Series: The Thousandth Floor #1
Author: Katherine McGee
Genre: Young Adult
Pages: 338 Pages, Hardcover
Publication: August 30th 2016, HarperCollins
Source: Thank you to LoveReading4Kids and HarperCollins for sending me this book in exchange for an honest review!
Rating: 3.5/5 Cupcakes!
New York City as you’ve never seen it before. A thousand-story tower stretching into the sky. A glittering vision of the future, where anything is possible—if you want it enough.
Welcome to Manhattan, 2118.
A hundred years in the future, New York is a city of innovation and dreams. But people never change: everyone here wants something…and everyone has something to lose.
Leda Cole’s flawless exterior belies a secret addiction—to a drug she never should have tried and a boy she never should have touched.
Eris Dodd-Radson’s beautiful, carefree life falls to pieces when a heartbreaking betrayal tears her family apart.
Rylin Myers’s job on one of the highest floors sweeps her into a world—and a romance—she never imagined…but will her new life cost Rylin her old one?
Watt Bakradi is a tech genius with a secret: he knows everything about everyone. But when he’s hired to spy by an upper-floor girl, he finds himself caught up in a complicated web of lies.
And living above everyone else on the thousandth floor is Avery Fuller, the girl genetically designed to be perfect. The girl who seems to have it all—yet is tormented by the one thing she can never have.
Debut author Katharine McGee has created a breathtakingly original series filled with high-tech luxury and futuristic glamour, where the impossible feels just within reach. But in this world, the higher you go, the farther there is to fall….
When I was offered to review The Thousandth Floor, I immediately jumped at the opportunity! After having seen the book circling around the blogosphere my interest was piqued and I knew I needed it in my life. A futuristic New York City that occupies a building combined with the lifestyle of the rich and the beautiful and the scandalous secrets that they keep, well, it sounded like a book that I would absolutely adore. And although there were moments that had my heart racing and my fingers turning the pages at lightning speed, there were also moments that had me putting the book down with no immediate desire to pick it back up.
The Thousandth Floor has five point of views, which may seem like a lot but none of the characters blur together and they each have their own distinct personality and I never found myself confused, which is a plus. The problem with having a lot of POVs is that there is often a character that the reader doesn't like and it can be torturous reading from their perspective as we just can't bring ourselves to care about them. I never felt that way whilst reading the book but I think that may be due to the fact that I didn't really care about any of the characters all that much. I never felt truly connected to them and in order for me to fully enjoy a book I need to be connected to the characters. All the characters were morally grey, all were hiding secrets that could very well consume them, all were on the verge of destroying themselves and their reputation to the point of no recovery which made for an interesting read but quite surprisingly, not a very emotional read.
Avery started out as my favourite character as she wasn't as vindictive or shallow as the other characters. But after discovering her secret I'm not entirely sure how I feel about her because...ew. Despite that though, I still liked her – she was a good person, a good friend and loyal and I admired her had good qualities.
Throughout the novel my perception and fondness of the characters were always fluctuationg and Leda was a the character that elicited the most varying emotions from me. At first I liked her, she'd had a troubled past involving broken hearts and destructive addictions and I wanted the best for her, I truly did. We're first acquainted with Leda after her return home from a stint in rehab so I was rooting for her constantly, hoping that she could keep her demons at bay. But by the end of the book I strongly, very strongly, disliked her. She's manipulative, cruel and selfish and just a terrible person, really.
Eris evoked the complete opposite emotions from me compared to that of Leda. I went from disliking her as she was quite shallow and superficial but by the end, I had grown to like her. I felt like she underwent some character growth and she became more open-minded and genuine and by the end of the novel I definitely liked her more than the other characters.
I'm still on the fence about how I feel about Rylin. I admired her for working and trying to keep a roof over her and her little sister's head but I didn't like her penchant for drug abuse, partying and getting involved with illegal happenings. I never really felt like I got to know Rylin and her character didn't add much to the story.
The last character is Watt and, come to think of it, I quite liked Watt. He wasn't shallow and cruel like the girls could be. He too was far from perfection though but I appreciated his strong work ethic and his deep motivation to get into a good college as well as his desire to work so that he could pay for some of his siblings' clothing items and his education – even though he didn't earn it in the most honest of ways. He was loyal and quite kind, probably the most likable character in the book.
The relationships in this book are, for want of better words, messed up. They're dysfunctional, unrealistic and – in terms of the way they are written – not very evocative. I never felt a deep connection between any of the characters whose relationships should've elicited some kind of emotional response from me. I didn't feel any of the friendships between the girls, nor the romance between certain characters – at times it felt similar to watching two cardboard boxes interacting – dull and emotionless. I also had a problem with the way adoption/biological and non-biological families were represented in this book which I shall rant about below. However, they are spoilery so highlight if you want to read about that.
1. Eris and her dad
Eris has spent the past 18 years of her life believing that Everett is her father when SURPRISE, it turns out that he's not her biological father. Upon finding this out, Eris stops calling him her dad whenever she thinks of him/speaks of him and instead calls him by his first name. Then, Eris' dad cuts off all contact from Eris, he wants nothing to do with her and he can barely look her in the eye. I can only imagine how devastating it would be for both the parent and child to find this out but surely it wouldn't erase the past 18 years spent together? Everett clearly adored Eris and I just can't comprehend that his feelings towards her would alter so drastically and that he'd want nothing to do with her? If you love someone you won't dismiss them like that, surely? Also, I didn't understand Eris' problem with calling him – or even referring to him – as her dad. He was still her dad, maybe not biologically but eighteen years – you can't and wouldn't want to erase that, would you?
2. Avery and Atlas
Nope nope nope nope. The relationship felt way too incestuous. Sure, they weren't strictly related but their parents adopted Atlas when he was 7 and Avery was 5 so they've been siblings for years and if you're adopted, you're family, no matter if someone says otherwise. Maybe if they were step-siblings and had just met each other I wouldn't be as disgusted but seriously, it just felt gross and wrong and I can't get on board with it.
The plot was okay. The book started out intriguing, but after the first chapter it stalled and it lacked that “kick”that initially drew me in. I'll be completely honest, this book bored me for the majority of it and I never had an urge to pick it up after putting it down. It also felt unnecessarily long as there was a lot of pettiness and relationship drama. However, the past 140 pages or so, the lies started tripping themselves up, the secrets became deathly and the characters became reckless and ruthless and things got intense quickly and despite not loving this book my interest in it has been piqued again because those last few chapters were intense, bruh.
However, there were some things I liked! I loved how unique this book was – New York City contained in a building? I thought that was incredibly fascinating as it's something I've never encountered before. I also enjoyed reading about the technology if the 22nd century. I appreciated that although this book was set in the future it didn't contain a corrupt government or technology that was destroying the human race, like many books that incorporate futuristic technology do.
The Thousandth Floor had an intriguing premise but unfortunately it didn't meet my sky-high (ha...almost a pun) expectations. Although I never really found myself fully immersed, or connected to the relationships or the characters, I will be reading the next book as the lies, betrayal and dark secrets that threaten to engulf the characters' has me incredibly intrigued to see how things turn out. I loved the unique setting of futuristic New York, the detailed descriptions of mind-blowing technology and the scandalous secrets that threatened to consume the beautifully deceptive and deeply flawed characters. Fragile lives, luscious lies and deceit makes this a read that by the end of the book will have you wanting more!