Saturday, 8 July 2017

Review of Truth (The Geneva Project book 1) by Christina Benjamin

As part of this weeks author spotlight I dove into the world of the Geneva Project, book one is Truth and here's what I thought! Hullabee Island, home to the orphans of the great flood.  The children are Janes or Johns and are differentiated only by their number.  Their days are spent either learning or toiling, scouring the remains of the flood for items of value for the people of Lux, the city unblemished by the disaster.  Each day hoping to be adopted into a better life.   Our story is about Jane #65, only a baby when the flood came, she has grown up on the island under the “care” of the Grifts from the Troian Centre.  As with any teenager she has friends and enemy’s, but one day her anger gets the better of her and something unexpected happens, something that will change everything.

It’s clear that Jane #65 is special, but not alone.  As more of her fellow orphans come forward, the more the adventure grows.  There is a story, a prophecy, which just may be about to come true.

This is such a great story and I found myself pulled completely into world of the orphans and the exciting adventure that Jane #65 and her friends find themselves in.  It’s a story which is completely mapped out with it’s own mythology and it all blends seamlessly together, I loved the retelling of how the flood came to be.  The children are all great characters, all bringing a special something to the mix, especially those who are completely unaware that they are anything other than a normal child.  The Grifts are truly terrifying at times, the headmistress Greeley - reminded me so much of Miss Trunchball from Matilda, especially with the ominous Locker that the children are sent to when they misbehave.

The story does jump in appropriate age range a bit, it started off a very YA story, our protagonist is 12 years old, but grouped with the 13 year olds as she is the only one.  I really loved this as it was refreshing to have such an innocent story that was just focused on #65’s discoveries.  But it then became something slightly more .  Given #65’s age, I found that some of the thoughts and feelings she was having as the story went on were too mature, especially as the object of her thoughts is an older boy. I realise i am no longer a teenage girl, but it made me uncomfortable at times reading it and I do wonder if it really added anything to the story as it would have worked just as well without this element.  However, as the story went on I found myself forgetting about their young years and read them as the age I felt appropriate for what was happening.   

I really did enjoy reading this, I downloaded the box set on KU so have more in the story to move on to!   It is for the most part an exciting story that has tons going on with past, present and future.  Jane #65 is a great character to follow through her emotional and spiritual awakening and the ending is sublime!  This is a perfect read for around the 14 year old age range.

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