LIFEL1K3 is a WILD post apocalyptic robotic explosion.
It’s honestly very very a typical Jay Kristoff book, with intelligent AI’s and unique slang and badass epic girlpower and BLOOD EVERYWHERE. I enjoyed it! But I honestly have to admit I felt slightly underwhelmed because I’ve read this type of story a lot and called the plot twists like two hundred kilometres early. (Is this the downside to reading so much?! GASP.)
☆ OTHER REVIEWS OF JAY KRISTOFF BOOKS ☆
✓ ✗ It comes with a HEFTY pitch which was part awesome, part…spoilery?!
On the front cover it says: “Romeo And Juliet meets Mad Max meets Xmen meets Blade Runner.” Now I don’t know a thing about Blade Runner so I’m skimming over that one. It did have a Romeo-Juliet-esque foribbden romnace but it was WILDLY MAD MAX. This is like homage to Mad Max (!!). I also add in that it’s really hugely Pinocchio + SO MANY Anastasia references. It also reminded me of Blood Red Road x This Mortal Coil x Frost x The Diabolic x The Body Electric—
ummm so we see our small problem here.
I’ve kind of read the story before. This version was well written and fun and I loved the characters, but I knew all the upcoming plot twists because (a) that looooong pitch ON THE FRONT COVER gives them to us! and (b) I’ve read a lot of books oops.
✓ Our story follows Eve who fights with robots until she does some X-Men magickery and melts her opponent. Then she has to run.
People are after her to kill her! And then she finds this dead-android on a scrap heap! But he turns out to be alive and knows her from her past. Because obviously she has a complicated past where her dad built lifelike androids and it backfired massively. (I mean OF COURSE she knew him from the past. ahem. ahem.) But I did like how spicy the adventure kickstarted. It showed this cutthroat, dusty, murder world they live in (APOCALYPSE IS NOW) and also her home, her granddad, her trusty cyborg dog, and her BFF, Lemon.
Then we get: gunfights, getting eaten by a kraken at the bottom of the sea, desert races, a murderous hitman “preacher”, and androids’ blood everywhere.
✓ I enjoyed the characters a lot!
They were this excellent mix of sass and punky power and I LOVED THEM. There is:
- EVE: she’s so freaking BADASS but emotional!
- LEMON: she will kick you in the face while telling you a super cool joke. So basically I loved her. Also she + Eve have this intensely tight and wholesome friendship that I adored?! I shouldn’t be so starved for epic female/friendships, but YET HERE WE ARE.
- CYBORG DOG: I absolutely forget his name, please forgive me. But I loved him!!
- CRICKET: a small (he hates being called that) robot who definitely functions as Eve’s conscious because Eve sees something dangerous and is like: “YES!” while Cricket is shrieking, “NO.”
- EZEKIEL: he’s our hot love interest lifelike android…super perfect in every way which gave him the personality of a plastic spoon. BUT HE WAS LOVELY and loyal!
✓ I really loved the writing too!
It could be a tiny bit corny at times and I had to get used to the slang, but it was fun and the pace was snappy and scenes fast! They whipped banter back and forth so awesomely. And it really made the settings come alive: all dust and blood and oil and grease. I could totally see it.
✗ But briefly? Here were the things that were an “eh no” from me.
☆ guys Ezekiel and a toaster could’ve swapped place and it would’ve worked
☆ the romance was super fast and therefore felt super flat
☆ Eve’s flip out at the end at Lemon and Ezekiel was REALLY annoying and didn’t make sense to me
☆ the technical sci-fi-robot jargon had me rather lost
☆ the plot twists at the end were obvious
☆ it lacked the kind of punch that Nevernight and Illuminae gave me unfortunately
LIFEL1K3 is a gritty and bloody apocalyptic shout, and while I did find it predictable and “seen it already”, it was still fun! I loved the aesthetics of the cutthroat world, the grease splattered mechanics and gears, and the corrupt AI robots.
THANKS TO ALLEN & UNWIN FOR THE ARC. Lifelike by Jay Kristoff is published May 2018!
On an island junkyard beneath a sky that glows with radiation, a deadly secret lies buried in the scrap. Seventeen-year-old Eve isn’t looking for trouble-she’s too busy looking over her shoulder. The robot gladiator she spent months building has been reduced to a smoking wreck, she’s on the local gangster’s wanted list, and the only thing keeping her grandpa alive is the money she just lost to the bookies. Worst of all, she’s discovered she can somehow destroy machines with the power of her mind, and a bunch of puritanical fanatics are building a coffin her size because of it. If she’s ever had a worse day, Eve can’t remember it.
The problem is, Eve has had a worse day–one that lingers in her nightmares and the cybernetic implant where her memories used to be. Her discovery of a handsome android named Ezekiel-called a “Lifelike” because they resemble humans–will bring her world crashing down and make her question whether her entire life is a lie.
With her best friend Lemon Fresh and her robotic sidekick Cricket in tow, Eve will trek across deserts of glass, battle unkillable bots, and infiltrate towering megacities to save the ones she loves … and learn the truth about the bloody secrets of her past.