Title: Dark Days
Author: Kate Ormand
Book #: 1
Reading Level: YA
Goodreads Rating: 3.60
Published: June 3rd, 2014
The future world has been divided into sectors--each the same as the other. Surrounded by thick steel fences, there is no way in and no way out. Yet a cyborg army penetrates each sector, picking off its citizens one by one, until no one is left. Behind the sectors' thick walls, the citizens wait to die. Few will be chosen to survive what's coming; the rest will be left behind to suffer. A new world has been created, and its rulers are incredibly selective on who will become a citizen. They want only those with important roles in society to help create a more perfect future.
Sixteen-year-old Sia lives in one of the sectors as part of a family that is far too ordinary to be picked to live. According to the digital clock that towers high above her sector, she has only fifteen days to live. Sia has seen the reports and knows a horrific death is in store for her, but she is determined to make the most of her final days. Sia refuses to mourn her short life, instead promising herself that she'll stay strong, despite being suffocated by her depressed mother and her frightened best friend. Just when Sia feels more alone than ever, she meets Mace, a mysterious boy. There is something that draws Sia to him, despite his dangerousness, and together, they join a group of rebels and embark on an epic journey to destroy the new world and its machines, and to put an end to the slaughter of innocent people.
"They said keeping us contained would keep us safe. But look at us now. We're trapped. The walls were meant to shield us from harm, but now we'll die because we can't get out. We're like animals in a cage."
The thing about Dark Days is that it was just like every other dystopian title out there. It blended in too much. Just like it's town and most of it's citizens, it isn't special enough. I mean, it is a quick read and the part with the cyborgs was kind of cool (because, come on cyborgs!) but even on this aspect of the novel I felt like the author barely scratched the surface. The answers or excuses we are given to explain why things work as they work are shallow and I believe just given so that the reader will be satisfied that things have an explanation.
"--climate change and the reduction of the population and extinction of most of the world's species. Then they'll discuss how the people were spread out on what was left of the planet. And then how the sectors came about, to round everyone up and create communities where people could stay together, stay safe"
I am sorry but what exactly do these people need protection from again? We never actually get an answer to this. They keep saying that the walls were built up to protect the people from something but that something is never actually mentioned. Climate change? How did the population get reduced so much? Also if this is the reason why they decided to round up people in the first place why start killing them and reducing the population even more than before?! Why protect them in the first place if later on you will decide just to kill them? Also, what government are these people under? Is the creator of the "New World" development the president? What went on with the rest of the world?
I have SO many questions. Like seriously, plot holes for DAYS. If I were these people I would have constructed a ladder or SOMETHING out of the shit they have in their sector and just CLIMBED THE FUCKING WALL. Because apparently NOTHING can bring the walls down... NOTHING. I wonder what these walls are made out of.
Also the cyborgs. Sure, they are cool, and I liked how the author WENT there and described the gruesome deaths at the hands of the machines. But (there's always a but with this book) read this:
"They are drawn to human life. It was bound to sense you, standing too close to the door. Don't worry, we've all done it. Spooky, aren't they?"
Sure spooky, but then again what do you mean by human life? Are they drawn by noise? Body heat? HUMAN SMELL? I just don't get this. It seems such a simple solution to something that needed to be a bit more complicated. Again, a band aid solution which doesn't exactly work. Also, these cyborgs seen a bit flimsy, too easy to knock down.
Now, Sia. I know this girl just wants to help her sector (after a while) but the decisions she make are ridiculously stupid. She doesn't think her plans through, and then SOMEHOW they just manage to work. With some other books I can look the other way, but everything was just too convenient. Everybody could see that her plan was stupid and that it was going to fail but she still went with it and SOMEHOW survived to live another day. Other than making the stupidest decisions on Earth though she didn't quite stand out from the rest, no wonder they didn't decide to save her.
Overall my problem with Dark Days was the poor world building. I am sorry and I hope miss Kate Ormand has better luck in the future with some of her other work. As a side note I don't like the cover at all. This is why:
I don't believe this book is part of the tour, and yet the cover is eerily similar. The font, the colors, the background... Just not good. It was a nice try, it just didn't succeed.