Those of you around my age may not believe this, but I have never read an Animorphs book. Books about animals were so boring to me as a kid, so why would I want to read a book about kids who could turn into animals? Seemed like a recipe for a nap to me.
So let’s just say I am glad that Applegate’s and Grant’s return to collaboration does not involve a resuscitation of that series. In fact, I don’t think there’s a single animal in Eve and Adam.
The book starts off badly for Evening Spiker, whose mother is a renowned and very wealthy scientist who runs Spiker Biopharm. Eve is hit by a car on page 1, and she’s rushed to the hospital. Her mother promptly picks her up and takes her back to Spiker Biopharm, where apparently she will receive better treatment.
As she recuperates, her mother decides to give her a project to work on: use some of the company’s educational technology to “create” a perfect boy in the lab. This aspect of the story is actually smaller than the jacket copy would have you think. For most of the story, it provides a few laughs but is of little importance.
The more important aspect involves Solo Plisskin, a teenage boy who works for Ms. Spiker. He’s got some sort of vendetta against her that he’s managed to keep hidden, but we follow his plans to eventually bring her down. He’s drawn to Eve, though, and as Eve begins to unravel some of the secrets of her mother’s company, Solo starts to see how they involve to his own secrets.
The story is told in Eve’s and Solo’s alternating points of view. There’s a clear romantic attraction there, but since Eve is the daughter of someone Solo hates, there’s resistance, too. There’s plenty of suspense as well. Although Solo clearly knows what he has against Ms. Spiker, he’s not telling until the absolute last moment, so we can only guess.
The set up is interesting, but it seemed like Eve and Adam was more of a gimmick than a story. There was nothing outstanding about the writing – if you made all of the pronouns gender-neutral, I doubt I’d be able to tell you who was narrating at any particular point. The big revelations weren’t terribly interesting or original and I was a bit bored throughout, although I know the authors were shooting for a fast-paced sci fi thriller. And I was never engaged in either Eve’s or Solo’s problems. In fact, I found Eve’s mother to be a more engaging character than either of the two leads. There will be a sequel, but I doubt I’ll bother reading it.
All that said, there will be people who get more out of this reading experience than I did (like always). Readers a bit more invested in romance will probably enjoy it more, and those who are just dipping their toes into sci fi might find this a good place to start. It’s certainly an ephemeral book, though.
Review copy received from the publisher. Eve and Adam hits shelves October 2.