Release: 9th July 2017
Synopsis: Rose is dying. Her body is wasted and skeletal. She is too sick and weak to move. Every day is an agony and her only hope is that death will find her swiftly before the pain grows too great to bear.
She is sixteen years old.
Rose has made peace with her fate, but her younger sister, Koren, certainly has not. Though all hope appears lost Koren convinces Rose to make one final attempt at saving her life after a mysterious man in a white lab coat approaches their family about an unorthodox and experimental procedure. A copy of Rose’s radiant mind is uploaded to a massive super computer called Aaru – a virtual paradise where the great and the righteous might live forever in an arcadian world free from pain, illness, and death. Elysian Industries is set to begin offering the service to those who can afford it and hires Koren to be their spokes-model.
Within a matter of weeks, the sisters’ faces are nationally ubiquitous, but they soon discover that neither celebrity nor immortality is as utopian as they think. Not everyone is pleased with the idea of life everlasting for sale.
What unfolds is a whirlwind of controversy, sabotage, obsession, and danger. Rose and Koren must struggle to find meaning in their chaotic new lives and at the same time hold true to each other as Aaru challenges all they ever knew about life, love, and death and everything they thought they really believed.
This book was emotional from the start to finish, and also written so well, you’ll be begging for the next book.
The start of the book almost brought me to tears, it was so well written and emotional that I completely empathised with Koren as soon as it began. Her character is so well developed and so real that I couldn’t help but relate to her as soon as I met her. She has such realistic characteristics of any teenage girl, it was easy to relate to her!
I love the idea behind the computer system Aaru, and as it’s something that would be widely sought after in this world, it wasn’t hard for me to understand what emotions Rose’s family were feeling, I loved that so much. It was such a unique idea, and was executed brilliantly.
There were however elements that left me a little creeped out, such as the Magic Man’s fascination with Koren. It was brilliantly written, and left me feeling grossed out in all the right places, but for me personally sometimes it was a little too much!
Having said that overall the book was written brilliantly, and I loved how we got to see what it was like to live in Aaru from Rose’s perspective. There is so much mystery in there, I felt like I was praying every chapter would be from inside Aaru because the world building was so brilliant!
The realism of Koren becoming such an idol at a young age was done so well, and I felt like I went on the ride with her. Her perspective was so honest, I loved it and her character development too. She is so driven by her sister and it was their relatonship that really stood out for me.
I’ve never read anything like this book, but I absolutely can’t wait to read the second book. It was wonderfully sci-fi with elements of emotional torment, and scenes that some may find harrowing. The ending was just what you’d want, not too much of a clifhanger but enough to keep you wanting more!
You can buy Aaru on Amazon UK here!
*NOTE: I was sent this book in return for an honest review and that is what I have written. All opinions are my own and are completely truthful.*