The author provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Transfixion was such a disappointment. I wanted so badly to like it, but it just didn’t happen. The beginning will captivate you. It’s fast-paced and action-packed so you truly believe that you can get into this book. However, awesome moments like this are followed by dry spells that have you questioning why you bothered to pick it up and whether you should keep reading. This book is for patient and persistent readers.
Protagonist: Kaylee Colton is the protagonist and heroine of the story. She is supposed to be, like heroes and heroines of other apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic stories, strong, innovative, and admirable. But she isn’t. In the first half of the story, *spoiler alert* Kaylee is plagued by psychosomatic mutism, which she recovers from in the second half of the story and causes her to become the strong character she should’ve been the whole time. *end of spoiler* Kaylee just isn’t relatable. No one can do a 180 on his/her personality that quickly. I just don’t like Kaylee.
Setting: The story is about someone taking over the broadcast system and using it to turn people into mindless creatures. When the process is eventually explained, the idea is brilliant and differs from the normal take on zombies or zombie-like behavior. But in the meantime, the world is poorly developed. Sure people are going crazy and attacking each other, but how do the characters know that it’s happening everywhere and that they, since they aren’t under the spell, are the only survivors left? It seems a little presumptuous to go from chaotic fighting to “I must be the only one left.” The story is centralized to one location, but it makes so many generalizations about the whole world. At least in Divergent, the characters went as far as the Amity farms before the government told them not to go any farther so they didn’t know there was more world to explore. Since Tranfixion doesn’t work under the same limitations I don’t see why the characters would believe they’re the last survivors and operate under that notion.
“Dupes”: “Dupes” are what the characters come to call the people who have been put under mind control. In the beginning, the dupes operate as mindless people like typical zombies. Predictably, this leads to war and chaos because they’re trying to kill people, which is supposed to make the story interesting. However, over the course of the story, the dupes begin to gain an intelligence that isn’t explained in the story and takes the story on a tangent far from where it began. This could’ve been corrected if Giambrone had revealed who controlled the dupes or how they were adapting to the fighting.
Romance: Up until the end of the story, Giambrone hadn’t included a forced romance, which was a relief from many stories that do that. However, since the whole story was being turned upon its head for no apparent reason, it became fitting that an insta-romance blossomed at the end of the story. This ruined the end of the story, which confused me to begin with, but at least it was the end so I didn’t have to deal with it much.
At the beginning of Transfixion, I thought I would’ve given it a rating of 5, but as the story progressed the rating just kept decreasing until at the end I knew I was going to give it a one. Had the romance not occurred I probably would’ve given it a 1.5, which doesn’t sound any better but is 0.5 higher than what it is now.