Publisher: Harper Teen
Series: The Hybrid Chronicles #1
Edition: Paperback, 343 pages
Genre: Young Adult Sci-Fi Dystopian
Purchase: Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Book Depository*
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I should not exist. But I do.
Eva and Addie started out the same way as everyone else—two souls woven together in one body, taking turns controlling their movements as they learned how to walk, how to sing, how to dance. But as they grew, so did the worried whispers. Why aren’t they settling? Why isn’t one of them fading? The doctors ran tests, the neighbors shied away, and their parents begged for more time. Finally Addie was pronounced healthy and Eva was declared gone. Except, she wasn’t . . .
For the past three years, Eva has clung to the remnants of her life. Only Addie knows she’s still there, trapped inside their body. Then one day, they discover there may be a way for Eva to move again. The risks are unimaginable-hybrids are considered a threat to society, so if they are caught, Addie and Eva will be locked away with the others. And yet . . . for a chance to smile, to twirl, to speak, Eva will do anything.
What’s Left of Me is a book that capitalizes on the incredibly cool idea of having two people inhabiting one body. It revolves around Eva and Addie, two sister-souls that share the same body in a dystopian United States where after a certain age there should only be one. It’s a story about their struggle to maintain their ‘normalcy’, their relationship, and their right to live.
The writing for What’s Left of Me is really solid and I think Zhang really handles the whole idea with great precision. The world we’re introduced to is one where Hybrids exist in great numbers and are common in every country except the United States where they prefer the dominant soul to take over and the recessive soul to disappear entirely. I had some reservations about the possibility of us gaining extra souls in the future, but Kat actually explained that she considers this story to be a sort of alternate universe. So while things feel modern and true to our society outside it’s been changed and tweaked to form a new society similar but wholly different.
Addie/Eva are fantastic main characters. Addie is a bit more impulsive and brash while Eva is the only that thinks things through and can handle tough situations with logic and quick thinking. Addie is the dominant soul and thus she is in control while Eva resides in the recesses of their mind. I really love how their relationship is presented. How they still have fights and ignore each other like real siblings and how it’s a lot harder and more hurtful to put that distance between them. It’s an extremely close and extremely vulnerable relationship. I also really liked Hally/Lissa and Devon/Ryan, brothers and sisters who are also hiding their dual nature and become lifelines for Addie/Eva.
I really loved that this book wasn’t just about some messed up world with laws causing people pain but instead about two sisters trying their hardest to survive and take control of their lives. It’s about the closeness they share and the fact that someone wants to rip that away from them without so much as a second thought. I’m really excited to get to the second book, Once We Were, because I’m really hoping that it sheds some light on the rest of the world as well as who these supposed hybrid rebels are. If you’re looking for a dystopian with a twist and centers around personal relationship with some added action then I definitely recommend checking this one out.