[Review] Nirvana - ARC

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Title: Nirvana

Series: Nirvana #1

Author: J.R. Stewart

Genre: Science Fiction

Publishing: November 10, 2015

Source: Copy provided by NetGalley

Quicklinks: Amazon | Goodreads

When the real world is emptied of all that you love, how can you keep yourself from dependence on the virtual?

Larissa Kenders lives in a world where the real and the virtual intermingle daily. After the supposed death of her soulmate, Andrew, Larissa is able to find solace by escaping to Nirvana, a virtual world where anything is possible – even visits with Andrew. Although Larissa is told that these meetings are not real, she cannot shake her suspicion that Andrew is indeed alive. When she begins an investigation of Hexagon, the very institution that she has been taught to trust, Larissa uncovers much more than she ever expected and places herself in serious danger. Her biggest challenge, however, remains determining what is real – and what is virtual.

Nirvana is the first installment in the three-part “Nirvana” series, a fast-paced, page-turning young adult trilogy that combines elements of the romance, mystery, and science fiction genres. This first novel introduces readers to a heroine who refuses to give up on the man she loves, even if it means taking on an entire government to do so.
Nirvana is a very interesting story tying together the growing virtual reality world and an issue coming to surface in our own reality, the extinction of bees. When I stumbled upon this book on NetGalley, the summary immediately had me wanting to read more. I've always had a thing with futuristic worlds that deal with virtual reality in some way. That being said, I just HAD to read it. 

The beginning of this book was terrific, it really gripped me and made me want to read more. That's great; to have a good book, you must have a good beginning to hook the reader. A review posted before this on Goodreads was right; the first 10% of the book was great (duh, I already said that). However, reading a bit beyond that 10%, things started to get bland and borderline boring. 

Don't get me wrong, the whole premise is great. I love the plot, but because of the one-dimensional characters with barely any development, the lack of connection with any of them, that love wavered. This book has so much potential, but it seems like the author just... didn't take advantage of the opportunity to make it great. I feel like with these types of books, there needs to be some sort of mystery, keeping the reader guessing. However, we knew what Larissa thought even before it was revealed.

Yes, the book was bland, but that didn't stop me from reading. There are a lot of books out there that are just so... barren of everything necessary to make a good story that I just stop reading, but I still kept going. I wanted to know what would happen. I wanted to see where this takes our Lead. I wanted to see where the author would take us.

As for the ending, I'd have to say it was great. Sure, the book may have been lacking, but the ending definitely leaves you wanting to read the next book. Would I continue with the series? Sure. I'd love to know what happens and if questions get answered, but it's not the type of want where I'm just pissed the book ends and I have to wait forever for the next to come out. I can wait. 

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