By: Celine | December 17, 2014 | (36) Comments

DNF Review: The Body Electric by Beth RevisThe Body Electric by Beth Revis
Publisher: Scripturient Books
Release Date: October 6th, 2014
Genres: Science Fiction, YA
Source: Received in exchange for review
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The future world is at peace.

Ella Shepherd has dedicated her life to using her unique gift—the ability to enter people’s dreams and memories using technology developed by her mother—to help others relive their happy memories.

But not all is at it seems.

Ella starts seeing impossible things—images of her dead father, warnings of who she cannot trust. Her government recruits her to spy on a rebel group, using her ability to experience—and influence—the memories of traitors. But the leader of the rebels claims they used to be in love—even though Ella’s never met him before in her life. Which can only mean one thing…

Someone’s altered her memory.

Ella’s gift is enough to overthrow a corrupt government or crush a growing rebel group. She is the key to stopping a war she didn’t even know was happening. But if someone else has been inside Ella’s head, she cannot trust her own memories, thoughts, or feelings.

So who can she trust?

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It’s with a heavy heart I write this review. I’ve always heard great things about Revis’ books and while I had never read any of them, I was eagerly looking forward to The Body Electric. Throw a pretty cover into the mix and I’m game. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get into The Body Electric at all and in the end, I DNF’ed it.

The world Revis establishes in The Body Electric is intruiging. We’re in the future somewhere, where androids have taken over pretty much all the tasks humans no longer wanted to do. The world has seen some new, devastating wars, and, as per usual in the genre, we’re not sure whether the government can be trusted. In the middle of it all is Ella, our POC main character (I approve!), trying to figure out just what is going on exactly. She has to decide whether to help the government or the rebels, and her unique gift could definitely change the game for both groups.

Revis does some interesting things with her world building, and I like how she subtly raised questions about androids vs humans and what it means to be human, and whether an android can ever be considered one. However, while this was interesting and challenging, I was left wanting more. Especially from the characters: even after 44% (that was the point I DNF’ed it) I had no feel for Ella’s character at all. Who is she, really? I understand she might be a bit more of a blank canvas because there has possibly been messed with her memory, but even then I expect more from her. For me, she just wasn’t fleshed out enough. Even halfway into the story she felt flat to me, and the same goes for the other characters.

Which brings me to my main problem: the love interest and romance. This is where I started cringing a bit. It’s very personal and probably not something anyone but me will feel, but I did feel like this and it seriously held me back. My problem was with the love interest. He just didn’t feel real to me. I did not get his character. And if I’m completely honest, it feels like his character is a strange mishmash of the character traits everybody seems to like in a love  interest nowadays. But it just didn’t fit. He was smirky and a smartass and serious and I’m probably the only one with this problem, but I just didn’t buy it. His character just felt unreal to me and because of this, I couldn’t really continue this book. Every time he showed up on the page I was completely thrown out of the story and it seriously affected my enjoyment of the book.

In the end, I don’t think The Body Electric is a bad book. It’s a classic example of it’s-not-you-it’s-me. Revis really does do interesting things plotwise and with the world building, but the characters made me not enjoy this the way I could have. The main character felt flat to me, but the love interest felt… fake. This is very personal though, so if you’re interested in reading this don’t let me stop you! I haven’t heard anyone else complain about this, so I’m probably just the weirdo again 😛 I’ll still be checking out Revis’ other work, I think, but The Body Electric and I just didn’t click.

~Thank you, Scripturient Books, for the review copy!~

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Celine is 17 years old and from the Netherlands. Quite obviously, she loves books! She has been a reader for as long as she can remember, and she believes she will be a reader forever. Celine is also obsessed with food, and loves singing along to music as loud as possible, dancing and doodling on nearly everything.

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36 Responses to DNF Review: The Body Electric by Beth Revis

  1. Jillian says:

    I’m sorry you didn’t enjoy this book! I have a copy of this book, but I haven’t gotten started to it. I was intrigued by the idea and the plot, but I was left doubtful after reading so many mixed reviews – yours included. The love interest seems like a falling point of the book. I’m sorry you didn’t enjoy it 🙁 I hope this book does well with me. And I hope you read a good book. It’s always disappointing to read a book that simply doesn’t work.
    Jillian recently posted…Top Ten Books I Read in 2014My Profile

  2. I haven’t read her books either, and I have this one too. I just haven’t read it yet, due to the fact that I’m rarely in the mood for sci-fi lately. In fact, I’m kinda on edge and pissed off bc I just started Blood of Olympus, thinking finally my schedule settled down enough for me to read it but NOO why does life do this to me?! It’s sitting on my table …like few chapters in…luckily tomorrow I have off so yayyy. Wow, I really went off topic lol. I’m scared for BOO and how it’s gonna wrap up. were you overall satisfied with the ending?! I’m. so. scared.

