Tuesday, April 23, 2013

The Rules by Stacey Kade [ARC REVIEW]

TITLE: The Rules
            (Project Paper Doll #1)
AUTHOR: Stacey Kade
PUBLISHER: Disney-Hyperion
PUB DATE: Apr 23 2013
Summary from Goodreads:

"1. Never trust anyone.

2. Remember they are always searching.

3. Don’t get involved.

4. Keep your head down.

5. Don’t fall in love.

Five simple rules. Ariane Tucker has followed them since the night she escaped from the genetics lab where she was created, the result of combining human and extraterrestrial DNA. Ariane’s survival—and that of her adoptive father—depends on her ability to blend in among the full-blooded humans in a small Wisconsin town, to hide in plain sight at her high school from those who seek to recover their lost (and expensive) “project.”

But when a cruel prank at school goes awry, it puts her in the path of Zane Bradshaw, the police chief’s son and someone who sees too much. Someone who really sees her. After years of trying to be invisible, Ariane finds the attention frightening—and utterly intoxicating. Suddenly, nothing is simple anymore, especially not the rules…"


They walk among us... Doesn’t that phrase immediately make you think of alien-conspiracies? Well, that is the kind of vibe that The Rules gives off.

Meet Ariane Tucker, a simple high school student... except she’s not really Ariane Tucker. She is an extra-terrestrial being who has taken the name of a girl who died from cancer, hiding in plain sight after escaping the GTX facility where she was used as an experiment.

Arianne’s life was the picture of a typical high school environment, only slightly more different. Where we normally find our protagonist either struggling or acing her school works, we find a girl with advanced intelligence but hides it and tries to be an average student instead. Where we usually encounter a girl wanting to be either in the in crowd or making a statement of her own, we find someone who wishes to be invisible or non-existent. Where we often see girls/guys pining over the opposite sex and trying to score a date with him/her, we find someone who does not bother to involve herself at all.

Knowing the summary of the story beforehand gave me the idea that The Rules was a sci-fi novel. It turned out to be more of a paranormal romance kind instead. But that didn’t hinder me from enjoying the story all the same.

One other phrase I can think of while reading this is: “It’s a small world”. Seriously, everyone is connected to GTX one way or the other. It makes for an interesting ploy on how each one would serve a purpose to the plot. It also seemed funny to me that Ariane and Zane’s story kind of reminds me of “A Walk to Remember”, you know: bad boy turning good, girl not allowed to date, guy and girl teaming up for a common cause/interest – we all know where this is going...

Normally stories like this don’t really excite me that much, also considering it had less action scenes than I expected (thinking alien-search/chasing would involve a lot of powers, guns and all things crazy), but The Rules got me in the mood of eagerly wanting to see what happens next. Not that I want Ariane to be caught or something, but just out of curiosity on how it would all play out. The back stories, although lengthy at times, also helped give me the sense of need/want to get to know the characters deeper.

To be honest, the story isn’t exactly ground breaking, it’s a little predictable even: escaped alien, hides from villains, meets boy, falls in love, gets caught, then escapes again in the end. Really that’s how I pictured it when I started reading the book. And unsurprisingly, that was the gist of the whole thing, but the execution and entirety of this book was beautiful.

*Thank you, Disney-Hyperion and NetGalley for the copy of The Rules.

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