Welcome to Chapter Break’s stop on the Shudder tour finale of Samantha Durante’s summer-long review tour. My stop is showcasing these fun quotes from this summer Shudder summer-long tour about VILLAINS!!!
Interview w/ Samantha at Joanna In the Sky With Books:
Actually, almost EVERY character in the trilogy is based on someone I know, or more likely a combination of people I know…the Engineers(the bad guys) are based on a variety of people I’ve met and disliked over the years for their general arrogance and lack of ability to connect with people (though I’m not naming names, haha). I tend to write what I know, so many elements of the story are somehow based in truth. 🙂
Review from WeaklingNo14’s Wondrous Reviews
I have literally no words. I mean, I did not expect it to go like this, to happen like this. I actually had to stop reading half-way through because it was so freaking intense, I thought I would start crying or something if I carried on. You’d think when we got chapters from the POV of the bad guys, we’d be less in the dark about what is happening, but, alas, no. I was completely engrossed, trying to figure out what was going on with the clues that I had been given. I read somewhere that the best villain’s are the ones that, if you wrote a book from their POV, then it would make complete sense. I see that in this book. When they were explaining their plans and why they had done all of this….I felt for them. I understood them. Then I found out what they’d actually done to Lizzie and my mouth dropped, literally. I don’t know how to feel know. This book was an absolute rollercoaster.
Review at New Adult Addiction
I loved the political undertones because it’s so true. Some people think that the end justifies the means no matter how many lives it will cost to reach the desired result. And it really needs to be explored over and over again in literature and film and other sources of social entertainment, so people don’t forget that this philosophy has been put into practice countless times over thousands of year and millions of people have died because of it. So I completely loved the theme running through this trilogy and how Durante gives both sides by having the higher ups explain their reasoning to one of the captured rebels. And it does come off as pretty reasonable, that’s the scary part. Because everything can be justified, in a used car salesman sorta way, when you put it in certain terms. I think far too few dystopians clearly illustrate the opposing side like Durante does in this series.
Title: Stitch (Stitch Trilogy #1)
Author: Samantha Durante
Publication Date: August 1, 2012
Source: personal copy (but author also provided copy if we didn’t already have it)
Description: Her heart races, her muscles coil, and every impulse in Alessa’s body screams at her to run… but yet she’s powerless to move.
Still struggling to find her footing after the sudden death of her parents, the last thing college freshman Alessa has the strength to deal with is the inexplicable visceral pull drawing her to a handsome ghostly presence. In between grappling with exams and sorority soirees – and disturbing recurring dreams of being captive in a futuristic prison hell – Alessa is determined to unravel the mystery of the apparition who leaves her breathless. But the terrifying secret she uncovers will find her groping desperately through her nightmares for answers.
Because what Alessa hasn’t figured out yet is that she’s not really a student, the object of her obsession is no ghost, and her sneaking suspicions that something sinister is lurking behind the walls of her university’s idyllic campus are only just scratching the surface…
The opening installment in a twist-laden trilogy, Stitch spans the genres of paranormal romance and dystopian sci-fi to explore the challenges of a society in transition, where morality, vision, and pragmatism collide leaving the average citizen to suffer the results.
Stitch is a very unique kind of dystopian as it merges different genre into one compelling story. It starts off seeming like a time travel romance with Alessa in what we think is present day seeing the ghost of Isaac from the past. She tries to uncover historical facts that explain why she is seeing him, and as she learns that he died in a fire with his family, she tries to warn him. Several times through the book we have a POV shift from Alessa to Isaac to get his perspective. There didn’t seem to be a pattern to when we got Isaac’s POV, for example we got a few chapters about a third of the way through, and then a few more much later in the book, so it wasn’t easy to try to follow his story line. I felt that the beginning was a bit on the slow side compared to the second half of the book. There were so many details about her classes and her sorority’s party that didn’t seem to fit. I felt a bit bored and it took me longer than I expected to get through the first half of this book. Of course later when we learn the truth, those details begin to make sense.
We also have a few time shifts in the story with dreams or flashbacks of the back story that occurred before this point. Also, once we finally learn the truth about the world they live in, the story speeds up and time moves very quickly in our current day perception as well as in the flashbacks. There were details of the world that I think could have been introduced better, such as what was the illness exactly that threatened the population, and how the stitch technology came about. But I wonder if the answers will come in future books, especially with the way this first book ended giving a perfect setup to explain more in book 2.
