emotions by arnulfo cantarero
overall rating: 3/5
genre: YA, sci-fi
Jason Ariaz is not your average 22 year old. He has been genetically and cybernatically enhanced but that’s only the beginning. He is an emotionless extraterrestrial born to human parents and living amongst us. Both him and his implanted thinking computer were damaged on landing and must go through life as less than what they really are. The purpose of their mission: to gain permanent emotions from the more primitive society that is Earth. If he is successful, he will be the first of his species to do so in nearly 200,000 years.
Hope lies in the fact that he is capable of emotional episodes and he has been able to forge true friendships. However, he does have the chance of completing his mission if he can truly care for Ariel, the closest human in his life. But he better know his heart soon. Their lives are in danger of ending tonight, unless he can recover what his species has lost.
*i received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.*
on first impression, the synopsis of this book seemed intriguing, and i actually really like the premise. i don’t read a lot of sci-fi, but i decided to give it a try. i feel like this premise had a lot of potential but could have been executed better, and i’ll explain why.
the characters… the main character, jason, is not my favorite character. however, his development is okay, if somewhat sudden at some parts. he’s also somewhat realistic (personality-wise), and it’s obvious that he doesn’t know how to interact with humans at first. the other characters feel very flat, and a lot of them seem more like props than actual characters. other than jason, ariel is the only one who we really see more of, while his other friends seem somewhat useless, and they fade into the background. one of his friends is referred to as his “best friend” for much of the book, yet we don’t really learn much about him, nor does he really develop. one of my biggest problems with the characters is the language they use, which sounds awkward and unrealistic to me at many times.
the relationships between the characters are okay, but again, some of his friendships seem pointless,like they’re just filling up time/space in the book. jason also seems to move on suddenly from his friends, but that’s realistic for his character.
the world-building is pretty decent, and we learn a bit about jason’s race through his interactions with computer, but there’s still a lot that’s missing. while it doesn’t really affect your understanding of the story, it feels like we should learn a lot more. there’s a whole other world that we don’t learn that much about, and it just seems like there’s more to know that isn’t in the book.
the plot is probably one of the best things about this book. even though jason transitions between stages of his life suddenly, the events aren’t boring at all, which allowed me to keep reading. it held my attention well enough, but the ending feels very rushed.
finally, the writing is definitely my least favorite part. like the dialogue, it feels very awkward to me. the plot somewhat redeems the writing for me, but i can’t tell if the writing is this way because of jason’s character or not.
overall, i did not particularly enjoy emotions, but if you like sci-fi, you might want to give it a try.
have you read this? what did you think?