Debbie's World of Books
My book reviews, book news & random rants

Starters by Lissa Price

March 14th, 2012 by Debbie's World of Books

Starters by Lissa Price

Source: Borrowed from a friend

Publication date: March 13, 2012

Publisher: Delacrote Press

I give this book 5 out of 5 stars

Summary from Callie lost her parents when the Spore Wars wiped out everyone between the ages of twenty and sixty. She and her little brother, Tyler, go on the run, living as squatters with their friend Michael and fighting off renegades who would kill them for a cookie. Callie’s only hope is Prime Destinations, a disturbing place in Beverly Hills run by a mysterious figure known as the Old Man. 

He hires teens to rent their bodies to Enders—seniors who want to be young again. Callie, desperate for the money that will keep her, Tyler, and Michael alive, agrees to be a donor. But the neurochip they place in Callie’s head malfunctions and she wakes up in the life of her renter, living in her mansion, driving her cars, and going out with a senator’s grandson. It feels almost like a fairy tale, until Callie discovers that her renter intends to do more than party—and that Prime Destinations’ plans are more evil than Callie could ever have imagined. . . .

Starters is an amazing book!  It’s hard to believe this is Lissa Price’s debut novel and after finishing this book I am so excited to go see her at a signing in a couple days.  I started this morning on my commute to work and finished it up tonight because it is just that good.

Callie is a great heroine and I loved that she was the perfect blend of savvy and naivety that one would expect of a teenager who has lived through a horrible war that has killed her parents and left her to protector her seven year old brother.  I did not realize at first that the story alludes to her being a Cinderella character until one obvious point where she loses one of her shoes at a “ball”.  Her “prince”, Blake, was a sweet, rich kid who doesn’t  have to worry about being  unclaimed because he has rich grandparents who have taken him in.  I did have some issues with his characters in the beginning but those are finally resolved by the end of the book.  On the other hand I wish we could have seen more of Michael, one of the other unclaimed teenagers that has been helping Callie care for Tyler.  There are strong hints that he and Callie are falling for each other before all goes to hell in a hand basket after Prime Destinations gets their hands on Callie.  Keeping my fingers crossed to see more of him in the next book.

I did have a few issues with the story and questions that made me go “hmmm” but they really did not detract much from the overall story for me.  One question was about how it was decided who got the vaccination from this Spore War.  It’s mentioned several times that people younger than 20 and those older than 60 received the vaccination first because they were the most vulnerable to the disease.  I can understand under 20 but once we start hearing that most of the Elders are 100+ years old it seems strange that 60 year olds would be considered high risk.  That seems more like middle age especially when it appears living to 200 isn’t unusual.  The other odd point for me was Callie’s dad.  I wasn’t sure if there was more behind his suspicions and training Callie the way he did or if he was just naturally suspicious and paranoid.

My favorite thing about Starters by Lissa Price is that it was full of surprises.  There were certain twists that I had suspicions about and then there were the ones that came as a total shock to me.  I feel like lately there are a lot of formulaic plots in dystopian stories so readers can guess pretty easily what’s coming up but Price had a way of writing that will shock you and then make you want to go back and re-read certain sections once you know the truth.

Definitely pick this book up!  It’s a quick read that I enjoyed immensely and cannot wait for the sequel.

Posted in 5 Star Books, Books, Dystopia, Young Adult

6 Responses

  1. Bibliotropic

    I have a copy of this one but haven’t gotten around to reading it yet. Shame, because everything I hear about it says that it’s a pretty good book! Glad to know you enjoyed it so much.

  2. April Books & Wine

    I did like the red herring-esque bits. Where we get those huge surprises and like you said, get to go back and see just why it was so different.

    And my big question was why does it seem like all of the Enders hate the Starters, except the ones they are related to, so much?

    Anyways, loved your review and how Starters was basically a one day read for you as well!

  3. Ree Anderson

    I also gave this one 5 stars. I agree with you about the questions that come up (and I mentioned as much in my review of the book), but for me it didn’t take away enough from the story for me to bother fussing over all that much. I am curious to see if loose ends are handled nicely in Enders…I expect it’ll be a good read, though, regardless! :)

  4. Katrina

    Oooh, this sounds like a great read. I shall have to check it out. Thank you!

    I tagged you in the Lucky 7 Meme, ’cause I love your blog. :)

  5. Debbie's World of Books

    Bibliotropic-you should go read it! It’s really quick.

    April-thanks! I wonder if it’s because society has become so superficial they just despise them their youth.

    Ree-I can’t wait for Enders too. I’m glad this is a duology instead of a trilogy.

    Katrina-Definitely check it out. It’s a fun read.

  6. Kailana

    I have been hearing lots of good things about this book. I am glad you enjoyed it!

Leave a Comment

Please note: Comment moderation is enabled and may delay your comment. There is no need to resubmit your comment.