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What's Left of Me by Kat Zhang
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What's Left of Me (original 2012; edition 2012)

by Kat Zhang

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320None34,593 (3.74)4
Member:readr
Title:What's Left of Me
Authors:Kat Zhang
Info:HarperCollins Children's Books (2012), Paperback
Collections:Your library, 2012 Honorable Mention
Rating:****
Tags:fiction, dystopia, identity, teen

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What's left of me by Kat Zhang (2012)

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English (53)  Italian (2)  All languages (55)
Showing 1-5 of 53 (next | show all)
One of the coolest, most thought-provoking concepts I've come across in YA. This is some incredibly deep, high-concept sci-fi while still keeping the pace and rhythm of YA. Loved it. ( )
  EMaree | Feb 11, 2014 |
What's Left of Me explores what it might be like to be an unwelcome guest in your own body, within your own mind. In this world, each body is born inhabited by two souls. By age 7, most children have "settled", meaning the recessive soul has faded away leaving only the dominant soul. When this doesn't happen, those left with two souls past puberty are considered hybrid. Hybrids are considered sick and dangerous and are sought out by the government to be hospitalized and corrected.

Addie is the dominant soul in this story, Eva the recessive. They have spent the past few years pretending that Eva has faded until a schoolmate finds out their secret. The schoolmate, Hally, and her brother Devin are also secretly hybrids as well as being foreign which means they are distrusted in the current political climate. Eva wants to trust them but Addie isn't so sure, the consequences if their secret were revealed could be deadly.

The story is told from Eva's point of view and was at times very poignant as I was forced to consider what it would be like having to constantly live in my own head pretending that I don't exist to the outside world. The relationship between Addie and Eva felt genuine and the feeling between the two was expressed beautifully in the dialog they shared. With two souls inhabiting the body of each of the characters, you would think that the story would be confusing. Surprisingly, it was not. Each soul had their own individual voice and were easily identified.

I think that Eva was an especially well written character. Her great longing to be acknowledged, her loneliness, and her genuine love for Addie was beautifully expressed and I found myself continually drawn to her.

I enjoyed the unusual storyline, the relationships between the characters, and the beautiful writing that compelled me to continue reading late into the night. If I have one complaint about What's Left of Me it is that I would have liked to have had more information about the world and why children were born with two souls and why not settling is considered so dangerous.
( )
  ahappybooker | Feb 7, 2014 |
What's Left of Me explores what it might be like to be an unwelcome guest in your own body, within your own mind. In this world, each body is born inhabited by two souls. By age 7, most children have "settled", meaning the recessive soul has faded away leaving only the dominant soul. When this doesn't happen, those left with two souls past puberty are considered hybrid. Hybrids are considered sick and dangerous and are sought out by the government to be hospitalized and corrected.

Addie is the dominant soul in this story, Eva the recessive. They have spent the past few years pretending that Eva has faded until a schoolmate finds out their secret. The schoolmate, Hally, and her brother Devin are also secretly hybrids as well as being foreign which means they are distrusted in the current political climate. Eva wants to trust them but Addie isn't so sure, the consequences if their secret were revealed could be deadly.

The story is told from Eva's point of view and was at times very poignant as I was forced to consider what it would be like having to constantly live in my own head pretending that I don't exist to the outside world. The relationship between Addie and Eva felt genuine and the feeling between the two was expressed beautifully in the dialog they shared. With two souls inhabiting the body of each of the characters, you would think that the story would be confusing. Surprisingly, it was not. Each soul had their own individual voice and were easily identified.

I think that Eva was an especially well written character. Her great longing to be acknowledged, her loneliness, and her genuine love for Addie was beautifully expressed and I found myself continually drawn to her.

