[Blog Tour + Giveaway] ARC Book Review: Plus One by Elizabeth Fama

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Title: Plus One
Author: Elizabeth Fama
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
Date of Publication: April 8, 2014

Purchase at:  Amazon | B&N | The Book Depository

Acquisition: Netgalley

Divided by day and night and on the run from authorities, star-crossed young lovers unearth a sinister conspiracy in this compelling romantic thriller.
Seventeen-year-old Soleil Le Coeur is a Smudge—a night dweller prohibited by law from going out during the day. When she fakes an injury in order to get access to and kidnap her newborn niece—a day dweller, or Ray—she sets in motion a fast-paced adventure that will bring her into conflict with the powerful lawmakers who order her world, and draw her together with the boy she was destined to fall in love with, but who is also a Ray.
Set in a vivid alternate reality and peopled with complex, deeply human characters on both sides of the day-night divide, Plus One is a brilliantly imagined drama of individual liberty and civil rights, and a fast-paced romantic adventure story.

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I’ve seen so many mixed reviews about Plus One, but I think I easily fell into the group of people who loved this book. I will admit that it took me two tries to get into this book. Maybe I was just a little distracted during the first time, but I was easily hooked when I picked up the book again. I think the first chapter just slammed me in the face with some very uncommon terms that I had to reel back. Everything was a lot easier to take in when I had my mind prepared for the introduction and further details of this whole new world. While reading this book, I was quite bothered by the year dates that the author used, and things were only cleared up when I read the synopsis to write this review. I was not aware until recently that this was set in an alternate universe with a different history as our own.

Plus One is set in a world where people are assigned to live their lives either during the day or during the night. This segregation was started out with good intentions, but I think that the whole system got out of hand. The Rays (day people) somehow became the more dominant group with more opportunities and privileges as compared to the Smudges (night people). It was fascinating to learn and know more about this way of life that they have built up for themselves. It’s just sad how some people don’t really have a choice in the matter, and there are definitely prejudices.

Despite the dystopian setting, this story is actually in a smaller scale than most dystopian novels. It’s not much about breaking down the messed up system, but rather two young people on the opposite sides of the spectrum. There is a side story of people protesting or refusing to conform though. Sol and D’Arcy on the other hand were living their lives conforming to the system, but they were somehow caught in between bigger conflicts than they dared to ask for. Yes, there will be the usual conflicts, action, and whatnot, but I think that the relationship between Sol and D’Arcy is the reason that made me really love this book.

Recently, I’ve been having an aversion to science fiction or fantasy books with too much romance, but the romance in Plus One worked well for me. Maybe it’s because they didn’t really have really big things to worry about like saving the world or fighting for the freedom of many. It almost had a contemporary feel to it, as far as dealing with kidnappers and other groups or running away from authorities could give anyway. I think their problems weren’t as urgent so it was okay to spend their sweet time together, hiding away from the laws that separate them. And I loved their back story and the relationship that developed between the two of them. I so need a sequel or some really good fanfiction just to get more of Sol and D’Arcy. I don’t want to spoil anything, but I must say that I loved the connection they formed between the two of them and how far each one of them would go for each other. Sol is definitely D’arcy’s plus one. It’s fascinating how these two people, who never should have met, want to be together despite the different social standing that they have.

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OVERALL, Plus One is a fascinating and thrilling read that I truly loved. It put me out of my dystopian funk, although I’m not really sure if it’s for the right reasons. I think that Elizabeth Fama definitely had an interesting take on this genre as she diverges from the usual “save the world. bring down the system” plot lines. The world that she created was definitely intriguing. I felt that the pacing was perfect and I loved the whole plot, but my heart definitely goes to the star-crossed lovers, Sol and D’Arcy.

RATING:

4.5-star

elizabethfamaElizabeth Fama is the author of Plus One (FSG, 2014), Monstrous Beauty (FSG, 2012), a YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults selection and Odyssey Award honor winner, and Overboard (Cricket Books, 2002), an ALA Best Books for Young Adults. She is represented by Sara Crowe of Harvey Klinger, Inc.
Author Links Website ll Twitter ll Tumblr

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A copy of PLUS ONE [INTL]

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Disclaimer:

  • This is all based on personal opinion, and as much as I’m open to other people’s opinions, I hope you understand that this is based on what I feel. I avoid giving out spoilers as much as possible, too.
  • I do not own most of the images I use, and some may be subject to editing.
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8 thoughts on “[Blog Tour + Giveaway] ARC Book Review: Plus One by Elizabeth Fama

  1. You know, I didn’t put it in my review, but I felt the same way about it feeling more like a contemporary than a dystopian. Overall I just fell in ❤ ❤ with this book.

  2. 4.5 stars, woohoo! I’ve read a couple of mixed reviews as well, but I’m pretty sold now! I get hesitant to read dystopian books since they can either be a hit or miss with me, but I’m glad you loved it! I’m really curious about Sol and D’arcy’s relationship. ^_^

  3. So glad you ended up enjoying it so much!! I absolutely cannot wait to read it. I just know that I’ll love it.

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