Thursday, January 29, 2015

Review: Under My Skin by Shawntelle Madison

Under My Skin

By Shawntelle Madison

Blurb: Everyone wants to either be a member of the Guild or work for them. Little does the populace know that the Guild hides sinister secrets...

For Tate Sullivan, life in her small, coastal town is far from glamorous. The affluent lives of the Guild members and their servants isn't something she has ever wanted. But all sixteen year-olds must take a simple test, and Tate's result thrusts her into the Guild's world, one where they hide horrible plans for those they select. Tate must fight the relentless General Dagon for control of her mind, body, and soul to keep the one precious thing she has always taken for granted: herself.

Her only ally is the same handsome boy she is pitted against in General Dagon’s deadly game. Quinn desires nothing more than to end the life of General Dagon who has taken over Tate's mind. While romance blooms between Tate and Quinn, General Dagon plots to eventually take over Tate's body, and love might end before it even begins.

Genres: Young Adult, Romance, Dystopian, Science Fiction

Publication Date: December 9, 2014

Pages: 340

Series: Immortality Strain (book 1)

My Rating: 3 stars

After Under My Skin ended, I closed the book on my kindle and wondered, "Why didn't I like this as much as everyone else?"

Because I have read all the glowing reviews of this book. They are the reason that I was so excited to read the story. And yet, I, a person who usually agrees with the hype, was underwhelmed. That barely ever happens to me, and I wasn't expecting it.

I think the problem that I didn't love this as much as everyone else was that I expected to much from it. While this is a very exciting novel to get into, at the end of the day, it is not extremely different from much of the other dystopians out there. It is good, but it doesn't stand out to me like I was expecting it to.

Sure, it does have a unique plot, but that plot ends up following a similar formula like many dystopians do.

1.) Girl gets singled out in her society in some way.
2.) This always is a bad thing, though many times it seems good at first.
3.) Girl learns her society is corrupt. This shocks her.
4.) Girl rebels against society that she has come to hate.

Dystopian stories are starting to bother me with this a lot. I used to overlook it because this was once my favorite genre ever, but now, it has been harder and harder to, and is rapidly becoming a huge pet peeve of mine. So that may have something to do with why I didn't love this book.

The other problem is that I ended up predicting a lot of things before they happened. This always takes away some of the thrill of a story. It wasn't all that hard to see what was coming next, and so I wasn't as interested to see where the book was going.

It sounds so far like I hated this book, but that is not the case. This was enjoyable despite its flaws. The main character, Tate, for example, was quite likeable. I desperately wanted her to succeed in her plan to live. She was intelligent, stubborn, and she wasn't overly stupid when it came to her love interest, Quinn.

Speaking of which, am I just say thank you to the author for not making the romance distracting to the overall story? Because I was quite happy that this didn't happen. I was quite happy that the plot focused more on Tate's struggle, rather than on Tate and Quinn. It was beautiful.

And, despite being a bit predictable, the plot still did hold my interest most of the time, because the story idea was so different from anything I had read before. I can't really give away what happens to Tate, but it is definitely not something typically put into Dystopian novels.

My thoughts on this book are a bit conflicted, because while I liked it, it could have been better. However, I still think that it will be appealing to readers, so I will still recommend it.


  1. I can understand how you feel about the dystopian pattern. Most dystopians do happen that way. I guess it's just more effective or something. Great review!

    1. Yeah, I guess. I used to be fine with it, but now, it's become so predictable. :/


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