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Friday, May 25, 2018

#Audiobook #Review: 4 out of 5 stars for Stung by Bethany Wiggins @WiggB @TantorAudio

TITLE: Stung
AUTHOR: Bethany Wiggins
NARRATOR: Nicole Poole
PUBLISHER: Tantor Audio
PUBLICATION DATE: September 12, 2017 (first published 2013)
FORMAT: Unabridged audiobook
LENGTH: 7 hrs and 30 mins
GENRE: Young Adult, Science Fiction/Dystopia
ISBN: 9781541477414
There is no cure for being stung.

Fiona doesn’t remember going to sleep. But when she opens her eyes, she discovers her entire world has been altered—her house is abandoned and broken, and the entire neighborhood is barren and dead. Even stranger is the tattoo on her right hand—a black oval with five marks on either side—that she doesn’t remember getting but somehow knows she must cover at any cost. She’s right.

Those bearing the tattoo have turned into mindless, violent beasts that roam the streets and sewers, preying upon the unbranded while a select few live protected inside a fortress-like wall, their lives devoted to rebuilding society and killing all who bear the mark.

Now Fiona has awakened branded, alone—and on the wrong side of the wall.

MY REVIEW:

I received a complimentary copy of this audiobook for voluntary review consideration.

I love dystopia, and I was really interested to read this one which sounded so creepy. I really enjoyed it, and I am looking forward to reading the sequel!

The main character is Fiona. When she awakens, she's in her bedroom but it doesn't look the same. Everything is dirty and faded. As she wanders around the house, she sees her reflection in the mirror and at first thinks she's looking at her older sister Alyssa and then realizes that it's her own reflection. She is looking at a grown-up version of herself. She went to sleep as a 13-year-old, and she woke up as a 17-year-old and has no memory of anything that has happened during the past four years. She also has a tattoo on her hand (an oval mark with five lines on each side), and something tells her that she must hide the mark.

Fiona hears a man coming up the stairs, and she gets scared and tries to flee. She manages to get away, and she realizes the man chasing her is her twin brother Jonas...only he's changed too. He's not the same. There's something almost feral about him, and that's why Fiona runs. As she gets away, she can hear dogs barking and guns going off and people screaming. Someone grabs her arm and tells her to jump through the manhole into the sewer to escape if she wants to live.

The first couple of chapters are so fast paced and exciting, which totally sucked me into this strange new world. Poor Fiona! This book has been likened to a Sleeping Beauty reimagining, but the only thing that is similar between this story and the fairy tale is that the main character goes to sleep and stays asleep while years pass and that things are very different when she awakens. So, if you are looking for a fairy tale retelling, this isn't it! However, I don't think you'll be disappointed.

I found Fiona's world fascinating, where it's dangerous to be a Level 10 (more on that later) and more dangerous to be a girl. She learns that people started having bad reactions to a vaccination, which causes them to become violent. The tattoo on her hand shows that she was vaccinated and the lines mean that she was given ten doses. She's known as what is called a Level 10, which are highly prized specimens because they are on the brink of "turning" or have already turned and the people that want her (the raiders) will put her in a pen to fight against other infected people. The militia has built a wall around the city, and only the uninfected people are allowed in. They also won't let in anyone with any physical or mental disability, and the girls are married off at 15 years of age. Once you hit that magic 55, you are put to sleep...like an animal.

There is a lot going on with this one, and I really like what I see so far. There's even a bit of a forbidden romance between Fiona and her old neighbour, who now works for the militia. I have already bought the sequel, Cured, and I can't wait to read it!

Nicole Poole brought a great book to the next level with her stellar narration. Her pace was perfect, and I thought her vocalizations were ideally suited to the characters. Here is a sample of the narration:


MY RATING:

4 stars!! It was really good, and you should put it on your TBR if you enjoy mysteries. Thanks again to Tantor Audio for the opportunity to review this audiobook!

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