ARC Review: Damselfly by Jennie Bates Bozic

Title: Damselfly
Author: Jennie Bates Bozic
Pages: 120 (On Kindle)
Genre: YA, dystopian, science fiction, romance
Series? Yes, #1 in Damselfly series
Publisher: Self-published
Publication Date: November 11, 2013

Synopsis from NetGalley: In 2065, the Lilliput Project created Lina – the first six-inch-tall winged girl – as the solution to a worldwide energy and food crisis. Isolated in a compound amidst the forests of Denmark, Lina has grown up aware of only one purpose: learn how to survive in a world filled with hawks, bumblebees, and loneliness. However, on the eve of her sixteenth birthday, she discovers that she’s not the only teenager her size. Six ‘Toms’ were created shortly after Lina, and now her creators need to prove to the world that tiny people are the next logical step in human evolution. In other words, they need to prove that reproduction is possible.

Um. No thanks. Lina’s already fallen in love with a boy she met online named Jack. Only he has no idea that thumbelina1847 could literally fit inside his heart.

When her creators threaten to hurt Jack unless she chooses a husband from among the ‘Toms’, Lina agrees to star in a reality TV series. Once the episodes begin to air, the secret of her size is out. Cut off from any contact with the outside world, Lina assumes Jack is no longer interested. After all, what guy would want to date a girl he can’t even kiss?

Slowly, very slowly, she befriends the six young men who see her as their only ticket to happiness. Perhaps she can make just one guy’s dream of love and companionship come true. But her creators have a few more twists in store for her that she never thought possible.

She’s not the only one playing to the camera.

Thoughts and Rambling

I had read a few reviews for this one before reading it myself, and everyone I talked to enjoyed it, if not loved it. I’m breaking the status quo here by saying that it really wasn’t my favorite! I’m highly apathetic about this one. There were bits that I liked, but ultimately the negative really weighed down and drowned out the positive.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. 
Character Bar

I think this was where I struggled the most. There were eight characters in major play (not to mention all the scientists and everyone else), and it became weighty, and the page time wasn’t balanced at all.

Lina: I did not like Lina at all. She was selfish and whiny, only thinking of herself and how everything would affect her. She didn’t think of Jack, or any of the other Toms before committing to her plans. She acted, and hoped everyone would pick up after her. It was infuriating! And while she realized this in the end, it was far too late to redeem her character. Maybe in the second book she’ll be better…

Jack: I think I liked him the best… because he was the least present. I don’t know – he just didn’t rub me right. Like, if you know that this girl has been lying to you this whole time, why do you volunteer for a procedure with a 95% death rate? It just made no sense to me. And other than that, I didn’t get a real sense of his personality. Their conversations were usually about Lina, and their romance, but I never saw who Jack really was.

The Toms: There were too many of them! It seemed like even the author forgot about them at times. There were the three main ones: Blue, Shrike, and Row. Those should have been the only Toms. The other three were entirely useless, and I frequently forgot their names. Blue was that “I’m quiet and broody” type, but for no reason – nothing about him is explained. Row is a lying bastard. And Shrike is humorous, in a rude way. I liked him the best.
Concept and Plot

Concept: It’s like a dystopian Bachelorette meets Tinkerbell. And not the new Disney fairy version – the old one, wherein good ol’ Tink tried to get Wendy Darling killed. Definitely an interesting concept! It’s just the plot that fell flat for me…

Plot: It was good enough, but there seemed to be too many strings that were left hanging at the end. Like it was too much for Bates to juggle, so she randomly left of bits and pieces.
Writing Style

There wasn’t enough world building for me. Like, why were the Thumbelinas created in the first place? Why does it seem like it’s still the 2013 culture, but set in 2065? What sort of tech has evolved? Why is everyone starving? What the heck is going on??? Last ThoughtsIt was a promising synopsis, but ultimately Damselfly fell a bit flat for me. I might think of looking into the sequel, but as of right now I’m ambivalent. It would be one of those, “I’ll read it when I’ve got nothing else to do,” sort of sequels.

My Final Rating:

Three Stars

Find the book at:

Amazon |  Barnes and Noble | Book Depository | Goodreads

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3 thoughts on “ARC Review: Damselfly by Jennie Bates Bozic

  1. This concept sounded so good, it’s too bad that it fell flat! Whiny MCs and too many characters can be so frustrating, I’ve read some books where I just can’t keep track of all the characters and their names! Great review–I love the galaxy print headers too, they’re so pretty! 🙂

    Alice @ Alice in Readerland

  2. Pingback: October Wrap-Up | The Thousand Lives

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