Welcome to Refracted Light’s
blog tour stop!
sponsored by YA Bound
Seventeen-year-old Thalli has always known that she’s a little odd, that she doesn’t fit in the perfect world she’s been created for. Her world has suppressed, even tried to breed out, emotion. Love, faith, hope – these are all foreign and forbidden concepts. Expressing individuality is frowned upon, and all that matters is an individual’s usefulness and efficiency so that one may better serve the State. But Thalli feels too deeply, is too curious, always has questions, is never content to take things at face value. She hides these feelings and impulses the best she can from those who watch over her and instead plays them out through her music, because to reveal her anomalies would mean certain annihilation… until one day, she’s discovered. She’s taken from her Pod, placed under observation by the Scientists where she learns things about her world, about the way the world used to be, about faith, about love, about purpose, about trust, about the difference between surviving and truly living.
I loved Thalli’s gradual journey to self-awareness and faith. Her inner monologue is just beautiful, the way she sees everything from the perspective of a musician, and her analogies are gorgeous. Her musings and realizations are so heartfelt, and endearing, and poignant, and, though set in a world so unfamiliar to our own, very relevant.
The future McGee has created is terrifying in it’s emotionless quest for scientific pursuit, for efficiency, for perfection. She does a fantastic job with building this world throughout, fleshing it out and giving us a view of the horrors encountered when man plays God. It’s just a very well done, detailed world.
Now, I’ve hinted throughout the review, but feel like I should make mention that this book is very faith-based and would definitely fall under the umbrella of Christian fiction. I didn’t know that originally when I signed up for this blog tour, but since I share the basis of the author’s worldview, it was interesting to read something well-written from a Christian perspective. I just thought it worth mentioning since some people can be rather adverse to religious themes in novels. However, though I think the themes McGee incorporated into Anomaly are very important and very true, I feel like those parts of the book aren’t quite as strong and did come across feeling a little forced.
There were also a few things about the story – plot points and developmental things – that I had trouble taking seriously… which I can’t tell you about, because that’d just be spoilery. However, despite the few things I had issues with, Anomaly as a whole sucked me in and I flew through this book in an evening.
Other things I liked:
Berk. He’s pretty lovable, resourceful, genuine, compassionate, has a surprising sense of humor and is refreshingly… real. He’s tough, but he’s not indestructible.
Romance. This romance was intense, sweet and satisfying, but very clean. If I was rating it, it’d get a “G.” Seriously, Disney princesses get more action. And though it’s definitely a part of the story as Thalli is learning about what love is, it’s not an overwhelming part or the focus.
Overall. Anomaly is an intriguing, faith-based take on the dystopian genre, and I’m very interested in seeing what happens next in the series.