DEV1AT3 by Jay Kristoff
Published by: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: June 25, 2019
Genre: Science Fiction, Dystopian
Page Count: 448
In the wake of a climactic battle in the ruined city of Babel, two former best friends suddenly find themselves on opposite sides of the same quest. Eve is torn between the memories of the girl she was, and the synthetic she’s discovered herself to be. Together with her lifelike “siblings,” Eve sets out to find the real Ana Monrova, whose DNA is the key to building an army of lifelikes.
Meanwhile, Eve’s best friend, Lemon, is coming to terms with a power that she has long denied—and that others want to harness as a weapon. When she meets a strange boy named Grimm, he offers to lead her out of the horror-ridden landscape and to an enclave of other abnorms like herself. There, Lemon quickly finds a sense of belonging—and perhaps even love—among the other genetic deviates.
But all is not what it seems, and with enemies and friends, heroes and villains wearing interchangeable faces, Lemon, too, will join the race to locate Ana Monrova before her former best friend can get to her.
“Sometimes you don’t know you’ve crossed the line till you’re on the other side.”
Droogs, I don’t know if I can handle another one of Kristoff’s cliffhangers. I don’t. But this soul-destroying creator probably enjoys our torture, so I’m not counting on it. But damn you, Kristoff. Damn you.
Paradise Lost meets post-apocalyptic X-Men with a heavy dose of Mad Max, DEV1AT3 will utterly destroy your expectations. If you believed the ending of LIKEL1K3 was rough, then buckle in. Kristoff is will hit you with enough g-force you’ll come out breathless. It took me more than a month to come to terms with that ending. And I’m still not okay. I don’t understand how Kristoff conceives a mashup of storylines that somehow entwine together. Without a doubt, DEV1AT3 is one of the top favourite reads of 2019.
I love Kristoff’s brand of science fiction. Sure, he takes some elements from well-loved series, but he provides his own take on the genre. He tests the boundaries, he erases them, then he creates novel ones. He makes me love villains, dammit! And as a reader, I don’t care if I’m conflicted. What I’m clashing with is which element of the book is better: the plot-driven, high-octane storyline or the characters who I’d die for.
After discovering the devastating truths of her past, Eve now walks on the edge of her new life. And she wants nothing more than to wreak the revenge she deserves and to kill the one person who could take everything away from her: the real Ana Monrova. At the end of Lifel1k3, I couldn’t stop sympathizing with Eve. Finding out who she is and what her loved ones had forced her to do is what broke her. But I love how she has evolved from the anti-hero to who she is now. I struggled at first with that change. But I grew to appreciate her development.
But Eve’s course puts her at odds with her bestie, Lemon Fresh, a deviant who’s still learning her powers. Their path separates them and makes them enemies. And while Lemon finds herself with other deviates and a man who may offer her the secrets of her past, Cricket, a logika sidekick, and Ezekiel, a lifelike, must find a way to bring everyone back together again. DEV1AT3 mainly focuses on Lemon’s progression. And I never knew I’d love a character more, other than Cricket, who somehow finds himself involved with the puritan religious cult. Kristoff gives you a better understanding of the Brotherhood, which legitimately scares me.
The plot doesn’t overshadow the characters and their own stories. They work in tandem. While the characters are the focal point, Kristoff has crafted one damn good storyline though. But that cliffhanger will bother the hell out of me for months to come. And I blame Kristoff for that. I do. I cannot recommend the series enough. You need to read these dynamic and jaw-dropping novels!