Author: Jennifer Rush
Length: 336 pages
Publisher: Little Brown & Co.
Rating: 5 stars
They were made to forget. But they'll never forgive.
Everything about Anna's life is a secret. Her father works for the Branch, at the helm of its latest project: monitoring and administering treatments to the four genetically altered boys in the lab below their farmhouse. There's Nick, solemn and brooding; Cas, light-hearted and playful; Trev, smart and caring; and Sam . . . who's stolen Anna's heart.
When the Branch decides it's time to take the boys, Sam stages an escape. Anna's father pushes her to go with them, making Sam promise to keep her away from the Branch, at all costs.
On the run, with her father's warning in her head, Anna begins to doubt everything she thought she knew about herself. She soon discovers that she and Sam are connected in more ways than either of them expected. And if they're both going to survive, they must piece together the clues of their past before the Branch catches up to them and steals it all away. -Goodreads
This book is NOT what it seems! Everything that you think that you know about Anna, Trev, Sam, and Arthur(Anna's dad) changes from the moment that they escape.
A great deal of the beginning of this story is spent fashioning its focus around the boys and questions surrounding who they are and what their pasts are.
As time and the story progress however, people and unexpected turns in the plot have you asking more questions about who Anna is and how she is tied into all of what is going on.
It is her back story that serves as both the "aha" and the shocker moment in a story so full of twists and turns that it should have a roller coaster named for it.
The only two constants in this story are found in the persons of Cass, and Nick. Though Cass's joking nature and seeming never-ending quest for food may begin to rub you the wrong way after a while; you will be grateful for his consistency when things really start to change. As for Nick, the fun there is just trying to figure out whether he and Anna are going to fight before someone can stop them.
The author does a really good job of making her story about the characters' lives, their need for freedom, and their search for answers about their pasts instead of just taking the easy way out and relying in the cat and mouse chase of them vs. agents and their "alterations" taking center stage.
In fact, for most of the read the audience is kept pretty much in the dark as to what alterations the boys have...and as to whether Anna is capable of anything extraordinary at all.
The love story that is Anna and Sam is so sweet and unexpected given all that is going on.
They seem to fit together from the start, but the more that you delve into their pasts, the less likely a couple they seem...or do they?
This is a splendidly crafted story that will cause readers to run the emotional gamut, while holding on for the psychological thrill ride of their lives.