BLOG TOUR – Seventeen by Suzanne Lowe

I WAS SENT A FREE COPY OF THIS BOOK IN RETURN FOR AN UNBIASED REVIEW

‘”If you want to survive you’re going to have to learn to be ruthless.” It was the last thing he said to Lexi before he left them. What he really meant was, she was going to have to learn how to be a total bitch’

www.theillustrators.com.au
http://www.theillustrators.com.au

Imagine a world where everything you grew up with is gone. No adults, no internet, no rules.
The world is facing the deadliest virus ever known.
When the KV17 virus kills everyone above the age of seventeen, life becomes a battle of survival for the children left behind. Seeking to escape the escalating violence in the city, two sisters, Lexi and Hadley flee to the Australian outback. Finding sanctuary in the small town of Jasper’s Bay, they soon realise it is far from safe, as a gang of lawless teenagers terrorise the town. Caught in a bitter feud leading to betrayal, deceit and murder, the girls must quickly uncover who their enemies are, and who they can trust. In a world drastically changed from everything they once knew; can the sisters and children of Jasper’s Bay learn to adapt? Can they maintain control of their town, and protect it from those who would destroy it?

What I thought

Recently there seems to be an uprising of books/TV where kids are left in charge. Some are amazing and some not so great, this one is definitely closer to the amazing side. I love that Lexi is so naive in the beginning; the virus wouldn’t hit Australia cause it’s too far removed, well Australia is big so it’ll die out before it reaches here, it’s here but it’s not going to effect us, Mum’s just got the flu, it can’t take both of them. It’s such a real look at what it’s like for teenagers. Yes, there are terrible things happening on the other side of the world but your life is mostly just confined to your town and the world can feel very big. Especially in Australia, it’s a country that has many time zones and you have to drive for HOURS to get to the next town over, it’s a 5 hour plane journey from one side of the country to the other and just as long to the next country (apart from New Zealand which is a 3 hour journey but still has a massive time difference, I know because I did it last year). And yes the world is getting smaller with social media and there is no denying that teens there are teens changing the world, but there’s also no denying that due to the lack of experience gained with age some of the problems/concerns that a teenager might think of as THE WORST to an adult can be fairly minor. It’s just a different sense of scale.  When it is clear the virus is impacting Australia and school is cancelled, she’s more annoyed that she’s not going to see her friends every day than she is worried that her parents might get sick and die. There’s an immortality in being young, you can’t imagine ever being old, let alone being sick and dying.

It’s that sense of immortality that this book captures really well. Even when all the adults are dead and Lexi and Hadley are in Jasper’s Bay it’s only the oldest few who are worried about what might happen. None of them think there could be any issues with their electricity (entirely solar powered) and therefore they’ll still have a food supply from the shops and storage to last them long enough to grow their own food and can set up a breeding program on the farm so they’ll have a supply of meat too. The worst has already happened, they’ve watched their parents die so there is no use thinking about what can go wrong. You’ve just got to make it work. And besides if you have electricity you can watch DVDs, listen to music, play computer games. Yes, there will be more work involved in the food and the older kids have to grow up quickly to look after the younger ones but life actually isn’t completely different.

I really liked the relationship between Lexi and Hadley, it felt like a real and honest relationship. They are both thrown into this mad and unexpected situation and yet they cling together and niggle at each other when needed (Hadley constantly teases Lexi’s bad driving skills). It’s a relationship that rings of truth, they love each other and Lexi would do almost anything to keep her sister safe and happy and yet they can still drive each other up the wall.

The only bad notes I have to say about this one is that the romance felt forced and seemed to come out of nowhere – almost as if the author had suddenly been told that because this was YA there needed to be a romance in it to sell, which is bull but something I have seen many people say – and the gang of kids felt a bit too extreme.

Why I read it

I was offered a free copy for review and thought it sounded interesting. Plus there aren’t that many dystopias set in Australia or New Zealand, which is weird. You’d think it would be perfect as a setting because it is so cut off from the rest of the world.

Final Thought

I really enjoyed this one and have put the sequel (August 2019) on my TBR. Yes I didn’t need the romance but the relationships between the other teens/kids made up for it as did the love Lexi and Hadley clearly have for each other.

I also like the way the virus mutates so it does start affecting the older teens and I’m looking forward to seeing that part of the story expand and grow in the sequel

Am I glad I read it? Yes
Did I enjoy it? Yes
Would I read it again? Maybe
Would I recommend? Yes

Author bio:

Suzanne was born in Perth Western Australia and as a young adult grew up in the small country town of Tom Price situated in the outback of Western Australia. Her current home is in Perth with her husband, two daughters, and cat Abby

Suzanne has a Bachelor of Science Degree, majoring in Sports Science. Her interests include watching movies, particularly sci- fi, travelling, photography and reading. She also enjoys going to the occasional comic book convention! 

Like the young women in her stories, Suzanne has had the opportunity to experience many exciting adventures in her life so far including being part of the Australian Army Reserves, climbing to Mt Everest base camp, descending into one of the pyramids at Giza in Egypt, flying in a hot air balloon over the Valley of the Kings, parachuting from a plane at 12000 feet in York and sitting on the edge of an active volcano on Tanna island in Vanuatu.

Suzanne is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators and the Australian Society of Authors.

2019 Challenges:

PopSugar: About a family, multiple POVs

Purchase links: UK & USA (amazon)

Thanks, as always, to Rachel for organising the blog tour and to everyone involved in the publishing of this book.
Please let me know what you think, it really makes a big difference and every comment makes me smile.

Rea

P.S I’ve got another couple of reviews sitting in draft but they are only in expanded bullet point format at the moment. But I am working on my backlog and not just Blog Tours.

2 thoughts on “BLOG TOUR – Seventeen by Suzanne Lowe

  1. Thank you for taking the time to review my book Rea, I really enjoyed reading your comments. I hope you enjoy the sequel to Seventeen which will be out soon.
    Suzanne ☺️

    Like

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