March 20, 2015

Book Review: Duplicity

DuplicityTitle: Duplicity.
Author: N.K. Traver.
Series: No.
Pages: 256.
Source: Publisher, For Review.
Publisher: Thomas Dunne Books.
Published Date: 3/17/15.
Links:
Book Depository
Goodreads

"A computer-hacking teen. The girl who wants to save him. And a rogue mirror reflection that might be the death of them both.

In private, seventeen-year-old Brandon hacks bank accounts just for the thrill of it. In public, he looks like any other tattooed bad boy with a fast car and devil-may-care attitude. He should know: he’s worked hard to maintain that fa├žade. With inattentive parents who move constantly from city to city, he’s learned not to get tangled up in things like friends and relationships. So he’ll just keep living like a machine, all gears and wires.

Then two things shatter his carefully-built image: Emma, the kind, stubborn girl who insists on looking beneath the surface – and the small matter of a mirror reflection that starts moving by itself. Not only does Brandon’s reflection have a mind of its own, but it seems to be grooming him for something—washing the dye from his hair, yanking out his piercings, swapping his black shirts for … pastels. Then it tells him: it thinks it can live his life better, and it’s preparing to trade places.

And when it pulls Brandon through the looking-glass, not only will he need all his ill-gotten hacking skills to escape, but he’s going to have to face some hard truths about who he’s become. Otherwise he’ll be stuck in a digital hell until he’s old and gray, and no one will even know he's gone."

My Review:

Before I completely jump into my review of Duplicity, I want to explain why this review is up today, instead of it's release day (Tuesday). I had finished reading the book, was excited to finally be able to review, but just couldn't do it. Tuesday I had two finals, one in the morning (where I studied the entire night before) and one at night (where I studied the entire day of). Wednesday I was called in early to work, meaning I worked a 9 hour shift, and yesterday was my first official day off from school and work; where I cleaned the slob bathroom I've been dealing with the beginning of last week and did some much needed shopping.

So long story short, I couldn't get it up because a little bit of life got in the way. But I'm here today and I'm EXCITED to be able to tell you all about Duplicity!

The world we live in today completely revolves around technology; everything we do involves it in one way or another. Computers, cell phones, radios, etc. Everywhere you go and look, technology surrounds us. As well as hackers, who try to steal our personal information.

One of those hackers is named Brandon; a misunderstood junior in high school, that spends most of his time hacking others' computers and accounts looking for social security numbers. While he is well known in the hacking community, and able to hack into anything without any troubles, his real life is a whole different thing. He is still dealing with the break up with his ex, he isn't keeping up with school, and his parents believe that he is a failure.

Brandon is at the point in his life where he thinks everything is pointless. He doesn't see why he needs to go to classes, he doesn't understand why his parents treat him like a convict, and he doesn't see the point of having friends, let alone a girlfriend. He spends most of his time hacking. But his mind starts to change a bit, after a encounter with a girl named Emma. Emma attends school, does good in classes, and catches Brandon's attention whenever she walks into the room. Emma is above Brandon's level, and he knows it. Doing what he does to everyone that gets close to him he starts to push her away, but it isn't that easy when it comes to her. He can't seem to get her out of his mind.

Life is normal as Brandon has just finished another hacking job, but as he is about to shut off his computer something goes wrong. He's computer is acting strange, and words start to make their way across the screen. Brandon can't believe that someone is trying to hack him...but as he has no other option he switches off the internet, but as Brandon glances one more time at his screen, the words continue to appear...

Brandon isn't sure how this is happening...but he knows someone is messing with him, threatening him about hacking. But how?

He decides it's nothing, and heads off. But as he passes the mirror in his room, he notices something. Something strange and impossible...his mirror image isn't mirroring him...


As the day goes on, and Brandon walks past a mirror, things are changing. He starts to lose his piercings one at a time, his tattoos start coming off, his "permanent" hair dye simply washes out. Brandon doesn't know what's going on, or who is doing this to him, but it's getting worse and worse.

Of course Emma is worried, and Brandon has no one else to tell, he decides to spill to her everything that has been going on the last few days. AND of course she doesn't believe him, and instead thinks he is making all of these changes for her.

That is until he gets sucked into a mirror, replaced by a look-a-like and is basically a slave to hacking through a secret government program. Brandon is suppose to spend the next twenty years of his life there, while his look-a-like becomes a good citizen to society! As if you want to know how this all works out, you're going to have to read the book for yourself!


There are a lot of things that caught my attention, and things that I enjoyed. Including the cast of characters; Brandon was a teenage kid who doesn't really know who he is, or want he wants to do. His parents are living in their own personal bubbles, always judging Brandon, but never giving the time of day. Emma is the little bit of light in his life, that soon starts leading his way.

Besides that I LOVED the entire idea of this "project" and the fact that the government is behind the entire thing. What a COOL idea?! Hackers are hard to catch, and why put them into a prison cell, if we could use their skills?

I generally enjoyed Duplicity, but I wish some things were explained more and not left untold. For example, the history behind the project; I really wanted to know how this entire thing started, and how they were able to run it without anyone truly knowing. I also want to know more about who Seb was and what happened to him/her. And lastly, what Tanner's (Emma's older brother) problem was with Brandon?

Overall I loved Duplicity! It was a book I was looking forward to read..that I didn't know about until it was offered to me! I've been meaning to read more books from male's perspectives and loved the whole idea of him being a hacker.

The ending sounded like there might be a second installment...if there is, I will be the first one in line to buy it!



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