Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Review: Pivot Point by Kasie West

Pivot Point
Kasie West
Series: Pivot Point, #1
Genre: YA Paranormal
Publication date: February 12th 2013
by HarperTeen

Knowing the outcome doesn’t always make a choice easier . . .

Addison Coleman’s life is one big “What if?” As a Searcher, whenever Addie is faced with a choice, she can look into the future and see both outcomes. It’s the ultimate insurance plan against disaster. Or so she thought. When Addie’s parents ambush her with the news of their divorce, she has to pick who she wants to live with—her father, who is leaving the paranormal compound to live among the “Norms,” or her mother, who is staying in the life Addie has always known. Addie loves her life just as it is, so her answer should be easy. One Search six weeks into the future proves it’s not.

In one potential future, Addie is adjusting to life outside the Compound as the new girl in a Norm high school where she meets Trevor, a cute, sensitive artist who understands her. In the other path, Addie is being pursued by the hottest guy in school—but she never wanted to be a quarterback’s girlfriend. When Addie’s father is asked to consult on a murder in the Compound, she’s unwittingly drawn into a dangerous game that threatens everything she holds dear. With love and loss in both lives, it all comes down to which reality she’s willing to live through . . . and who she can’t live without.
*A copy was provided by HarperCollins Canada for review*
para·nor·mal: adj. not scientifically explainable : supernatural

Meet Addison, or preferably Addie; Clairvoyant Divergent. Addie has the unique and thought-provoking ability of being able to see both sides of the coin. In other words, when she has a decision to make, she can see the future of each choice and pick the one that's best. Fascinating, no? But what happens when you don't want either future you foresee? This plot revolves around Addie's venture into two futures after she was asked to pick between staying in the paranormal compound, or going with her dad in the normal world.

Told in dual reality perspective, reality one keeps us in the compound where life with abilities is the norm. From telekinesis to lie detectors, living with knowing someone may currently be manipulating your mood is the way of life for these people. Stories where characters have superhuman abilities have often been favourites of mine. We all wished, at one point or other, that we were able to move things with our mind, or know what another person is thinking, so this reality had me hooked from the start. Learning what everyone could do, as well as their advanced technology promised limitless entertainment. This future has a less than likeable love interest, however. If this was a triangle, he would have been the bad boy. His personality clashes with Addie's and I never trusted him for a minute. This is how he was meant to come off, though, so I am not saying this with negativity. It has a purpose in the story and it is not for us to fall for a jerk--Phew! This reality also involves a creep with a menacing ability who we learn early on is bad news, giving the story a bit of a dangerous vibe.

nor·mal: adj. conforming to a type, standard, or regular pattern

Reality two takes us to the normal world where Addie has to learn our present ways of life which lacks the technology that she is used to in her compound. She also becomes the new kid at the Norm school. This was my personal favourite reality. I love seeing how someone adapts to a new surrounding, including who they meet and connect with. Plus the love interest in this future is a definite sweetheart. They start out as friends, and her intention of never becoming more than consequently makes us long for them even more, not to mention magnifying their chemistry. They have an easy way about them that makes their relationship completely down to earth and genuine. This reality also involves the football team trying to figure out the mystery behind these seeming unrandom injuries that have been incurred by their teammates.

Screwed: adj. Having to choose a bad path to avoid a worst one
-Quoted from the uncorrected proof

The gist of the story: What side do you choose, when you want neither?

In the end, Addie has to make a very difficult choice of what she came to understand is deciding which is the lesser evil. This gives the ending an emotionally gripping edge. However, I did have a small qualm with the logic behind the decision. Knowing your future, wouldn't you be able to change it? Perhaps no matter what she does the end result will be the same, but one must follow the logic that if every choice creates two alternate futures, then no future is definite; she could modify additional choices along the way which should, in turn, modify how each future culminates. With this said, I'm not sure I completely agree with the decision that she eventually makes. With such an intricate concept, it seems a little simplistic that it has to be definite A, or definite B. This is why playing with time in any way is tricky with over-analyzing minds such as mine!

No doubt a unique read, Pivot Point encompasses a lot of plot characteristics that turns this could-be cliché into an enticing novel. With two stories in one, there is no time to get bored. These two alternatives each have a love interest, each have interesting secondary characters, each with different dilemmas and mysteries of their own. What makes it even more interesting is that, as one reality happens, the events of the other still come about, but without Addie in its direct path. I found this gave it a very neat spin as, even tough we get two different reality perspectives, they're intertwined together to give us one complete story.

With plenty of romance, friendship, and paranormal abilities, Pivot Point is a refreshingly original read that is sure to delight any fan of the genre.

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