Sunday, January 20, 2013

Review: Altered by Jennifer Rush

Altered (Altered, #1)

Altered by Jennifer Rush
Released- Jan 1st 2013
Publisher- Little Brown Books 
Purchase- Amazon/ B & N / Chapters

When you can’t trust yourself, who can you believe?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, Cas, Trev . . . and Sam, who’s stolen Anna’s heart. When the Branch decides it’s time to take the boys, Sam stages an escape, killing the agents sent to retrieve them. Anna is torn between following Sam or staying behind in the safety of her everyday life. But her father pushes her to flee, making Sam promise to keep her away from the Branch, at all costs. There’s just one problem. Sam and the boys don’t remember anything before living in the lab—not even their true identities.Now on the run, Anna 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.

My Thoughts:
Wow! Altered is an amazing sci-fi mystery thriller that I didn't expect to like as much as I did. Jennifer Rush took such a different approach to this concept and totally made it her own. This was an intense and surprisingly powerful story that had me consumed the entire ride!

Anna Mason has been helping out her dad for years by collecting data from the four boys that have occupied their farmhouse basement for the last five years. They are some kind of experiments or units that the Branch has plans for and while Anna doesn't really know why Sam, Trev, Cas and Nick are there, she's taken to befriending all of them (even Nick) and makes sure they get everything that would make their 'stay' more comfortable. She's always hated to see the boys so trapped and wish she could be the one to set them free. 
One day, when some of the Branch people comes down to visit the 'units' all hell breaks loose and Anna finds herself on the run with the boys, boys who don't remember anything about themselves or their past. 
Soon Anna will discover that her entire life was based on secrets and lies and helps search for clues about who the boys really are. The lines of trust and faith are thin and blurs into hope. Hope for herself and the boys that have become all she's ever known.

Altered has just about everything I like in my escape. It's a story about lies and deception, humanity and science, surviving and instincts  and the ultimate hope. It's action punched, thought provoking and has a sweetly-awkward romance that you can't help cheer for.

I loved pretty much the entire book, but I think what I loved the most was the fact that the entire concept was so intelligently written. I loved how seriously unpredictable it all turned out to be. Every time I would guess at something, I was pretty much shot down within the next chapter. I loved that we didn't get a lot of answers to the growing questions till the exact moment Rush wants to clue in both the characters and the readers. The sci-fi aspects weren't over the top. I mean the boys are stronger and smarter and they have been genetically altered for greatness, but not in the x-men way I was shamelessly expecting. Now this isn't a bad thing, in fact it felt somehow more unique and this being the first book in a series that didn't answer all of our questions, I'm thinking there is a lot more to come. Which is a very good thing.
I loved the entire mystery surrounding every aspect of this story. It was a lot of fun trying to follow the clues and codes and links to everything that was happening. I never knew who I could trust, who was bad and who was good and I gotta say a few characters really surprised me.

It didn't take very long to fall for each one of these characters. I loved that Anna wasn't some weak damsel in distress protag. She can totally handle her own and keep the boys in line at the same time. Each boy has a very endearing personality and easy to love. Trev is the best friend and a shoulder to cry on. Cas is the funny one, loves to eat and goof around. He brought in the perfect comic relief to the more dire situations. Nick is your basic standoffish guy with a stick up know what. But he's always there if you need him. As for Sam? He's the leader of this group, the Alpha. He's edgy and intense and makes brooding look like such a sexy sensation.
The romance is very subtle in this book, which is a good thing when you think about it. It would have felt fake considering they are on the run for their lives and not remembering anything about yourself or your past doesn't help the warm and fuzzy's either. What we did get though was awfully sweet and I have a lot of hope (and suspicions) about what will happen in the next book concerning Sam and Anna.

All in all, I had a great time reading this book. The concept is smart, fresh and alive. The characters are all fascinating and the writing is brilliant. I can't wait to get my hands on the sequel! 

An amazing debut!

Find the author:
Goodreads / Website

                                                                  4 Snowflakes 


  1. Great review. I love the mix of sci-fi and romance and mystery. Sounds like I should put this on my list!

    1. Thankies!:) This book has a wonderful blend. Enjoy!:)

  2. After reading your review, I have to get this book. I've seen it reviewed on other blogs, too, and it does seem like a really good read :)

    Julie K

    1. Thanks so much! This one surprised me in the best way possible! Hope you enjoy it as much as me:)

  3. Four hot boys?! I've got to read this! I love that this is action packed and that Anna sounds like a strong heroine. Lovely review Tina. I think I already added this in my TBR, but if not I'm going to. :)

  4. Thanks Rach! You will love these boys and Anna! I can't wait to hear what you think of it!:)