Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Age Group: Young Adult
Buy the Book: Amazon
When you can’t trust yourself, who can you believe?
Everything about Anna’s life is a secret. Her father works for the Branch at the helm of its latest project: monitoring and administering treatments to the four genetically altered boys in the lab below their farmhouse. There’s Nick, Cas, Trev . . . and Sam, who’s stolen Anna’s heart. When the Branch decides it’s time to take the boys, Sam stages an escape, killing the agents sent to retrieve them.
Anna is torn between following Sam or staying behind in the safety of her everyday life. But her father pushes her to flee, making Sam promise to keep her away from the Branch, at all costs. There’s just one problem. Sam and the boys don’t remember anything before living in the lab—not even their true identities.
Now on the run, Anna soon discovers that she and Sam are connected in more ways than either of them expected. And if they’re both going to survive, they must piece together the clues of their past before the Branch catches up to them and steals it all away.
Synopsis and cover taken from Goodreads.
What an action packed and gripping read! My reading Altered was a pure accident. I was scrolling down my goodreads feed when it peaked my interest and I clicked on it to see what it was about. And boy am I glad I did. Within moments my Kobo was the out and I knew what I was doing for the rest of the night, never mind homework!
Altered is about Anna who lives in a farm house with her scientist father. Sounds normal enough, except her father happens to work for a mysterious company called The Branch, and is participating in an experiment called OP Alpha. Cue four hot, genetically altered, superhuman, lab experiment boys with no recollection of their past. And to make things even more interesting they live in her basement! Through a series of explosive events, Anna is forced to go on the run with the boys as they try to remember their past, which becomes increasingly difficult with The Branch sending out muscle to stop them at every turn. At the same time Anna and Sam, the 'leader' of the boys, are inevitably falling for each other. But their journey takes them to discover life altering secrets, not just about the boys but Anna too.
At its very root this book is an action-thriller and I felt that all the components that made up a good action-thriller, at least in my opinion was met with some minor hitches here and there. I felt the plot was very well planned out. Everything fell into place at the proper time. I was excited and even more intrigued with every twist. The writing was clear, vivid and interesting. Altered was a definite plot/writing win for me.
As for the characters, sigh! Let's just say that Anna is one lucky girl. There is Sam the mysterious hero/prodigy and protective leader; Nick the brooding bad boy with a past; Cas the group clown and finally Trev the best friend with an eidetic memory for quotes. The four boys together kind of made the package for me, they were funny, charming and they had a real bond among each other that I enjoyed seeing and reading about.
Anna was a great protagonist, she was curious and head strong as she fought for herself when the boys tried to keep her 'safe' and out of the action. My only problems with the book that I can think of was sadly with Anna's character. I found her to be a bit clingy and childish at times. But thankfully she kind of came into her own as the story progressed and I enjoyed reading about the independent young woman that she was becoming. I can't wait to see how her character and the story progresses as the series continues.
Overall, I found Altered to be an amazing read. It was just what I needed, something different and even refreshing as we come off the dystopia/vampire/werewolf/angel craze. On that note, Altered really reminded me of The Darkest Powers Trilogy by Kelley Armstrong. Probably due to the common topic of human experimentation. So, I recommend this book to fans of Kelly Armstrong's series and all lovers of action-thriller and an all around fun read.