Author: Brendan Reichs
Series: Project Nemesis, #1
Publisher: Macmillan Children’s Books
Release Date: July 13th 2017
It’s been happening since Min was eight. Every two years, on her birthday, the same man finds her and murders her in cold blood. But hours later she wakes up in a clearing just outside her hometown – alone, unhurt, and with all evidence of the crime erased.
Across the valley, Noah just wants to be like everyone else. But he’s not. Nightmares of murder and death plague him too, though he does his best to hide the signs.
And as the world around them begins to spiral towards panic and destruction, the two troubled teens discover that people have been lying to them their whole lives…
A YA summer blockbuster thriller for fans of The Maze Runner and The 100.
– Blurb courtesy of goodreads.com
I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
My Thoughts On…
The blurb for this book has me hooked right away. Ever since she was eight, every other year on her birthday, Min has been tracked down by the same strange man and killed over and over, only to wake up again in a clearing in the woods with no injuries and no evidence of anything having ever happened to her. There is nothing Min can do to escape, nothing seems to work against this murderer who without fail kills her.
While her home town, and the whole planet, is facing annihilation from a comet that seems set on a trajectory that will lead it to crash into the Earth Min has other things on her mind. After all why should the end of the world matter when her world ends every two years? Determined to prove she’s not insane, not imagining this strange man, Min needs to find evidence of his existence or evidence of her deaths. However what she finds instead is deeper than she could have imagined, and it includes Noah.
Noah has been living with horrible nightmares, full of death and murder, every two years on his birthday. He hides everything about them, keeping his head down and hoping against all else that someone has an answer to the dreams that plague him and why, no matter what he does, he keeps on suffering through them. The comet that could or couldn’t hit Earth is only the beginning, and soon Noah and Min become entwined in a conspiracy that affects their whole town.
I loved the concept for this book, and the more I read the more intrigued I was about what was happening to Noah and Min, and what was happening to their town as well. There was no one either could trust, and the more answers they tried to find the more questions they ended up with. However this book almost feels like two individual stories. The first half of Nemesis is slow to develop, dropping clues and letting Min and Noah chase after them, while the second half seemed to go in a completely different direction, and while answers are forthcoming I was confused and left with my own questions as Noah’s and Min’s were finally answered.
Min may be murdered every two years but she is still a survivor. Despite having never succeeded before she wants to defeat her murderer, wants to leave a mark on him, wants to survive the day despite the fact she always ends up coming back. Min takes what is happening to her – the fear, desperation, confusion – and uses it to further her goals. After all, she dies all the time, so what is the worst that can happen to her now.
Noah is the exact opposite of Min. After being plagued with nightmares of death and murder, for years he just wants to bury his head in the sand until everything is better again. He thinks there is something wrong with him and all he wants is to be fixed. While Min chases after whatever answers she can find Noah is more hesitant, scared of what he could discover if he digs too deep and only wanting to move forwards if he’s sure he’s chasing the right answers.
I really enjoyed the dynamic between Noah and Min. It was interesting how what they had both been going through had shaped them both in different ways. While Noah opened up to people in the hopes that they could help him through what was happening to him Min closed herself off from everyone, to used to people doubting her word and making her feel crazy.
What I didn’t enjoy was the love triangle developed in this book. I enjoyed the dynamic between Min and Noah, the relationship Min had with her best friend Tack, and even the snarky, jealous, back-and-forth between Noah and Tack, but the love triangle introduced felt a little forced. I’ve never been a fan of love triangles but with everything else going on in this book, all the revelations that were happening, this one felt like a little too much when we could have had some more page time dedicated to individual character development.
For a debut novel in a new series Nemesis does an incredible job of setting up the situation our characters face and the world they live in. The development all the characters go through was incredible, especially when it comes to Noah, and the ending had me on the edge of my seat. After a somewhat rocky start in places I feel like the second book in the Project Nemesis series promises to be unforgettable.
What did you think of Nemesis? Was it a favourite of yours or could you just not get into the story? Let me know.
All quotes have been taken from an ARC and may differ in the final publication.