Monday, June 30, 2014

Review: The Murder Complex by Lindsay Cummings

Meadow Woodson, a fifteen-year-old girl who has been trained by her father to fight, to kill, and to survive in any situation, lives with her family on a houseboat in Florida. The state is controlled by The Murder Complex, an organization that tracks the population with precision.

The plot starts to thicken when Meadow meets Zephyr James, who is—although he doesn’t know it—one of the MC’s programmed assassins. Is their meeting a coincidence? Destiny? Or part of a terrifying strategy? And will Zephyr keep Meadow from discovering the haunting truth about her family?

Action-packed, blood-soaked, and chilling, this is a dark and compelling debut novel by Lindsay Cummings.

My Rating

My Review

 Ever since reading and reviewing The Fear Trials I have been eagerly awaiting The Murder Complex. After all, I liked Meadow, I loved the world that Cummings built, and the novel promised to be deliciously dark. I can't say I was disappointed. The Murder Complex is a killer debut that looks to be the start of an excellent series.

When most novels say they are action-packed, it means that you get a fantastic exciting scene in between a couple of tension builders. When this novel says it is action-packed, that's exactly what it means. There was plenty going on, and with the fast pacing and exciting plot, I wasn't bored for a second. The book has an excellent way of keeping the pages turning without allowing the reader to lose interest or get too confused.

The dystopian world of The Murder Complex is built nicely and creates a very distinct mood that isn't found in many other novels. Always having this presence of danger keeps the reader on edge, with a desire to learn more about what is going on. I loved the book's concept. The entire idea of the Murder Complex and how it effected both Meadow and Zephyr is absolutely chilling.

Characters of The Murder Complex were well-developed. Meadow, like many female dystopian leads, has her badassery levels skyrocketing, but it makes sense in this case, as she was trained her entire life. (I was getting a bit sick of characters who try everything for the first time and are near masters. It was nice to see a girl who had to work hard to achieve what she can do!) Zephyr's character in the beginning wasn't all that great, as his fascination with his "moonlit girl" grew sort of old, but he developed strongly through the novel. His transition into a pawn for the Murder Complex gave me chills, and provided the kind of darkness that I crave to read about in characters. I would love to see more of Meadow's siblings in the future. Koi is one of the most complex characters written, while Peri never really had the chance to show she can do much more than care about her sister.

The only thing that really didn't do it for me was the romance between Meadow and Zephyr. It isn't that I don't like the fact that they're together, I just didn't like the way it happened. The idea of 'insta-love' doesn't always bother me, it was more so that it felt unnatural. Especially on Meadow's side, the feelings felt so back-and-forth between like and hate (with an external emphasis on the latter) that one could get whiplash from standing too close. Then, suddenly it seemed, they love each other? I know that when you're life is on the line, taking it slow is not exactly a priority, but it still felt a bit too fast and disconnected, especially for someone as distrusting as Meadow. Regardless, I enjoyed the scenes they had together and am curious to see how the relationship will progress.

Despite the few faults, I really enjoyed reading The Murder Complex. The writing and description were both phenomenal - all the way to the cliffhanger ending (and I mean cliffhanger). The Murder Complex brings something new to dystopia, and overall, readers should definitely enjoy the ride. I can't wait to read more of Cummings' work. 

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