Release Date: March 11, 2014
Publisher: Delacorte Press; 384 pages
The year is 2113. In Jenna Strong's world, ACID—the most brutal controlling police force in history—rule supreme. No throwaway comment or whispered dissent goes unnoticed—or unpunished. And it was ACID agents who locked Jenna away for life, for a horrendous crime she struggles to remember. But Jenna's violent prison time has taught her how to survive by any means necessary.
When a mysterious rebel group breaks her out, she must use her strength, speed, and skill to stay one step ahead of ACID, and try to uncover the truth about what really happened on that terrible night two years ago. They have taken her life, her freedom, and her true memories away from her. How can she reclaim anything when she doesn't know who to trust?
Strong, gritty writing, irresistible psychological suspense, and action consume the novel as Jenna struggles to survive against the all-controlling ACID. Seriously sinister stuff.
It's been a few months since I've read a dystopian novel. I took a break from the genre for a bit and started reading a lot more contemporary books. But every once in a while I like to go back to books where authors create new worlds and have a corrupt government. Acid was a great quick trip back into that genre. Even if it was filled with plenty of cliches and nothing too original for a dystopian novel. It kept me captivated from start to finish.
This standalone novel takes place in 2113, so it's about a 100 years from now. The UK's government failed and the country went into debt and poverty. So a new system was created, ACID. ACID is a harsh system that monitors and controls your every action. Including your job, where you live, and who you marry. It's rare that I read a book that doesn't take place in the US. And I've never been to London, which is where the majority of the novel takes place. One thing I really enjoyed while reading was the world building. I had a pretty clear visual of the setting, even though I've never been to London.
Acid tells the story of a teenage girl who has been in an all male prison for the last two years for murdering her parents. Honestly I was hooked from the beginning. And with a beginning like that, who wouldn't be? We are first introduced to Jenna while she's in prison. She is pretty much a kick butt character. She's strong and fierce. And after a series of events she is broken out of jail, and is on the run from ACID. This book is action packed from the beginning. There are so many twist and turns.
I think the most interesting thing about the book is that even though it's told from first person point of view, as a reader you are not only exposed to Jenna's point of view. You get small glimpses into other characters as well. I particularly really liked the ACID newspaper reports. I sort of wish that there were a few more of those in the book. Also it sort of gives the reader small spoilers because you are given info that Jenna doesn't know about. It was an interesting choice by the author to do this, and I think it worked out well.
But while ACID was enjoyable, I did find a few flaws. While my interest was always kept, there was nothing to me that really stood out to make it really amazing. And with the YA market saturated with dystopian novels, it takes a lot to really have one that stands out. But considering that this was the author's debut novel, I did find it to be a good read.