Goodreads rating: 3.40
Format: Final Copy BEA14
From the author of THE SUMMER PRINCE, a novel that's John Grisham's THE PELICAN BRIEF meets Michael Crichton's THE ANDROMEDA STRAIN set at an elite Washington D.C. prep school.
Emily Bird was raised not to ask questions. She has perfect hair, the perfect boyfriend, and a perfect Ivy-League future. But a chance meeting with Roosevelt David, a homeland security agent, at a party for Washington DC's elite leads to Bird waking up in a hospital, days later, with no memory of the end of the night.
Meanwhile, the world has fallen apart: A deadly flu virus is sweeping the nation, forcing quarantines, curfews, even martial law. And Roosevelt is certain that Bird knows something. Something about the virus--something about her parents' top secret scientific work--something she shouldn't know.
The only one Bird can trust is Coffee, a quiet, outsider genius who deals drugs to their classmates and is a firm believer in conspiracy theories. And he believes in Bird. But as Bird and Coffee dig deeper into what really happened that night, Bird finds that she might know more than she remembers. And what she knows could unleash the biggest government scandal in US history.
This was a moderately entertaining book. Why only moderately? Well, I am writing this review a month later and am very thankful I took notes on my thoughts on the book because I can't remember a lot of it besides the disease that is rampaging the world and a girl who can't remember what happened one night at a party.
The book does a good job at setting up the severity of the virus and the situation the country is placed into. I love a good story about a deadly virus and really enjoyed the chaos of a viral terrorist threat. So much so, in fact, I liked reading about the deadly virus threat more than anything else in the book (like the actual plot of why Bird can't remember her one night at the party and the love story between Bird and Coffee).
The actual plot and mystery of why Bird can't remember anything was pretty good. I do like a good government conspiracy plot. It was interesting to see her working things out as too why Roosevelt was after her, but was a little confusing at times.
The love story between Coffee and Bird even took me a bit to get into. I do like the idea of a relationship starting from a friendship that has lasted for years (as opposed to the unrealistic notion of "hey I just met you, we're in love now" notion that some books have) but for some reason I was just having trouble getting into it. It might be me just saying "hey dump your "perfect" (loser) boyfriend and follow your heart and stop beating around the bush with everything" repeatedly that just aggravated me.
There was a very good "Be Yourself" theme that I really liked. I loved how the author used different names to show almost different Birds. Emily was the perfect daughter and girlfriend that everyone wanted her to be and Bird ended up being the real person Bird wanted to be.
Overall, the book was a little confusing between the love story, finding yourself, standing up for yourself, world pandemic and the figuring out what actually happened to Bird that night (which I'm still actually really confused on...), plus why Roosevelt was after her (yeah, still don't get that either). There was a lot you had to follow. There were some times that I couldn't put the book down but there were others where I was thinking "oh my goodness am I almost done?". The ending even was sweet, if not a little bit sappy, and like I said, still left me kind of confused as to what actually happened to Bird.
The book gets 3.5/5 stars from me for having a really cool "Embrace who you truly are" theme, but the leftover confusing still left me wondering if I may have missed something in the book, but I wasn't drawn into the book enough to go back and read it :/