Firstlife by Gena Showalter
Rating: 4 stars
Tenley “Ten” Lockwood is an average seventeen-year-old girl…who has spent the past thirteen months locked inside the Prynne Asylum. The reason? Not her obsession with numbers, but her refusal to let her parents choose where she’ll live—after she dies.
There is an eternal truth most of the world has come to accept: Firstlife is merely a dress rehearsal, and real life begins after death.
In the Everlife, two realms are in power: Troika and Myriad, longtime enemies and deadly rivals. Both will do anything to recruit Ten, including sending their top Laborers to lure her to their side. Soon, Ten finds herself on the run, caught in a wild tug-of-war between the two realms who will do anything to win the right to her soul. Who can she trust? And what if the realm she’s drawn to isn’t home to the boy she’s falling for? She just has to stay alive long enough to make a decision…
This book had me hooked from the start. It’s REALLY unique, and I don’t think I’ve read anything quite like this before. The world Gena Showalter created is amazing and complex.
Your “firstlife” is merely a prequel, and it really begins after your “firstdeath”. Before you die you’re supposed to sign on with either Troika or Myriad, the two realms in which your soul will go to after your firstdeath. One is light and the other, dark, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that one is good and the other bad. In Troika, everyone is treated equal without any exceptions. It’s known for its structure and conformity. Everything is black and white, right or wrong. Myriad, on the other hand, is all about indulgence and bliss, willing to negotiate covenant terms and basically bribe you into choosing them. They believe in fate and destiny, that everything happens for a reason. The catch is, once you choose one realm, there’s no going back. You can’t switch sides after you’ve pledged yourself, even if your still alive. Tenley Lockwood, unknowingly thought to be he ultimate weapon by both sides, is unsure about which to pick and chooses to stay as an Unsigned, meaning that if she doesn’t pick before her death, she will end up in Many Ends, a place of your worst nightmares come to life. On top of that, both realms are willing to kill her just so that she doesn’t pick the other.
I can understand why she is hesitant to choose. She’s being forced to decide were she will spend the rest of her existence and can’t change herr mind once she does. I’m a pretty indecisive person, and I don’t think I be able to pick either until the very last-minute.
The character’s are intriguing , eccentric, and very well-developed. I loved Ten’s character. She was strong-willed and brave, not taking being easily persuaded or bribed. She was very determined throughout the whole story, even when the odds were stacked heavily against her. Both Archer and Killian are unique, with something different to offer. They are enemies, both trying to overcome the other and convince Ten to join their side, creating all sorts of interesting and amusing situations.(I’d like to point out there is NOT a love triangle, and that there’s more kinds of love than just romantic interest).
The plot is pretty different from your average fantasy novel, full of twists and turns. I honestly don’t know what to even compare it to, never having read anything even remotely like this. It made me laugh at times, and it made me cry at times.
Over all this was an amazing book, and I highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a good read.