Overall, I liked this debut. I enjoyed the merging of genre and thought it was a unique twist on sci-fi and dystopia, with a little paranormal aspect until we learn otherwise. I felt there could have been more dialogue and maybe less inner monologue narration, but when the story picked up in pace, it really got interesting. I’m looking forward to jumping right into Shudder.
Author: Samantha Durante
Publication Date: June 15, 2013
Source: ebook provided for review purposes
Description: It’s only been three days, and already everything is different.
Paragon is behind her, but somehow Alessa’s life may actually have gotten worse. In a wrenching twist of fate, she traded the safety and companionship of her sister for that of her true love, losing a vital partner she’d counted on for the ordeal ahead. Her comfortable university life is but a distant memory, as she faces the prospect of surviving a bleak winter on the meager remains of a ravaged world. And if she’d thought she’d tasted fear upon seeing a ghost, she was wrong; now she’s discovering new depths of terror while being hunted by a deadly virus and a terrifying pack of superhuman creatures thirsting for blood.
And then there are the visions.
The memory-altering “stitch” unlocked something in Alessa’s mind, and now she can’t shake the constant flood of alien feelings ransacking her emotions. Haunting memories of an old flame are driving a deep and painful rift into her once-secure relationship. And a series of staggering revelations about the treacherous Engineers – and the bone-chilling deceit shrouding her world’s sorry history – will soon leave Alessa reeling…
The second installment in the electrifying Stitch Trilogy, Shudder follows Samantha Durante’s shocking and innovative debut with a heart-pounding, paranormal-dusted dystopian adventure sure to keep the pages turning.
I know, I gave this book 5 stars. What? Yea, it’s just that awesome. It is one of the best dystopias I’ve read in a few years (seriously, since Hunger Games and Divergent, which are my favorites in this genre). It has everything and all types of feels – betrayal, survival, despair, rage, vengeance, love, you name it. I devoured this book in a couple of sittings. Where the first book was just good, this sequel was wonderful.
I really liked all the POVs. We got to see it from the government’s perspective and learn so much about the world. It answered all my questions from the first book and made the story so much more real. I do think it is interesting how this is the second book I read this month that deals with the particular topic of overpopulation and how to reduce our numbers. This real-world possibility makes this a more powerful read. I liked that we got more information on the stitch technology and how dangerous it is. Seriously, I was picturing the tech from Dollhouse here.
Alessa’s “gift” was also really interesting. It definitely helped put a lot in perspective and foreshadowed the truth behind the “creatures”. I liked how the characters were believable. Alessa knows there is going to be a huge war between the rebels and the government and doesn’t want to risk the lives of her boyfriend and sister. But then she learns more about what the government did and re-evaluates her position. I thought that was very honest and shows her character’s strengths and weaknesses very well.
I’m very interested in finding out what happens next. The third book in the trilogy will be epic! I want know what happens with the traitor and whether she comes around or sticks to what the government told her. I definitely hope to be part of the blog tour for Stuck!
* Signed print copy of Stitch & Shudder for you and two friends (USA only)
* Signed (via Authorgraph) e-book copies of Stitch & Shudder for you and two friends (Int’l)
* Signed Stitch & Shudder bookmarks + e-book copies of Stitch & Shudder (Int’l)
* $10 Amazon Gift Card (Int’l)
* $5 Amazon Gift Card (Int’l)
About the Author
Samantha Durante lives in Westchester County, New York with her husband, Sudeep, and her cat, Gio. Formerly an engineer at Microsoft, Samantha left the world of software in 2010 to pursue her entrepreneurial dreams and a lifelong love of writing. A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania’s Jerome Fisher Program in Management & Technology, Samantha is currently working full time for her company Medley Media Associates as a freelance business writer and communications consultant. The Stitch Trilogy is her debut series. Learn more about Samantha at www.samanthadurante.com.
24 – The Reading Diaries – Review
– The (Mis)Adventures of a Twenty-Something Year Old Girl
– Rose & Beps Blog
25 – Chapter Break – Review
– Wonderings of One Person – Review
26 – A Tiffyfit’s Reading Corner – Review
– Kindred Dreamhart
27 – YA Book Addict – Review
– Mommasez… – Review
29 – Mel’s Shelves – Review
31 – Donnie Darko Girl – Review
Sept. 1 – The Book Rogue
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