Title: Pivot Point
Author: Kasie West
Genre: thriller/sci-fi/paranormal/contemporary elements
Length: 343 pages
Published by: HarperTeen
Source: received for my birthday (thank you, O Sister of Mine)
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.
Who do I think of when you say “look into the future,” you ask?
Much to my disappointment, there were no Grims in this book. However, there were plenty of other awesome things that made up for it.
Basically, when Addie is faced with a choice, she can Search the future to see what will happen and choose the option that is best. When she Searches, the option she doesn’t pick still feels like it’s real. Which is a major drawback. When Addie’s parents get divorced, she has to choose which parent to stay with. The book alternates between two POVs – one where she’s with her mum in the paranormal world, and one with her dad in the “normal” world.
I really really liked this book and how it was told.
In another writer’s hands, this could have been dreadfully confusing. But a few things helped with switching back and forth between the two Searches.
1) At the top of each chapter is a definition, with either PARA or NORM in the word. “Para” is the world where people have cool abilities, and “Norm” is the boring human world. So that helps. It also took me an embarrassingly long time to realise.
2) Kasie West is such an amazing writer that I was never confused about what was going on.
The main reason I picked up this book is because of Kasie West, because I LOVED The Distance Between Us and On the Fence. Well, also because my sister would only buy books that she wanted to read as well. Luckily this was on the list. The last reason, though, was that the premise was amazing. I love the idea of the future and how it changes with each decision you make.
For example, if Past Emily had read that book for English like she was supposed to, Present Emily wouldn’t be frantically trying to skim it before going back to school.
I really liked how, through each different perspective, you got to figure out things from the OTHER perspective – how the mystery was laced through both parts of the story. That was really really clever, I thought.
Laila, Addie’s best friend, was completely hilarious and I loved her. Trevor, one of the love interests, was also really funny and witty (no surprise I’m team Trevor). Addie herself is easy to like – she knows how to make her own decisions and also she likes books.
(seriously, if you need gifs for reviews Harry Potter has you covered)
This was such an interesting concept to explore – there’s a lot of scope there, and I look forward to seeing how the story develops in Split Second. The ending of this, of seeing which option Addie has to choose…oh my goodness, I could not look away for a second. In a way this would be an awful ability to have – imagine having to choose between two horrible futures? Or even two really amazing ones, really.
The writing is easy to read and flows well. It’s got that contemporary style as well as incorporating supernatural/paranormal elements – that sort of genre mash-up is something I really like.
Now I’ll have to go and search out some other alternate-reality books, because I LOVED this one! Split Second isn’t out in paperback yet, I don’t think, but when it is I can’t wait to read it.