  3. Melanie says:

    Blah, it sucks that Revis’ latest didn’t work out for you, girl. I’ll definitely be keeping your thoughts in mind (because we do tend to have similar thoughts) when I go to read this one. It sucks that the love interest didn’t appeal to you. Reminds me of how I felt when everyone loved Josh from Isla and the Happily Ever After. ._.

    Fantastic review, Celine! <33

    • Celine says:

      I really hope you’ll like it better than I did! I did actually like Josh so we don’t always agree… which means that hopefully you like the Body Electric a lot more than I did 😛

      Thank youu <33

  4. Alreem says:

    Lovely review, I wanted to read this book when it first come out but later on i lost interest but maybe I will one day to me the book sound interesting.
    Alreem recently posted…Waiting on Wednesday (07)My Profile

  5. Aw, I’m sorry that it didn’t work out, Celine! I enjoyed this one but the pacing was completely off. I think Revis was trying to achieve too much in such a short amount of time. I know she wanted to have a nice and neat standalone but there are certain things that you can’t sacrifice. I think element also interfered with the love interest and I get why you didn’t connect to his character. He was a mash of everything and there wasn’t enough time to explore the intricacy of his character which was a shame. Fantastic review though, m’dear! <3
    Jess @My Reading Dress recently posted…Let Me Overwhelm You With TagsMy Profile

    • Celine says:

      I definitely agree with you on that! The pacing was off so the book felt slightly messy to me. I appreciate what Revis was trying to do but it just didn’t really work for me 🙁

      Thank you, Jess <33

  6. Sorry it didn’t work for you! Hope I have better luck when I get to this one. 🙂
    Bieke @ Istyria book blog recently posted…Waiting on Wednesday #73: Carry On by Rainbow RowellMy Profile

  7. Christy says:

    I’m sorry you didn’t enjoy this one more! I hate when the characters don’t feel real, that ruins a book for me. I read Across the Universe by this author and I wasn’t too crazy about it so I’ll probably just skip this one.
    Christy recently posted…10 Books We’d Love For ChristmasMy Profile

  8. Kyra says:

    Fantastic review, Celine! I have this to review, so I hope I enjoy it! It’s such a pity when the characters feel flat or fake! 🙁
    Kyra recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday #22 – Top Ten Books I Read in 2014My Profile

  9. Amber Elise says:

    Sorry you didn’t like this one Celine! I didn’t mind it, but I do agree with the romance not clicking. I felt like 50 First Dates in which he was just pushing her to love him. :/

    There are always better books!
    Amber Elise recently posted…[Meme]Waiting on Wednesday [#53]My Profile

  10. Too bad on this one Celine! I’ve been DNFing a lot more lately it seems like, I’m not sure what my problem is. A love interest not feeling genuine or real would be an issue for me as well though. I love a cocky smartass as much as the next girl, but he needs to be believable. I hope whatever you pick up next blows you away!
    Jenny @ Supernatural Snark recently posted…Waiting on Wednesday: AsaMy Profile

    • Celine says:

      Yeah, I also find myself DNF’ing more than I did before! But sometimes I’m in a bit of a slump and nothing can really hold my attention…

      Thank you, Jenny <33

  11. Sorry this didn’t work out for you. I think I can do without the romance if its as uninteresting as this one seems to have.
    Joy // Joyousreads recently posted…[471]: Mrs. Poe by Lynn CullenMy Profile

  12. I’ve only read Across the Universe and I liked it… at the time. Not enough to continue the series I guess. This isn’t my usual read and I’m glad I skipped it because the romance is EVERYTHING to me!
    Nereyda @Mostly YA Book Obsessed recently posted…Waiting On Wednesday (134)!My Profile

