Genera(s): Sci-fi Thriller/Romance
Subjects: aliens, games, adventure, action
Setting: Modern day Rochester, New York and various other places
POV/Tense: 1st person POV, present tense: Miki Jones
Age/Grade Level: Teen
Length: 361 pgs.
HC/PB: Hardcover and now in Paperback
List Price: $17.99/$9.99
Publisher: HarperTeen: Katherine Tegan
Summary/ product description: “So what’s the game now? This, or the life I used to know?
When Miki Jones is pulled from her life, pulled through time and space into some kind of game—her carefully controlled life spirals into chaos. In the game, she and a team of other teens are sent on missions to eliminate the Drau, terrifying and beautiful alien creatures. There are no practice runs, no training, and no way out. Miki has only the guidance of secretive but maddeningly attractive team leader Jackson Tate, who says the game isn’t really a game, that what Miki and her new teammates do now determines their survival, and the survival of every other person on this planet. She laughs. He doesn’t. And then the game takes a deadly and terrifying turn.”
My Review: There needs to be more books as cool, awesome and unique as this one. Rush was everything I could ask for and more. When the game was first introduced in the book, I wasn’t sure what to think of it. It seemed too strange, but then you find out more about the aliens and the sci-fi stuff. Things get really interesting. And then there’s Jackson. The hot, sunglasses wearing love interest of the story.
The narration is well done. Miki’s voice and unique personality in not like any of the Mary Sue’s out there. Miki is part Japanese and has strange indigo-blue eyes. She’s into kendo and manga and like being in control of her life, so she eats healthy and likes to run. He mom died of lung cancer; her dad has a drinking problem. She’s ends up in the game after she tries to save a little girl from a car, and ends up injuring herself to near-death. Luka, a guy from school, gets hit too trying to save her.
The game has rules like a video game, but it’s all for real. The aliens they battle are real. The stakes are real. If you health bar turns completely red, you die in the game and the real world. The aliens are the Drau (not sure how to pronounce their name). They’re pale and white with mercury silver eyes and can suck the life force out of people when they look them in the eyes. They don’t like the dark because the planet they’re from was always sunny. These aliens seem more unique than the stereotypical grays, reptilian, or insect-like aliens. The aliens do not come in peace. They want to take over the world.
I was happy to find a really good romance in this book. It’s not the central focus, but I love how it develops. Jackson seems like a jerk at first. It’s secretive and always wears sunglasses that hide his eyes. Miki manages to fall for him without ever seeing his eyes. It was not insta-love. Jackson was cocky and told her half-truths and didn’t smile very much. Miki made him smile, though. Jackson reminds me of Jace from the Mortal Instruments series.
I recommend this book if you enjoyed Insignia by S.J. Kincaid, Unraveling by Elizabeth Norris, or books with aliens, like The 5th Wave by Rick Yancy. If you play video games or love watching alien invasion movies. I really am happy I finally read this book. The sequel, Push, comes out on June 10th.
Cover Art Review: I loved this cover since I first set eyes on it. I love the color and the letters that look 3-D and neon bright. I love that it’s metallic.