Monday, December 10, 2012

Review: What's Left of Me by Kat Zhang

Book Description via Goodreads:

Hardcover, 343 pages
September 18, 2012, HarperCollins

I should not exist. But I do.

Eva and Addie started out the same way as everyone else—two souls woven together in one body, taking turns controlling their movements as they learned how to walk, how to sing, how to dance. But as they grew, so did the worried whispers. Why aren’t they settling? Why isn’t one of them fading? The doctors ran tests, the neighbors shied away, and their parents begged for more time. Finally Addie was pronounced healthy and Eva was declared gone. Except, she wasn’t . . .

For the past three years, Eva has clung to the remnants of her life. Only Addie knows she’s still there, trapped inside their body. Then one day, they discover there may be a way for Eva to move again. The risks are unimaginable-hybrids are considered a threat to society, so if they are caught, Addie and Eva will be locked away with the others. And yet . . . for a chance to smile, to twirl, to speak, Eva will do anything.

Source: Christine & Harper Collins (Thank you!!)

My Thoughts:

Addie was the dominant soul and Eva was the recessive one. Their lives were tied together but they were meant to be apart. I loved the whole concept of dual souls. It presented a strong connection and a complicated relationship between the twin souls. As children, they have leaned on one another, lived together as two parts of a whole. Inseparable until the moment that one of them fades into the background. Their relationship was complex and fascinating. It wasn’t all sunshine. There were ‘can’t leave with her, can’t leave without her’ moments, too.

I have to admit that I’m not a big fan of Addie. True, she still talked to Eva and acknowledged her twin soul’s presence but she was too hesitant to help Eva. I understand that all she wanted was for them – mostly for her – to live a normal life just like everybody else but it seemed to me that she was the selfish sort. Although Addie was not all bad. She cared for Eva, too.

Eva was supposed to fade but somehow she held on to what little what left of her life. Unable to control her own body, she was paralyzed, imprisoned inside her own flesh. She could only see and hear through Addie. She was considerate, kind-hearted, patient and brave in so many ways that I couldn’t help but love her. My heart broke a hundred times and I shed a bucket of tears along with her. Losing control and co-existing with Addie was difficult. But when hybrids start revealing themselves to Addie, things get even more complicated.

One of my favorite characters ever is Ryan, Devon’s twin soul. He had a gentleness and risky way of being sweet and helpful. It was admirable how much he could risk making sure that Eva was safe. His relationship with Eva was a sweet one. He was there to hold her and when she couldn’t move. He was there to talk to her when she couldn’t speak a word. That kind of patience is hard to find. But at the same time, having an almost-relationship between two hybrids was complicated. They had to consider that they were not always alone and they could only do as much as their twin souls allowed them.

I found a renewed fear of scary doctors in this novel. Hybrids were sent to various institutions that aim to correct them. There are surveillances, tests and operations that they went through. It was terrifying. It was the kind of thing you wouldn’t want to happen to you. Ever. I couldn’t bear the idea of being ‘corrected’ when in their hearts, the hybrids believed that there was nothing wrong with them in the first place. I sat at the edge of my seat while I read about their time in the clinic.

Although the ending was not what I expected it to be, I was content with it. I will be on the lookout for the sequel! Original, heartbreakingly good, and well-written, What’s Left of Me is a breath of fresh air in the YA science fiction field. Fans of Delirium and Pandemonium will like this. I strongly recommend this to readers of YA sci-fi.


4.5 Cupids = Obsessive book love. 
Almost made it as one of my favorites! I strongly recommend this!


  1. Great review. I so agree that the whole concept of two souls in one body is so intriguing. I loved this and can't wait for book 2.

  2. I can't wait to get this one, especially when you Tweeted that it was a good read! Nicole has a copy, but I'm supposed to wait until the Kris Kringle is over since I put it on my list. :P The concept of having souls battling for dominance is interesting, especially if we apply the theories of Aristotle and all the other philosophers who are all about the essence of the soul and the body. :)

  3. I always find the plot interesting and unique. Love your review on this :D Nice.


  4. I just put my review on Kindle and it began with the same words you used.. Original and well written...that has to = good book!

  5. Oh I disliked Addie too. She annoyed me so much! Eva deserved better than how Addie was treating her, but I do understand how hard it was to have two souls sharing one body and how the girls were trying desperately to be their own person. Still, great review!

  6. This one sounds interesting and creepy at the same time.

  7. I really enjoyed this book too! The premise was so intriguing and the idea of a recessive and dominant soul in one body is absolutely amazing. I can't wait for the sequel ;)

    Awesome review, Precious ♥ so glad you enjoyed it!

  8. GREETINGS, EARTHLING!! While I can only stay in this existence finite for a while (gotta run back to the Heavenly, ElysianFields soon), take anything and everything you wanna from our wonderfull, plethora-of-thot to write the next, great masterpeace -if- I can but kiss your gorgeous, adorable feets and/or cohesively cuddle withe greatest, ex-mortal-girly-ever to arrive in Seventh Heaven!! Think about it. Do it! Get back with me Upstairs, k? God bless you, doll: pleasure-beyond-measure is waiting in the Great Beyond for you and eye. Love you proFUSEly, girl. PS: the musical term MORENDO means ‘dying-away in tone-and-time’. How very apropos for U.S. …

  9. This story sounds amazing! How have I not heard of it? I will be picking myself up a copy ASAP. Thank you for sharing your thoughts :)