When the MK virus swept across the planet, a vaccine was created to stop the epidemic, but it came with some unexpected side effects. A small percentage of the population developed superhero-like powers. Seventeen-year-old Ciere Giba has the handy ability to change her appearance at will. She’s what’s known as an illusionist…She’s also a thief.
After a robbery goes awry, Ciere must team up with a group of fellow super-powered criminals on another job that most would consider too reckless. The formula for the vaccine that gave them their abilities was supposedly destroyed years ago. But what if it wasn’t?
The lines between good and bad, us and them, and freedom and entrapment are blurred as Ciere and the rest of her crew become embroiled in a deadly race against the government that could cost them their lives. (Synopsis taken from Goodreads)
I had a confession to make; I was expecting this to be a two or three start book. Why? No idea. So I was pleasantly surprised to find this is actually a pretty good book.
This book has two narrators; Ciere, the “good” criminal, and Daniel, the “bad” criminal. It’s set in a world where, years ago, a virus swept across earth, killing almost everyone. A vaccine was invented that helped fight the virus, but there was a problem. Some of the people who got the vaccine became different. They could read people’s minds just by having skin contact or bend and shape the world around them so it appeared to be something completely different or can bend and shape their muscles to become almost unstoppable while fighting. Even though these people make up a very small population of those that received the vaccine, the name “Immune” refers to them.
Ciere is a Illusionist. She can make things appear different (for an example, how she was caught as a kid was making a rosemary sprig appear fully bloomed, even though it was barely even grown). She can make herself look different, as well as the surroundings around her. She, and her best friend, Devon (I can’t remember what is power is called but he was a photographic memory because of it) work for the thief Kit Copperfield in an attempt to avoid the law that would either lock them in prison or try and make them work for the government to try and track down other Immunities. Neither option is all that great.
This book was interesting, fast-paced, and HAD NO ROMANCE. Ciere and Devon’s relationship was purely platonic, and I adored that. No crushes were developed, no kisses exchanged, they were just best friends and only best friends. That was so refreshing that it made me want to give the book a five-star rating just because of it.
The world itself is also quite fascinating. It’s almost recognizable, yet at the same time it isn’t. The MK virus lowered the world’s population by some insane amount, and the fear of Immunities makes it so no one really trusts anyone. You can’t go to the store or even just walk down the street without a little bit of fear, and for Immunities, that fear is heightened, so they have to watch every step they make. An entire hotel can be searched because one Immunity accidentally let someone else see their power.
I have a few problems with the book, as well. I don’t feel like we have enough of Daniel’s POV. We get just enough to know that he no longer works with Kit Copperfield, but not enough to really get a feel for him as a character.
There were a few loose threads, as well. Ciere being tracked by a gang? Rarely mentioned. The ending itself wasn’t what I was hoping nor expected it to be after the rest of the novel. I don’t really know how the second novel with pick up from this one, because the story felt very conclusive. Yes, the world was still horrible, but Ciere and the everyone else were still more or less intact.
Despite that, this was a good book, a fun read, and I recommend it.
Meanwhile, it’s cooling down a bit, which is such a relief because I’ve been slogging through life. Yes. Slogging. I don’t deal with heat that well, which is kind of ironic when you think about it. It’s cooling down enough today that I can make cookies or something, so that’s good (I’ve missed baking).
So…have any of you read Illusive? If so, what did you think? If not, is it on your TBR list? And how do you feel about superhero/super criminal novels? Do you like them or do you prefer stories like that in comic form?