Bah! I'm not impressed at all with this book! Certainly don't give me an ending that is just a big question when the book wasn't good enough in the first place to make me want to read a sequel.
This novel has lots of good concepts in it that just aren't delivered in an interesting way. The opening is mysterious and has you wondering whether the main character is alive or dead. Is this the afterlife or is this normal reality? Unfortunately, this is not a question that's ever answered. Then you've got the city set up into districts named after the zodiac. However, there's no actual correlation to the zodiac, so it's kind of a useless setup. You've also got some interesting concepts presented here in a Dickens-esque setting: the negative effects of greed, the detriments of rising in fame, the joy in helping the less fortunate, and a dystopian society based on strict capitalism at its worst. However, none of this really makes for an interesting whole. Ooo! There's a prophecy and these kids might be "the ones". Who cares? I don't. Especially, when there's absolutely no payoff at the end of the novel.
I was really struck with the idea that this is a book with adult concepts that has tried to market itself as a young adult novel by making the 2 main protagonists be 12-year-olds. However, these 12-year-olds act more like adults than any 12-year-olds I've ever known (or any 12-year-old I've been). Granted, there have been many books with adult concepts that have worked well in the young adult arena, but I don't think this is one of them. If, as an adult, I found the storyline to be boring, I'm not imagining that the younger generation would find it riveting in the least. I was sooo glad to be finished with this novel. However, I'm sure there will be others who will like it.
So what's the message of this book? Capitalism is a beast; escape it if possible. While, at heart, I lean more toward socialism than capitalism, this book still did nothing for me. Sorry.Note: While I critique both purchased and free books in the same way, I'm legally obligated to tell you I received this book free through the Amazon Vine program in return for my review. Blah blah blah.