quirky and very funny. He has a very sarcastic and pessimistic outlook on life, and this lends such a great edge of humour to an otherwise dark and action based story. I love it when I'm reading a book with a big smirk on face because of the comical things the characters are coming out with.

The twists and turns in the plotline from when a decision has been reversed and the story goes a different direction are surprisingly easy to follow (I thought I would get confused), but it always made sense, and added an exciting new layer to the story.

I loved the dynamic between kick-ass experienced shifter Aubrey and nerdy clueless Scott, and how they grew closer as they were forced to work together to uncover the truth. With everything changing constantly with the different shifts, and with not knowing who and which organisation could be trusted, these two characters were always steady like a rock in a storm.

This book was great fun, exhilarating, and riveting, with unexpected twists and turns. It's action packed and quirky, and I liked the characters, and the idea of teenage shifters running a secret organisation. It reminds me a little of Jumper or The Butterfly Effect. A definite must-read for sci-fi or time travel fans.

Thanks to Netgalley and Strange Chemistry for the review copy.

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