  13. Aw, I am sorry that this one didn’t work out for you. But you did a wonderful job explaining why! I have been on the fence about this one for a long time (sadly, I have seen similar reviews!) but there are things that intrigue me enough to give it a chance, just not right now. I’ll add this to the “maybe someday” list. Great review, hope the next book works out better for you 🙂
    Shannon @ It Starts At Midnight recently posted…Waiting on Wednesday: The Edge of Forever by Melissa E. HurstMy Profile

  14. I do want to try this one, mostly for the cover, and partly because I’ve never read Beth Revis either and she does seem quite famous! I NEED TO TRY IT. But eh, the love interest sounds really off-putting. Like he’s supposed to be the “perfect” blend of all things awesome-boyfriend-material, or something??? Not impressed.
    Cait @ Paper Fury recently posted…10 Books Of 2014 I Must Flail Copiously AboutMy Profile

    • Celine says:

      Mwahaha, the cover was also what drew me in *coughs* It is very prettiful. And yeah, the love interest was really what put me off 🙁 He felt like he was supposed to be ‘perfect’ but he really just wasn’t, haha.

  15. Aw, sorry it didn’t work for you but thanks for explaining exactly WHY it didn’t. And I get it, if I can’t connect with the characters, then I lose interest very quickly. I have to feel something for them and believe in them. That fake feeling would be a huge distraction. Better luck with the next book.
    Trish @ Between My Lines recently posted…Book Review: Beautiful Day by Elin HilderbrandMy Profile

  16. Really fascinating thoughts Celine, I’m actually interested in seeing what made the character and love interest flat for you. It sounds like they were very one-dimensional and you couldn’t connect to them in any way. Great review lovely! I’ve heard so many mixed things about this it’s going on the back burner for now.
    Jeann @ Happy Indulgence recently posted…Contemporary YA Reviews #4 – Flirty Dancing by Jenny McLachlan & Red at Night by Katie McGarryMy Profile

  17. So sad to see that you didn’t like it. To be honest with you, I’m actually wary of this one too and I haven’t even read it yet. I loved the author’s previous work, but this particular book just didn’t stand out to me at all. I can totally understand the feeling of being exhausted just from the very fact that a character appears… it’s like the scene is going so well and oops! Boring-Love-Inerest appears and then you feel drained of your energy. You’re right that there are times it’s not really the book’s fault… it’s just they don’t call out to us at all, and the fact that they don’t makes it an unpleasant experience. Hope your next read is better, Celine!
    Faye le Potato recently posted…ARC Review: Last Will and Testament by Dahlia AdlerMy Profile

  18. This one looked good and I was sad I didn’t request it, so thanks for making me feel better.

    The world and the android thing sounds so cool, but characters are the most important! There are a lot of love interests like you described him. I understand what you mean when you say he felt fake and I’ve felt that way before too. Though I couldn’t say exactly what it was, the character didn’t come off as a real person, but a collection of mushed up traits. Nice review!
    Molly Mortensen recently posted…Demons at Deadnight by A&E KirkMy Profile

  19. Kelly says:

    I read this one not too long ago too and the love interest was horrible to be honest. He was wooden and just ‘there’, not much of a personality at all and the romance was pretty much non existent. The first half WAS pretty slow, I don’t blame you for not being able to finish it. But it did pick up from around 70% onwards and the storyline starts to have a purpose. But the first hard is terribly slow and confusing sadly. I enjoyed this far more than Across The Universe though.
    Awesome review poppet <3
    Kelly recently posted…The Bookish Best Of… Books That Surprised Us in 2014My Profile

  20. Benish Khan says:

    I was actually forward to reading this book, the cover and premise sound so interesting. I’m sad it sucked for you, but thank you for the honest review 🙂
    Benish Khan recently posted…Only The Good Die Young ♥ ReviewMy Profile

  21. Valerie says:

    Aww I’m sorry you didn’t like it Celine! Personally I don’t think I would like this book either, because a character as a blank slate probably won’t stick with me either. Kind of glad I ended up not requesting this from NG.
    Valerie recently posted…Stacking the Shelves #16My Profile

  22. Lyn Kaye says:

    Oh, lovely. An iffy romance will cause me to drop a book so fast. Everyone is raving about this pick, but I might have to hold off until I certainly feel more confident about it.
    The android complex draws me in, so I have this feeling of riding the fence, yet again.
    Lyn Kaye recently posted…Book Review: StrangerMy Profile

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