Sunday, 24 November 2013

Revolution 19 by Gregg Rosenblum

Title: Revolution 19
Author: Gregg Rosenblum
Published by: HarperCollins 360
Publication date: 30th January 2014
Pages: 265
Genres: Young Adult/Sci-fi/Dystopian
Format: Hardback
Source: Review copy from the publisher.

At first we called it system-wide malfunctions when the robots stopped fighting at exactly 2:15pm Greenwich Mean Time, August 17, 2051. For twenty-two hours the battlefields were silent. Then when the bots began killing again, now targeting their human commanders, we shook our heads and called it fatal programming errors. A day later, the skies over cities on six continents grew dark with warships, and we began to understand. When the bombs rained down and then legions of bot foot soldiers marched into the burning ruins, killing any humans who resisted and dragging away the rest of us, we finally called it what it was; revolution. 

Revolution 19 revolves around three siblings - Nick, Cass and Kevin - who live in a small settlement in the middle of nowhere. Life is good; ordinary. Little do they know that a mysterious black device Kevin picked up is going to alert robots to their whereabouts and their settlement will be under attack in a matter of hours. The bots capture their parents and the siblings decide to fight to set them free, but will they manage it? And how much trouble will they get in to along the way?

Rosenblum's writing very much reminds me of The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness in the way that you are dragged into the story without much explanation of things, like: What is a Freepost? What is a Kidbon? These are both things that feature in the story and I'm still not entirely clear on what they are. They're obviously part of the world building but what actually are they? This doesn't effect the quality of the story too much, but I think it would be better with annotations or a glossary.

There was only just enough world building to keep me interested. Instead of going into a lot of detail with the descriptions the writer seemed to concentrate more on other things, like finishing the story. That's not to say the story was too fast-paced because it wasn't, it was just right. But maybe if the writer had spent more time setting the scene the book would have stayed with me after the last page was turned.

The characters didn't develop at all. Sure they were likeable, but if you asked me what each of their personalities were I wouldn't have a clue. I know their names and I know their ages. I know Nick likes to be the hero and....well, that's it. When they got into tricky situations I didn't feel nervous for them and I didn't particularly care if they lived or died. Also, what's with naming two of the main characters after the Jonas Brothers?...

There was a very subtle hint at romance but nothing actually happened. This would usually disappoint me but I think it benefited the story because the focus was more on survival and defeating the bots instead of crappy love triangles. Revolution 19 was very well thought out, plot wise - it was interesting, unique and plausible. I liked how it was set in our world but in the future and it had been taken over by robots. I mean, that could happen...I know in 2006 I was thinking we would have flying cars and other cool stuff in 2013! ;)

This review has been very hard to write because to be honest I don't remember much of it even though I finished it last night. It isn't a story that stays with you after the last page and it doesn't require much thinking either. Even though it's a really unique and enjoyable book it just didn't stand out for me amongst other books that I've read! Saying that, I would like a sequel because the characters - as undeveloped as they were - and the world and the robots interested me and I think a sequel could be better than this. Fingers crossed!

I have mixed feelings about this book as you can probably tell. I did enjoy it but unfortunately it lacked a lot. It's well worth checking out, anyway!


  1. I saw this in your TMI Tag video and thought it looked really interesting! Shame about the lack of character development, though; I cannot read a book if it's like that so I might give this one a miss. However, it does sound really intriguing as a concept!! :)

  2. The premise of this is certainly interesting so it's a shame you found it a bit lacking and not exactly memorable, but at least you still enjoyed it. Great review ;)

  3. The cover looks very intriguing. And the synopsis is very interesting! I can't wait to read it! :-) Brilliant review, Amber!