Recollections: Reviews by a Book Lover


Review: Noggin

Image Cover photo from Goodreads

Noggin by John Corey Whaley

 I won an Advanced Reader Copy from the publisher through a Goodreads giveaway

The Cover Story:  I love the cover of Noggin.  It’s funny and it’s fitting.  I have to admit I hated the cover of the hardcover edition of Whaley’s first book, Where Things Come Back (sorry!) (the cover of the paperback was much better).  Noggin’s cover, however, is the type of cover that makes me pick up a book and say I wonder what this book is about?  It’s perfect!

 What it’s about: Travis Ray Coates has cancer.  The doctors have done everything they can, but the cancer has spread too far.  There is one chance though.  Travis can have is head cut off and frozen, with the hope that someday doctors can reanimate him on another body.  Travis decides to do this, not because he thinks they will ever be able to bring him back, but because he is tired and nothing else is going to work.  So Travis says goodbye to his parents, his best friend, and his girlfriend, and he goes into surgery.  Then Travis Coates wakes up.  His parents are standing by his bed when he opens his eyes looking just as they did when he closed them, and he figures the surgery must not have worked.  What Travis doesn’t realize upon waking, is that what feels like a few minutes to him has really been five years.  Five years, that’s it!  Medicine progressed enough that in only five years doctors were able to connect Travis’ head to another body, and wake him up.  Travis never though it would work, and on the off chance it did he thought it would be long after everyone he loved was dead.  Now he is back, and still 16 years old, but everyone else is has grown up and mourned the loss of Travis.

What I Thought:  Travis was alive, then dead, then alive again.  It’s an amazing thing.  What is even more amazing is it all happened in such a short amount of time.  In 5 years a lot changes though.  It’s hard for Travis though, he has to adjust to the fact that although no time has passed for him it has for everyone else.  Travis has to finish high school, while his friends are now all in college.  Noggin touches on a lot of issues.  No one knew if the surgery would work or when they would be able to bring Travis back if it was possible, so his friends, family, and girlfriend had to mourn him as if he had died.  It was the only way they could move on.  Everyone is trying to adjust to this new reality now that Travis is back.  Travis has a hard time coping because he can’t accept the fact everything has changed, and you can’t blame him.  I had to ask myself what would be worse: waking up so far in the future, everyone you love is dead or waking up after just enough years the people you love have moved on and changed without you?  Honestly I don’t know which I would prefer.  The idea of never seeing the people I love anymore makes waking up seem pointless, but waking up and having to deal with how much has changed also seems painful. I felt for Travis and all he was going through.  At times I thought he was acting selfish, and in other moments I felt so bad for him my heart ached.

How do you start living again?  That’s the question Travis has to figure out the answer to.

Noggin was an amazing and I highly recommend it!


Review: Nobody

Nobody by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Nobody

What It’s About: 16 year old Nix is a Nobody. Nobodies are ignored, unnoticed, unloved. They come and go without anyone taking notice. This makes Nix a good assassin. 16 year old Claire has gone through her life unnoticed. She has no friends and absent parents. She has led an ordinary life, which is why she doesn’t understand why anyone would want to kill her. Nix has never questioned his orders, but when Claire meets his eyes and actually sees him it causes him to question everything he believes.

What I Thought: Claire has no idea why no one ever seems to see her. She has gone through life feeling as though no one loved her. It’s hard to blame her for feeling sorry for herself, even though you know from the start that, like Nix, Claire is a Nobody. Finding out she is a Nobody changes everything for Claire. She finally understands why no matter how hard she tried no one ever cared to pay her any attention. Every shy unnoticed girl in high school wishes she went unnoticed not because of any fault of their own but because in reality they are special. Not only are they special they are powerful. Once Nix and Claire start to trust each other they start to figure out why the Institute wants Claire dead.

Nobody has mystery, science, and a fast-paced plot. I enjoyed this quick read.