Review: The Rules (Project Paper Doll #1) by Stacey Kade

The Rules (Project Paper Doll, #1)The Rules (Project Paper Doll #1) by Stacey Kade

Publication Date: April 23, 2013
Page Count: 416
Format: ebook
Published by: Disney-Hyperion
Source: eARC provided by publisher

Synopsis From Goodreads:

1. Never trust anyone.

2. Remember they are always searching.

3. Don’t get involved.

4. Keep your head down.

5. Don’t fall in love.

Five simple rules. Ariane Tucker has followed them since the night she escaped from the genetics lab where she was created, the result of combining human and extraterrestrial DNA. Ariane’s survival—and that of her adoptive father—depends on her ability to blend in among the full-blooded humans in a small Wisconsin town, to hide in plain sight at her high school from those who seek to recover their lost (and expensive) “project.”

But when a cruel prank at school goes awry, it puts her in the path of Zane Bradshaw, the police chief’s son and someone who sees too much. Someone who really sees her. After years of trying to be invisible, Ariane finds the attention frightening—and utterly intoxicating. Suddenly, nothing is simple anymore, especially not the rules…


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The Rules has an engaging and easy to follow storyline. The main focus is on the characters instead of action or world building. I know I really enjoyed this book because it actually reads more like a contemporary than sci-fi.

The Rules begins in the present with Ariane and her father and their life. Ariane's early years spent in a lab were told through flashbacks. This is how she explained her reasons for why she acts/thinks/feels the way she does in certain situations. Her father has set forth a list of 'rules' that Ariane must obey to remain hidden among regular humans. Ariane follows these rules to stay safe, but that ultimately means she lives a sad and lonely life. At least until a boy comes along and makes her start to break the rules and to question everything in her life up til now.

I liked the protagonist, Ariane, even though she isn't terribly exciting as a character. I still found her to be interesting enough and really likable. Zane turned out to be a lot deeper than his appearance and attitude would suggest. He was really intrigued by Ariane and wanted to take the time to get to know her and figure her out. There was no insta-love between Ariane and Zane. Instead we got a nice slow build up and genuine interest on both sides. I thought they were really cute together and had great chemistry.

The Rules is told in dual POV, alternating between Ariane and Zane. I always enjoy dual POV because I get to experience both characters' thoughts and feelings. I especially enjoyed Zane's perspective because he wasn't at all what I expected.

There was a huge chunk of storyline in the middle that revolved around Ariane and a mean girl at school (who just happened to be one of Zane's oldest and closest friends.) I didn't especially enjoy this part because it was so petty and made the characters seem very immature. I felt most of it was not necessary to move the plot forward, and it was a huge distraction for me. A few twists were revealed throughout the book that took me by surprise. Towards the end of the book, the story takes a very interesting turn. The ending was satisfying and close to perfect.

The Rules is an entertaining book that has a good pace and is easy to read. I really enjoyed the plot and the characters, and I am excited to see where this story goes from here.

My Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
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1 comment:

  1. I don't know about a sci fi that reads more like a contemporary? I mean I love sci fi and I don't always love contemporary, but I'm still very curious about this one! Great review!

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