Tuesday 8 January 2013

Review -- The Lost Code by Kevin Emerson

The Lost Code (The Atlanteans, #1)Title: The Lost Code
Author: Kevin Emerson
Series: The Atlanteans (1)
Publisher: Katherine Tegen
Release Date: 22 May 2012
Date Read: Dec 2012

In the year 2086, Camp Eden promises summer “the way things used to be,” back before the oceans rose, the sun became a daily enemy, and modern civilization sank into chaos. Located inside the EdenWest BioDome, the camp is an oasis of pine trees, cool water, and rustic charm.

But all at Camp Eden is not what it seems.
No one will know this better than 15-year-old Owen Parker. A strange underwater vision, even stranger wounds on Owen’s neck, and a cryptic warning from the enchanting lifeguard Lilly hint at a mystery that will take Owen deep beneath Lake Eden and even deeper into the past. What he discovers could give him the chance to save the tattered planet. But first, Owen will have to escape Camp Eden alive…
(from Goodreads)

This is a mess.

I've always thought it was harder to write reviews for Great books than for Bad ones but The Lost Code is the closest book to prove that assumption wrong. I don't even know where to start.

Ok. Fine. Let's just get this over with.

There are no likeable characters. They are all boring and annoying and I want to punch each and every one of them in the face for existing. The most annoying of them all is Owen, the main character, our narrator. I don't know how old he's supposed to be but judging from the cover, he's 16. He certainly didn't act like one though. He thought, acted and spoke like he was 11. The first scene is him drowning because he decided to swim even though he had some illness that would lead to his drowning. Why? Because he wanted to impress the camp councilor, Lilly. He's decided he was in love with her after staring at her from afar. Oh my God, stop the torture. Here I thought teenage girls YA has got now were bad. Owen is on the run for being more annoying than your average lovesick, angst-filled teenage girl. For the rest of the book, Owen is just pining for Lilly, nursing his crush while whining about how she's never going to notice him. I don't know what he sees in Lilly. She had no remarkable feats and about as interesting as lint. Their romance was one of the cringiest that has ever existed. The rest of the cast were the camp kids and councilors. I don't even remember their names though. The camp director was a creep. The bully was pathetic. I didn't even hate him because I just felt bad for him for having to say those pathetic taunts Emerson fed him. Then there was this one guy who spoke this:
"Dude, that's aMAZing! They HATE you!"
I wish I was kidding. I copied that letter by letter.

The worst thing about this book is the world building.

None of it made sense. It was very scattered and Emerson kept throwing things at me, at the randomest places and I'm trying to catch it but I don't know know what to do with the information he just gave me. It certainly didn't make things clearer. There was way too many natural disasters that there was no way they happened naturally. The ozone layer was in pieces. Three quarters of the land mass has flooded. Yellowstone got it the worst, apparently. Everyone needs to wear sunscreen. There was a three-year fire. Oh and people burned their own houses and stuff so that when the fire finally reached the area, there would be nothing left to burn and the fire would eventually die out. Sure, that's cool. Except now no one has a place to live. Hmmm... What other horrendous ploy for world building did Emerson attempt? Right, there are five or six (can't remember) massive domes where rich people live and send their kids to. It's supposed to be the best protection humans have to offer against the wrath of Mother Nature. These domes are used as a summer camp. Yup. The government chooses to spend what little money they have left to entertain rich people's children. Everything is man-made and they've tried to replicate the place to closely resemble what life used to be like. Seems like just a big fat waste of money to me. Also when Mother Nature first started her campaign to burn us all, rich people could get themselves frozen until humans have rebuilt society and they can get thawed back out. I'm pretty sure Owen used to live in a cave society or something. He called it the Hub and he kept saying that people aren't allowed to the surface and that he hasn't seen rain. I just assumed he lives in a cave. How does that work if the whole damn place is flooded? It's supposed to be 2086 but Owen will say something that will make me think that's it's like 100 years in the future.

I don't even know if it would be fair to say that I thought this book had potential. I'm sure I thought so during the first 20 pages or something but i don't even know if this can be salvaged. The heart of the story was just lost, utterly lost. There is no way I'm reading the next one. If you haven't read this book, good for you. If you haven't even heard of this book before, then I apologize for bringing your attention to this monstrosity. I'll leave you with the funniest quote in the book:
"Xane's parents, and most of the Taiwanese, had emigrated to Coke-Sahel, which was formed when the Coca-Cola complany merged with Walmart and then purchased twelve West African countries."

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