Tuesday, January 20, 2015

[Book Review] Tunnel Vision by Susan Adrian

Tunnel Vision by Susan Adrian

Publication Date: January 20, 2015
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Genre: Young Adult Paranormal
Source: eARC courtesy of St. Martin's Griffin


Jake Lukin just turned 18. He's decent at tennis and Halo, and waiting to hear on his app to Stanford. But he's also being followed by a creep with a gun, and there's a DARPA agent waiting in his bedroom. His secret is blown.

When Jake holds a personal object, like a pet rock or a ring, he has the ability to "tunnel" into the owner. He can sense where they are, like a human GPS, and can see, hear, and feel what they do. It's an ability the government would do anything to possess: a perfect surveillance unit who could locate fugitives, spies, or terrorists with a single touch.

Jake promised his dad he’d never tell anyone about his ability. But his dad died two years ago, and Jake slipped. If he doesn't agree to help the government, his mother and sister may be in danger. Suddenly he's juggling high school, tennis tryouts, flirting with Rachel Watkins, and work as a government asset, complete with 24-hour bodyguards.

Forced to lie to his friends and family, and then to choose whether to give up everything for their safety, Jake hopes the good he's doing—finding kidnap victims and hostages, and tracking down terrorists—is worth it. But he starts to suspect the good guys may not be so good after all. With Rachel's help, Jake has to try to escape both good guys and bad guys and find a way to live his own life instead of tunneling through others. 
(Courtesy of Goodreads)

My Review

Note: I received and advance readers copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This is a spoiler free review.

I enjoyed Susan Adrian’s debut, Tunnel Vision. I don’t normally read books with paranormal elements because I’ve been kind of scared away by paranormal romances. However, if more paranormal books were like Tunnel Vision I would pick them up. The main thing I liked was the story itself. Without giving away any spoilers, it was a rollercoaster of a book. There were ups and downs and twists and sometimes I did not know how Jake was going to get himself out of a situation. I loved how the story built on itself effortlessly.

My main problem was the pacing at the end of the book. The last fifty pages felt really rushed, like Adrian was trying to squeeze in as much information as possible. There was a point about fifty pages toward the end where I thought one of the character's realizations would be the main plot point of the sequel. However, it turned out to be resolved before the end of the book, and it was kind of disappointing. My guess is because there is no planned sequel at the moment so she needed to wrap everything up by the end of this book. I just wished Adrian had spent a little more time on the events that transpired toward the end or maybe taken out a few so that it wouldn’t feel so rushed.

The strong point of this book was the characters. They all felt very realistic and well developed. Jake, the protagonist, had so many other traits other than the obvious supernatural one of “tunneling”. He has goals (Stanford) and ambitions (historian at the Smithsonian). I feel like a lot of YA books let these long term dreams that teenagers realistically have fall by the wayside in favor of more immediate goals. I especially loved the relationship between Jake and his twelve-year-old sister Myka. You don't see many strong sibling relationships in YA these days, especially between siblings with such different ages.  Also points for not love triangle. While there was some romance (what 18 year old isn’t thinking about girls), it was never in the forefront of the story. In general, I loved the character relationships and dynamics and that’s what made it a great story.

Overall, Tunnel Vision was a solid book. Even though I would not consider it one of my favorites I would definitely recommend it for a fun fast paced read. I loved that it had a male narrator and minimal romance and a lot of action and suspense. If there is ever a sequel, I will definitely be picking it up.

3 out of 5 stars

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