Sep 2, 2014

Blackbird by @AnnaCareyBooks Review

Blackbird by Anna Carey
(Blackbird Duology #1)
Release Date: September 16, 2014
Publisher: HarperTeen; 256 pages
This twisty, breathless cat-and-mouse thrill ride, told in the second person, follows a girl with amnesia in present-day Los Angeles who is being pursued by mysterious and terrifying assailants.

A girl wakes up on the train tracks, a subway car barreling down on her. With only minutes to react, she hunches down and the train speeds over her. She doesn’t remember her name, where she is, or how she got there. She has a tattoo on the inside of her right wrist of a blackbird inside a box, letters and numbers printed just below: FNV02198. There is only one thing she knows for sure: people are trying to kill her.

On the run for her life, she tries to untangle who she is and what happened to the girl she used to be. Nothing and no one are what they appear to be. But the truth is more disturbing than she ever imagined.

The Maze Runner series meets Code Name Verity, Blackbird is relentless and action-packed, filled with surprising twists.

When I first heard the premise of Blackbird, I was eager to have this book in my hands.  A young adult book told from second person narrative immediately had me intrigued.  I remember reading the choose your own adventure books as a child, and I absolutely loved those.  It was a way to use your imagination to physically put yourself in the story.  I had never read or heard of a young adult book told in second person point of view, so at BEA earlier this year, I made it my mission to pick up this book.

Blackbird is told like how any mystery novel should be told, in a fast pace.  From the very first page there is action.  And it really never slows down.  It's a very quick read.  Seriously kudos to Anna Carey, because it must have been difficult to write the majority of a novel in second person point of view.  And the way in which she describes Los Angeles is very accurate.  I have only been to LA a few times, but I found myself have a perfect visual of the landscape.

While I did find Blackbird to be enjoyable, I did have a few issues.  The first is, I didn't really get the vibe that it was told from the reader's point of view.  I would have liked more thoughts and emotions from the lead.  Now it could have been because I am nearly thirty, and the main character is a teenager.  But I still felt like I was reading someone else's story.  And I know I said that the book has a quick pace, but I honestly think it reads a little bit too fast.  I know that this is a duology and I will be reading it's sequel, but maybe it would benefit more at being a standalone.


  1. Nice review. I find I have a difficult time with emotionally connecting to the main character in second person POV books. Don't get me wrong, when it's done well it can be phenomenal, but for me there's not really much middle-ground. Sounds interesting though!

  2. I had quite a bit of the same thoughts. It was really hard to feel I was the main character like it was intended. I just felt a little disconjointed for me. I do wish we had learned more too. It felt a bit dragged out for being a fast paced book. I will say I will read the next book because I do want to find out what happened. So that plan worked. Great review.


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