Ahoy there me mateys! I received this young adult sci-fi eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. So here be me honest musings . . .
select (Marit Weisenberg)
Author: Marit Weisenberg
Publisher: Charlesbridge Teen
Publication Date: October 3, 2017 (hardcover/e-book)
This was a book I stumbled across that had a fascinating premise and I was excited to have me wish granted. A group of biologically different humans lives in Austin, TX. Julia, is one of these “select” people but has always had trouble fitting in. Forced to keep a low profile and told to hide her gifts, she makes a mistake and finds herself forced to go to ::gasp:: a public high school with “normal” humans. What will she do?
Apparently she will have insta-lust and waffle a lot. Now this was a fast read and only took a couple of hours. I did finish it, which was good. But seriously for a group of special people trying to hide their gifts, they seem to go out of their way to flaunt themselves. The leader (Julia’s dad) is a billionaire investor. The whole group lives in mansions, wears designer clothes, and drives expensive cars. I have known teens who drive BMWs and such. They do NOT blend.
The other kids in the “select” group are daredevils and troublemakers and yet none of them have ever been caught or truly punished. Mommy and Daddy just get the lawyers to bail them out. So the premise that Julia blows their cover and has to be punished seemed unbelievable. And Julia being forced to go to public school for punishment did not lead to anything other than fodder for the insta-love relationship. Julia skates through school with no real consequences for anything really. Though she learns to control her powers by using them in stupid ways. Bland.
The relationship itself was kinda creepy and self-serving, especially in the beginning. Julia and John have instant chemistry but her method of learning about him is to read his mind without permission and then use that knowledge to encourage him. Just because she is bored. I would rather they had a better relationship than one built on lies and some flashes of exposed leg. Oh add in some non-appealing pseudo love triangle junk and shake not stir.
Even the powers of Julia and the “select” left something to be desired. Instead of rooting for them, all of the people in her family group felt like a cult. The powers, like telekinesis or enhanced stamina, were barely used at all and when they were, it felt more like whiny magic people throwing temper tantrums. If that is what it meant to be one of the “select” then I will gladly pass.
I would have loved for this to have been a deeper look into different branches of human evolution living alongside each other. I would have loved the “select” to have used their intelligence and powers for something other than money and solitude. I would have loved for all of the characters to have more depth. I would have loved for Julia’s golden cage to have actually been appealing so that she had a better reason for her inner conflict.
Overall the premise did not live up to its promise. Sigh.
So lastly . . .
Thank you Charlesbridge Teen!
Side note: Some mateys disagree with me. Check out this review by the leisure diaries!
The publisher’s website has this to say about the novel:
“It had always been a fact of life that we were biologically different—better—and that it had to be kept secret.”
Seventeen-year-old Julia Jaynes has the perfect life. She’s beautiful, freakishly athletic, and extremely smart. That’s because she comes from a race of highly-evolved humans living in the heart of Austin, Texas.
In order to protect their anonymity and preserve their elite society, Julia’s powerful father forces her to suppress her abilities. When she accidentally demonstrates her super human prowess in public, she’s banished to the one place meant to make her feel inferior: public high school. Thrust into the confusion and humiliation of a normal high school, Julia is just trying to keep her head down when John Ford strolls into her life. An outsider and tennis jock, John is immediately attractive to Julia as a curiosity. She can even read his mind. But as Julia’s newfound powers over John grow, so do her feelings.
When she discovers her father has been hiding dangerous secrets, for the first time in her life, Julia begins to question her restrictive upbringing. Caught between the prejudices of her manipulative father and the allure of an outsider’s life, Julia must decide how she will define herself—and who she will betray.
To visit the author’s Facebook page go to:
Marit Weisenberg – Author
To buy the novel please visit:
select – Book
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