Monday, March 25, 2013

Stung ~ Bethany Wiggins (earc) review

Walker Children's
April 2, 2013
304 pages
add to Goodreads/buy from Book Depo/or Amazon

There is no cure for being stung.

Fiona doesn’t remember going to sleep. But when she opens her eyes, she discovers her entire world has been altered—her house is abandoned and broken, and the entire neighborhood is barren and dead. Even stranger is the tattoo on her right hand—a black oval with five marks on either side—that she doesn’t remember getting but somehow knows she must cover at any cost. She’s right. [partial synopsis from Goodreads]

Fiona's whole world is different -- even the body she finds herself in, while still her own, seems older. Outside everything is more dangerous, almost lifeless and certainly not as she remembered.

Can she find out what the tattoo on her hand means, what's happened to the world and stay alive?

Stung incorporates something that's part of our world to a lesser extent (at least now) but has, as far as I know, not yet been part of a novel: the death of bees. Fiona's sister was worried about the bees being on the endangered species list and talks of all that they can effect.

While having a secure city behind a wall while the underprivileged live in a dystopian, crumbling world outside of it isn't particularly anything new, the way Wiggins approaches it is. How the city inside the wall is run is different and even why it's there. The 'why' those individuals need protecting is quite interesting and unique.

It makes Fiona's story -- and that of the other main character -- a very compelling read. Discovering their stories, both past and present while they work together, and sometimes against each other, pulls you in. It's what the future may or may not hold for them that keeps a bit of suspense in the mix.

The beginning of Stung is quite interesting. When Fiona wakes up with no memory of being the age she is or the world being as it is, the readers have no knowledge of why things are as they are, either. It takes more than a quarter of the novel (or reading some synopses) to find certain things out. Sometimes it's fun to have a leg up on the main character but here, while at times a bit frustrating, it was nice being on the same level as Fiona knowledge wise.

Fiona and her counterpart work well together and in addition to bringing out parts of their past -- the memory-slash-flashbacks were a great addition - it brings out different elements of their personalities.

Stung was different than I was expecting -- with the addition another character and the city along with what it housed -- and I liked it more than I expected.

Rating: 8/10

If you liked this book, you might also enjoy: Article 5 by Kristen Simmons and Black City by Elizabeth Richards

thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for my egalley


  1. Thank you! Wonderful review. I'm glad you liked it more that you thought you would!

  2. I just started this last night and the first chapter was amazing. I'm interested to find out more about the characters and what's going on with the society! Gret review!

    Jesse @ Pretty In Fiction


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