Wildcard. Marie Lu. Science Fiction/Young adult/Fantasy. 2018. 352 pages. 3 stars.
He was once the hand that pulled me up. Now I have to be his.
I received an Advanced Reader’s Copy to participate in a blog tour.
Emika Chen barely made it out of the Warcross Championships alive. Now that she knows the truth behind Hideo’s new NeuroLink algorithm, she can no longer trust the one person she’s always looked up to, who she once thought was on her side.
Determined to put a stop to Hideo’s grim plans, Emika and the Phoenix Riders band together, only to find a new threat lurking on the neon-lit streets of Tokyo. Someone’s put a bounty on Emika’s head, and her sole chance for survival lies with Zero and the Blackcoats, his ruthless crew. But Emika soon learns that Zero isn’t all that he seems–and his protection comes at a price.
Caught in a web of betrayal, with the future of free will at risk, just how far will Emika go to take down the man she loves?
And that’s when I realized that, at the end, we’d all wish for the same thing.
Just a little more time.
Wildcard is one of the most anticipated releases of the latter half of 2018 and I was lucky enough not only to have been chosen to participate in a blog tour, but also to have been gifted an ARC copy for myself! (Huge thank you to Raffy @ The Royal Polar Bear Reads, I am amazed by your kindness and generosity.)
I loved Warcross. I was in love with it because of the bounty-hunter trope. I liked reading about Emika hunting down someone. It was what made me give book 1 a high rating. I didn’t know what to expect with Wildcard, but I have to admit that it left me torn with how to rate and review it.
Firstly, the entire nature of the second book was unfamiliar to me. It dealt with artificial intelligence and the entire shebang. The only AI book I’ve read is Illuminae, thus my knowledge and interest in the technological theme is very… limited. Not to say that I didn’t enjoy Wildcard, I just ended up skimming a heck of a lot of pages due to the lengthy descriptions that failed to capture my attention.
Secondly, I was very disconnected from the characters. Unlike Warcross, a lot of characters were no longer given equal time in the spotlight and were put in the sidelines instead. Granted, this is the story of Hideo, Emika, and Zero, but I wanted more of Asher, Roshan, and gang. It’s great that they played the role of caring friends, but I was hoping there was more to their respective roles than just popping up to check on Emika.
Despite some aforementioned issues above, I did quite enjoy parts of the book! For instance, how Marie Lu dealt with Emika’s relationship with Hideo and Zero. It felt balanced given the moral weight of the entire story. I liked that. I also loved that plot twist. I really was not expecting it and got goosebumps all over!
All in all, I’m glad to have read this duology and to see it wrap up nicely. I would give it a 3-star rating! Not that great, but not entirely bad either.
Now it’s time for me to pass my Wildcard copy to my blogging partner, Kyra!
Marie Lu is the author of the highly anticipated Warcross, the #1 New York Times bestselling series The Young Elites, and the blockbuster bestselling Legend Series. Now a full-time writer, she spends her spare time reading, drawing, playing games, and getting stuck in traffic. She is currently living in Los Angeles, California with her husband, one Chihuahua mix, and one Pembroke Welsh corgi.