Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
July 15, 2014
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The X-Men meets Ocean's Eleven in this edge-of-your-seat sci-fi adventure about a band of "super" criminals.
When the MK virus swept across the planet, a vaccine was created to stop the epidemic, but it came with some unexpected side effects. A small percentage of the population developed superhero-like powers. Seventeen-year-old Ciere Giba has the handy ability to change her appearance at will. She's what's known as an illusionist...She's also a thief.
After a robbery goes awry, Ciere must team up with a group of fellow super-powered criminals on another job that most would consider too reckless. The formula for the vaccine that gave them their abilities was supposedly destroyed years ago. But what if it wasn't?
The lines between good and bad, us and them, and freedom and entrapment are blurred as Ciere and the rest of her crew become embroiled in a deadly race against the government that could cost them their lives.
A bit like if Ally Carter's The Heist Society were to be bitten by a radioactive spider, Emily Lloyd-Jones' debut is an incredible read. (Though, in Illusive, it's a vaccine that provides the 'superhero'-like abilities, not an arachnid.)
Illusive is really well imagined. Everything from the characters and their lives to why their powers came about and what that's meant for society, is just great.
Seventeen-year-old Ciere Giba is an illusionist - and a thief. It's fun and she thinks she has all of her bases covered. Until, that is, something she doesn't expect happens. Now, as she works with other criminals, others with powers, she will have to find a way to save herself. Without risking anyone else.
Ciere is a really enjoyable main character. She is an illusionist and a thief, yes, but she's also a seventeen-year-old girl. The way she's grown up, her family life, is not what would be called 'normal.' But she has a life that works for her. When something threatens all of that, we see more of who Ciere really is. With glimpses into her past, we can better understand her and her motivation while the decisions she makes, the things she struggles with in the present, make her feel real.
I am hoping for more from the other characters in the next book(s). I really enjoyed them in Illusive but they weren't quite as developed as I wanted. Enough was hinted at, though, that I know they do have great stories.
This was one book that I hated to see end. I like how it ended, don't get me wrong, but I could easily have kept on reading more about the characters, their exploits, their tribulations and how they plan to work through it all. (When that's true about a 400-plus page book, that's something.)
I really cannot wait to see where Deceptive (Illusion #2) takes things - and hope most of the characters come back for another tale.
- It's Lindsay Cumming's review that made me decide to read this, so 'yay' to her :)
Other books you might also enjoy: The Heist Society series by Ally Carter and the Curse Workers series by Holly Black
thank you to LBYR for the ability to read this, via NetGalley, for an honest review