I enjoyed the unusual storyline, the relationships between the characters, and the beautiful writing that compelled me to continue reading late into the night. If I have one complaint about What's Left of Me it is that I would have liked to have had more information about the world and why children were born with two souls and why not settling is considered so dangerous.
( )
  ahappybooker | Feb 7, 2014 |
Eva and Addie are twin souls in one body - in a somewhat vague future world where "hybrids" (two people/souls in one body) are not unheard of, but not acceptable in society. Through Eva's narration, we learn that many hybrids usually naturally develop into one person: one soul remains dominant, and the other recedes by late childhood. But Eva/Addie aren't so easily suppressed, yet, Eva tries to silence herself -"disappear" - knowing that her parents have enough struggle with their little brother Lyle who is ill and must get proper treatment. But Hally, a new friend at school, persists in drawing Eva/Addie in, and they soon discover that they aren't the only hybrids who may not truly b "settled", in spite of what the doctors and school attempt to do. Hally's brother Devon is also more than he seems, and the story begins to pick up the pace when Eva/Addie's behavior is noted by the authorities. She and Hally and Devon are sent to a scientific hospital, Nornand, in order to be studied and "settled" once and for all. But when Eva/Addie discover how they are treating even the youngest of the inmates, she knows she must leave - the challenge will be if she can take all of the patients with her. Definitely a psychological study of "twin souls" within one person - and how society treats individuals- but with enough action and conflict by the second half to encourage teen readers to hang in there til the end. ( )
  BDartnall | Oct 22, 2013 |
What's Left of Me explores what it might be like to be an unwelcome guest in your own body, within your own mind. In this world, each body is born inhabited by two souls. By age 7, most children have "settled", meaning the recessive soul has faded away leaving only the dominant soul. When this doesn't happen, those left with two souls past puberty are considered hybrid. Hybrids are considered sick and dangerous and are sought out by the government to be hospitalized and corrected.

Addie is the dominant soul in this story, Eva the recessive. They have spent the past few years pretending that Eva has faded until a schoolmate finds out their secret. The schoolmate, Hally, and her brother Devin are also secretly hybrids as well as being foreign which means they are distrusted in the current political climate. Eva wants to trust them but Addie isn't so sure, the consequences if their secret were revealed could be deadly.

The story is told from Eva's point of view and was at times very poignant as I was forced to consider what it would be like having to constantly live in my own head pretending that I don't exist to the outside world. The relationship between Addie and Eva felt genuine and the feeling between the two was expressed beautifully in the dialog they shared. With two souls inhabiting the body of each of the characters, you would think that the story would be confusing. Surprisingly, it was not. Each soul had their own individual voice and were easily identified.

I think that Eva was an especially well written character. Her great longing to be acknowledged, her loneliness, and her genuine love for Addie was beautifully expressed and I found myself continually drawn to her.

I enjoyed the unusual storyline, the relationships between the characters, and the beautiful writing that compelled me to continue reading late into the night. If I have one complaint about What's Left of Me it is that I would have liked to have had more information about the world and why children were born with two souls and why not settling is considered so dangerous.
( )
  a.happy.booker | Sep 24, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 53 (next | show all)
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Dedication
For my mother and father, in thanks for everything they have taught me about life
First words
Addie and I were born into the same body, our souls' ghostly fingers entwined before we gasped our first breath.
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"Eva and Addie started out the same way as everyone else-- two souls woven together in one body, taking turns controlling their movements as they learned how to walk, how to sing, how to dance. But as they grew, so did the worried whispers. Why aren't they settling? Why isn't one of them fading? The doctors ran tests, the neighbors shied away, and their parents begged for more time. Finally Addie was pronounced healthy and Eva was declared gone. Except, she wasn't. For the past three years, Eva has clung to the remnants of her life. Only Addie knows she's still there, trapped inside their body. Then one day, they discover there may be a way for Eva to move again. The risks are unimaginable-- hybrids are considered a threat to society, so if they are caught, Addie and Eva will be locked away with the others. And yet-- for a chance to smile, to twirl, to speak, Eva will do anything" -- from publisher's web site.… (more)

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