Fear Me Not
Author: Sara Wolf
Release Date: 20 June 2014
The aliens crash-landed on Earth eleven years ago. And now, sixteen-year-old Victoria Hale feeds them. With her emotions.
Victoria is an EVE - an Emotion Vesicle Engraft - and one of few humans who are genetically capable of producing emotions for the Gutters to feed on. She's doing it for the money - her sister Alisa needs a good doctor, and fast. But what she didn't count on was being sent to the world's first desegregated high school for Gutters and humans. She didn't count on the paparazzi, the protestors, or the insane Gutter politics and government secrets. She didn't count on the crimson-eyed Gutter prince with an intriguing heart of cold iron, either.
She especially didn't count on murder.
But it's counting on her.
“I’m sorry,” Shadus’ voice says.
My eyes slide over – Shadus is standing right next to me, leaning on the bookshelf. I close my eyes and sigh.
“Don’t be. It’s me. Something’s wrong with me. I don’t know how to react like a normal person. Jeers, whispers, sneers, those are fine. I ignore them, punch something to make them hurt less. Compliments? I don’t know what to do with those.”
“You’re different. That’s not necessarily bad,” He offers. His long fingers skim over a row of books and he picks one out, flipping through the pages. “More literature in which the protagonist kisses his interest. Is it all your human writers are interested in? It hardly seems worthy enough to devote entire books to.”
“It’s not so bad,” I defend. “Kissing.”
“You speak from experience?” He asks.
“Second grade during the school play. Arnold Grady. We were backstage, behind the curtain. I thought it was a good time to go for it.”
“It was enjoyable, then?”
“Too wet.” I laugh, the memory burning like an old tattoo of embarrassment. “He was shorter than me - all the boys were. They’ve only started catching up this year, really.”
I raise an eyebrow. “What? Of the short boys?”
“Of your kiss. You speak of it fondly. Even if it was lacking technique, you still remember it. It must have been an important experience. I assume I will never know that sort of feeling - ”
I step into him. He jolts back, hitting the bookshelf. It shakes, and settles. I point up at him.
“Be thankful. You guys have the ceremony of flame. You don’t waste time with petty shit and he-likes-her-she-likes-him crap. Your future is arranged by your family. But us? Humans? We fish around blindly in a pool of seven billion people, hoping one of them isn’t too crazy or too incompatible with us, and we get so desperate that when we find someone we can stand for two minutes we decide to marry them for life, when in reality they’re all wrong for us. But we keep pretending they’re right, until we can’t anymore, and then we divorce them or break up and we get up and try again, and again, and it chips away at our tiny human hearts.”
He stares at me intently, as if I’m lecturing him and he’s trying his hardest to learn something from it. I snort.
“You’re lucky, Creeps. All you Gutters are lucky.”
“What you call ‘lucky’, I call ‘boring’,” Shadus says. “The human way of things may be more painful, but it sounds much more fun.”
I stride up to him, get in his face. His chest is rising and falling, his fists balled up. His ruby eyes stare down at me.
“Don’t do it,” He murmurs.
“Do what?” I singsong.
He struggles with something inside himself, a pained look coming over his expression.
I press my head into the cradle where his neck meets his shoulder.
I'm not usually a fan of sci-fi romances, but I am a fan of Sara Wolf so I figured this would still be a good choice. I was so right.
Victoria, aka Vic, has not had an easy lot in life. Her mother was killed in a stampede during a protest against the aliens that had crash landed on Earth. Her sister has severe asthma and her father has to work 24/7 to make ends meet. All of this has given Vic a tough exterior and a sharp, biting wit that she uses to keep most people at arm's length. A self-professed loner, she usually finds herself an outsider at school, something she's mroe than happy to have happen at her new school where aliens (gutters) and humans mix. She signs up as an EVE, an Emotion Vesicle Engraft, which basically means her emotions are used to feed the gutters. She might not be a fan of gutters, but at least the fee from being an EVE will ease her father's financial burden.
I loved the growth that Vic shows through the story. She learns a lot about the gutter culture and becomes a much more understanding person. She still retains her sarcasm and fierce demeanor, but she also shows that there is a lot of vulnerability under it all.
Shadus was a very interesting character. He's a sotho of the Executioner group, which basically means that he's like a Prince and people are constantly trying to curry his favour. He is cold and closed off, but when he and Vic are put together as culture partners at school he spends more time with her and eventually they form a rather unlikely friendship. With her help, he also learns more about humans and his guard starts to lower, bit by bit.
Shadus and Vic have very much a slow burner of a relationship. They start out very antagonistic towards each other, before it develops into an uneasy friendship. Soon enough, both of them start to feel things that are less than platonic for each other. Unfortunately these romantic developments don't really take hold until late in the book, so I'll definitely be looking forward to how their relationship develops in the next book!
I found the plot very intriguing and it had me hooked. Aspects of the gutter culture are explained throughout the book, and it's all very well explained so I never felt lost in all of this alien information. The ending has definitely left me anxiously and impatiently waiting for the next book- I really, really want to know what happens next!
Overall, it's a very interesting and thoroughly enjoyable book with an array of interesting and complex characters. I have no idea what's going to happen next, but man am I excited to find out!
*I received a review copy for my honest opinion. Thank you!
About the Author
Sara Wolf is the author of the LOVELY VICIOUS series and FEAR ME NOT, the first book in The EVE Chronicles, a YA/Sci-Fi series. She’s currently working on the final book in the LOVELY VICIOUS series. She’s addicted to the Vampire Diaries, The Walking Dead, True Detective, pink Starbursts, pizza, and damaged heroes. For additional books, news, teasers, and giveaways, visit her at sarawolfbooks.blogspot.com or facebook.com/sara.wolf.3304.
Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads
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