2017 has been a real treat for Rachel Vincent fans – Vincent has released 4 new publications all within the span of a few months, meaning that we’ve all been spoilt for choice as for what to read next.
I decided to go with ‘Brave New Girl’, as I was really intrigued by the blurb. I loved the idea behind this one – all the futuristic technology and messing with genes and the idea of the perfect designer baby that could be cloned to produce workers… I just really loved the concept, and Vincent executed this perfectly. The setting was so well done and it was so easy to picture this world that Dhalia 16 lived in. I really loved this whole idea! This really reminded me of Margaret Atwood’s ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’, and a film called ‘The Island’ featuring Ewan McGregor which has a very similar concept. If you liked those kind of stories you are definitely going to love this one!
Dhalia 16 was a cute character to read about – mainly because of so much innocence that was conveyed through her character’s perspective of the world around her. All of the clones grow up believing 100% that everything they’ve been taught about their way of life is correct, and no one questions whether this is really true. There was a little aspect to the narrative that was a little slow or stilted, which I think was mainly down to Dhalia’s characterisation – but Vincent captured this sheltered individual perfectly and how she described things later on in the novel made it clear she comes from a completely different world to us. I found it strange that I had a feel of the narrative coming across as slow at points because that wasn’t for a lack of plot – I really do think this was more down to Dhalia’s character, and this was a necessary evolution of the plot as she lives such a sheltered life with everything planned out for her. She’s never had to make any real decisions that affect anything in her life on a major scale, as have neither of her clones.
I really loved the plot development, and the innocent romance between Trigger 17 and Dhalia 16. Things plotted out nicely along the narrative timeline and things escalated to a point I hadn’t seen coming – I’d expected a typical dystopian world outside of the sheltered one that Dhalia 16 knew, and we somewhat got overtones of that but in a more futuristic setting – maybe before the crux of the story world falling around our protagonist. I was still hooked to the page though, as the story was unraveling at a brilliant pace that fed you all the information you needed just at the right times.
Don’t even get me started on that ending – I was left gaping at the book at what Dhalia 16 discovered just before the end of the last page. It threw me off a bit because the pacing had been pretty standard up until this point and then Vincent throws a massive plot twist right at you that left me hungry to know more – plus from the excerpt of the next novel in the back of the book I was even more curious as to what to expect from the sequel.
Overall this was a brilliant concept that I absolutely loved, and I can’t wait to find out what else Vincent has in store for Dhalia 16. I would give it a 4/5, and you should definitely give this one a go if you like this type of fiction.