Review: Reboot (Reboot #1) by Amy Tintera

Five years ago, Wren Connolly was shot three times in the chest. After 178 minutes she came back as a Reboot: stronger, faster, able to heal, and less emotional. The longer Reboots are dead, the less human they are when they return. Wren 178 is the deadliest Reboot in the Republic of Texas. Now seventeen years old, she serves as a soldier for HARC (Human Advancement and Repopulation Corporation).

Wren’s favorite part of the job is training new Reboots, but her latest newbie is the worst she’s ever seen. As a 22, Callum Reyes is practically human. His reflexes are too slow, he’s always asking questions, and his ever-present smile is freaking her out. Yet there’s something about him she can’t ignore. When Callum refuses to follow an order, Wren is given one last chance to get him in line—or she’ll have to eliminate him. Wren has never disobeyed before and knows if she does, she’ll be eliminated, too. But she has also never felt as alive as she does around Callum.

The perfect soldier is done taking orders.

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Apparently something has happened about ten years ago, which resulted in cities getting destroyed, a lot of people dying and some of them waking up again. If it isn't clear, don't worry I don't get it fully either. It could use a bit more explaining for my part.

Somehow waking up again after dying means you've turned into some kind of superhuman. The longer you were dead, the stronger and less human you are. So Wren is actually an exception, because the highest number that comes after her is somewhere around 150. Now since she has become a Reboot at age twelve, she has been working for HARC. This mostly means arresting/killing people, killing adult Reboots (they always turn into crazy violent beings) and training other Reboots.

All was fair and well in her little cocoon, until one day twenty-two a.k.a. Callum stepped into her life. His number is pretty much the lowest out there. See where this is going; his is lowest, her is highest, opposites attract and all that. At least that is the case for Callum. He's been doing crazy things like smiling at Wren and talking to her like she's a regular human, he even dares challenging her. Since Wren is like five circuits away from being a human robot, she does not know how to deal with someone like Callum, but strangely she's intrigued.

Now it's up to her to train him, which would go a lot better if he would ever shut up and keep from getting into trouble. When Wren gets the order to eliminate him, it's the first time she doubts her orders. She will have to make a choice; kill him and stay in her little cocoon or escape and give in to these new and strange things you call emotions.

Reboot is very nicely written and well paced. A fun science fiction story, light on the heavy drama and a sweet first love. Still I feel it could very well be suited for the middle grade age category, considering the emotional level of the two main characters. Callum is so naive and a bit too Mr. Sunshine to be taken serious. While Wren is also very naive, but with her I'm talking about boys, love and emotions. On the one hand she's supposed to be this killing machine, but then this guy walks in, says pretty much two words to her and suddenly she's completely changing. The character development, mostly the emotional and personality part, I find it lacking.

Overall I liked the story. It's a fun read for in-between, but I don't think I will be reading the sequel.

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