The 100 by Kass Morgan
Summary : Original. Quick Read. Disappointing. Some-what enjoyable.
The premise for The Hundred, Book 1 is an intriguing one, unfortunately enthusiasm plummets midway, sheer will power is required to get through to the end where instead of recapturing interest, one is left frustrated and disgruntled.
The Cataclysm rendered Earth uninhabitable. A fraction of the human population was evaluated onto a space ship equip to sustain human life for what was hopped to be long enough to ensure the Earth’s return to a livable state. Fast-forward 300yrs, the ships oxygen supply/resources are dwindling and the human race dying. With no alternative in sight, and without consulting the juvenile detainees, government leaders secretly launch 100 of them to the once homeland in hopes that they will be the start of a safe return to Earth.
Once there, the frightened and confused delinquents must fend for themselves in a frightening and wondrous world they have only ever read about and glimpsed from a distance.
There is a huge disconnect between the official synopsis, my expectations, and what I read. The synopsis should have read more like a romance novel with a dystopian backdrop. Much of the disconnect is derived from a lack of world building, gaping holes in storyline, and dense characters. There are too many things left unexplained and too many things that do not add up.
What lead up to the Cataclysm?
Who got to evacuate? Did everyone get on the ship?
How was the population distributed into the caste system within the ship?
Why were the 100 not prepared at all if the entire human race depended on them?
Morgan took on a huge feat with this book as it is told from the POV of four different characters. Wells Jaha, the protégée son of the Chancellor who is deeply in love with Clarke, the intelligent daughter of the deceased scientists, Glass the warmhearted daughter of a snobby socialite, and Bellamy the resident bad boy with a heart of gold who will do anything to protect his sister. He is my favorite by far.
Bellamy can be overbearing but he has some depth and carries less annoying emotional turmoil than the rest. Wells is in love with Clarke. I get it, so does everyone else. His love becomes his downfall and makes him rather pathetic. In a world where everything is falling apart and the human race is at stake, it would make more sense that he be more focused on making up for his part in the ship’s demise. Clarke, while proactive, is stubborn and fickle. The developing love triangle appeared forced. Glass is disheveled, I kept waiting to see when she would join the rest of the 100, but that never happened. I did not understand her role in the storyline other than to share some of the society’s workings. While the flashbacks and jumping back and forth added to some of the world building, it made it difficult to learn more about the character of these teenagers.
Although I was looking forward to this book, I grew weary and apprehensive to the point of disinterest. I have a strong preference for books that jump into action and weave world building in, however I recognize that some books do not allow for that. This is one of them. Morgan’s characters are likable, but they could have used more distinguishing features, and could have provided more for the audience to connect to. Overall it is an easy and quick read, that will leave you wondering, is that it?
** This book was received from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. **