Jul 2, 2011

XVI by Julia Karr

XVI by Julia Karr

Series: XVI, book #1
Next book in series: Truth
Publisher: Speak
Release Date: January 6, 2011
Paperback: 272 Pages
Age Group: Young Adult
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Source: Library
Challenge: Debut Author, A to Z, Support Your Local Library
Overall: 5/5
Nina Oberon's life is pretty normal: she hangs out with her best friend, Sandy, and their crew, goes to school, plays with her little sister, Dee. But Nina is 15. And like all girls she'll receive a Governing Council-ordered tattoo on her 16th birthday. XVI. Those three letters will be branded on her wrist, announcing to all the world-even the most predatory of men-that she is ready for sex. Considered easy prey by some, portrayed by the Media as sluts who ask for attacks, becoming a "sex-teen" is Nina's worst fear. That is, until right before her birthday, when Nina's mom is brutally attacked. With her dying breaths, she reveals to Nina a shocking truth about her past-one that destroys everything Nina thought she knew. Now, alone but for her sister, Nina must try to discover who she really is, all the while staying one step ahead of her mother's killer.

XVI wasn't what I expected--at all. I mean, I heard it was a really good debut. But I didn't know it was going to be this good! At first when I heard about the whole dystopian genre, I wasn't very interested. But after realizing that Scott Westerfeld's Uglies series (Which has been one of my favorite oldie series for a long time.) was dystopian, I knew I had to read more. Then I read the Hunger Games and was sold on dystopian. So when I saw this on the debut author challenge list, I knew I needed to read it, no matter how weird it sounded. 
This is a scary book. And not in the scary horror way, but in a way that makes you afraid of what the future is going to be like. The things you read in dystopian could really come true in the future. Not all of us may see any of it, but our legacy will! 

The whole "sex-teen" thing was scary. I mean, I remember the time when I couldn't wait to be sixteen. That's a few years behind me now, thank God. But how Nina's world is with turning sixteen is just WRONG. I mean, how is it alright for someone to turn sixteen, and then somebody can just go up and rape you and get away with it?!

I'm going to stop talking about that now, or I'm going to keep rambling on about how Nina's government infuriated me. I love the kind of books that evoke emotions out of you. That's when you really know when a book is great. When it evokes the type of emotions out of you that something in the book infuriates you, like a government or something that infuriates the protagonist. If that makes any sense at all. 

I loved Nina. She was a good strong protagonist. Sal creeped me out at times, but he was a great character. He only creeped me out when he was meant to. When Nina was. And Sandy, wow, I'm not going to get to into her character. She annoyed the CRAP out of me. Every time I saw her name on the page I would roll my eyes and be very tempted to skip some of the paragraphs. She was so naive and I just don't understand how Nina put up with her. 

Wei was just.. wow. I loved her! Period. 

Julia's writing is great and flows well. I was done with XVI pretty fast. I would of been able to read it in one sitting if I didn't have stuff that I had to drop the book for. I NEVER wanted to drop it. I wanted to just keep reading and reading and reading, but sadly, I couldn't. 

I was sad when the book ended. I thought it was THE end, but when I got on Goodreads to mark it as read, I realized there is a sequel! I canNOT wait! I want it NOW! =( 

Overall, this is definitely a book to add to your reading list! 

Cover: Love it! Perfect for the story. 


  1. I want to read this and have been waiting for my library to get it! Thanks for the review!
    Truly Bookish

  2. I felt more pity than dislike for Sandy. I almost feel like it wasn't her fault that she was like that, you know? If she'd had Nina's mom instead of her own mom, I wonder if she would have turned into a sexteen.


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