Book Review: This Cruel Design by Emily Suvada

Cat thought the Hydra epidemic was over, but when new cases pop up, Cat must team up with an enemy to fix the vaccine before the virus spirals out of control in this thrilling sequel to This Mortal Coil, which New York Times bestselling author Amie Kaufman says “redefines ‘unputdownable.’”

The nightmare of the outbreak is finally over, but Cat’s fight has only just begun.

Exhausted, wounded, and reeling from revelations that have shaken her to her core, Cat is at a breaking point. Camped in the woods with Cole and Leoben, she’s working day and night, desperate to find a way to stop Lachlan’s plan to reprogram humanity. But she’s failing—Cat can’t even control her newly regrown panel, and try as she might to ignore them, she keeps seeing glitching visions from her past everywhere she turns.

When news arrives that the Hydra virus might not be as dead as they’d thought, the group is pushed into an uneasy alliance with Cartaxus to hunt down Lachlan and fix the vaccine. Their search takes them to Entropia, a city of genehackers hidden deep in the desert that could also hold the answers about Cat’s past that she’s been searching for.

But when confronted with lies and betrayals, Cat is forced to question everything she knows and everyone she trusts. And while Lachlan is always two steps ahead, the biggest threat to Cat may be the secrets buried in her own mind.



I received a copy of this book from Simon & Schuster Canada through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

So when the opportunity came up to request this book, I actually thought it was something else, and the second of another series I’d started a while back. It was only when the approval came through that I realized my error. Oops. Thankfully, a friend had read the first book, and was able to give me the overall idea of what had happened in that one that I was able to dive into this one without too much confusion or throwing off my reading schedule to add in an extra book.

Make sure to always double check the series if you’re requesting a sequel for review, folks.

However, this book was one hell of a ride. From the first chapter, you’re completely hooked and on this adventure that you’re not sure is going to go all that well, and every single time you think to yourself, ‘I think I’ll go do something else now’, it tosses another curveball at you. Before you know it, you’ve read a hundred pages because you couldn’t stop reading.

The Good Points of This Cruel Design:

With any second book, you go into it wondering if it’s going to be another placeholder or filler until you get to the good stuff in the third book, but that is definitely not the case. And if it is, the first book must be stellar. The author went all out for this one, and it really shows throughout the book and how the story progresses.

The pacing in this book is to die for. It’s something akin to being on a runaway train or a rocket or something else insanely fast. You fly through this and so much happens and you can’t possibly put it down because you feel like you’ll miss something while you’re away from it.

I loved all the tech throughout this book. I don’t know a lot about that sort of thing beyond generally how to use technology, but I never felt lost or confused when it came to that aspect of this book, even though some of it was rather intense. At the same time, though, if you do know about tech, you probably also won’t be bored by over-explaining, because that didn’t happen either. It was a great balance.

I loved the way they discussed using technology to alter the human form and DNA. Though perhaps not the point of the book, it did bring up some interesting points and made me think more about how we manipulate ourselves, even in our current time.

The Downsides of This Cruel Design:

I wasn’t super impressed with the characters throughout this book. They all felt a little the same to me, other than the odd one or two traits here or there. I kept mixing up the boys especially in the first hundred pages or so.

Though I loved the pacing, sometimes things just kind of showed up at the perfect time and happened to work, and seemed to have no other context. Which maybe is because I only got the overview of the first book, but sometimes left me a little thrown off.

All in all, this book was brilliantly done, and I think I need to go back and read the first one now, because I feel like I’ve missed out. If you’re into technology-based science fiction or enjoy fast-paced books, you should definitely check out this series!

Find This Cruel Design on Book Depository

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