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Friday, March 22, 2019

So-So YA Thriller Doesn't Do Justice to Intriguing Premise

(Image from Barnes & Noble)

When 17-year-old Chloe Holden accidentally runs into a stranger in a convenience store, she's shocked by his reaction.  Yes, she knocked into the teen guy and made him spill his slushie, but it was a total accident, so what's with the hateful threats?  She's never seen the guy before.  Why is he acting like he knows exactly who she is?  

Chloe starts at her new school only to find herself the subject of a death glare from the same strange kid.  She finds out he's senior Cash Colton, a foster kid who's known for making trouble.  When Chloe finds herself defending him after a fight at school, the two become tentative friends.  As they get to know each other better, Cash explains his weird initial reaction to Chloe—his foster parents' toddler was kidnapped 15 years ago and Chloe, who was adopted at 3 years old, looks just like her.  Shocked by the very idea, Chloe begins to question everything she's ever known—and not known—about herself.  Who is she, really?  The more she and Cash dig into her past, the more disturbing and dangerous the present becomes ...

In Another Life by C.C. Hunter boasts an intriguing premise, the kind that usually pulls me right in.  While I found the idea at the center of the novel compelling, the execution didn't quite do it for me.  Chloe, Cash, & Co. feel like flat, generic stereotypes and the plot gets more far-fetched and melodramatic as it goes along.  Several points don't make sense, like why Cash doesn't just grab some DNA samples on the sly and have them tested, which made the story feel illogical to me.  All in all, then, I didn't love this one.  It kept me engrossed enough to finish, true, but overall, I just wasn't that impressed.  


If this were a movie, it would be rated:

for language (a handful of F-bombs, plus milder expletives), violence, sexual innuendo, and mild sexual content

To the FTC, with love:  I received an e-ARC of In Another Life from the generous folks at St. Martin's Press.  Thank you!
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