“You are forever a piece of my story.”
Rating: 4/5 stars
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?
No one is more surprised than me by my 4 star rating, especially after giving Warcross 2.5 stars. I was about to give up on Marie Lu books if I didn’t like this one but a change of plans are now in order. When I first read Warcross I thought of it as The Hunger Games on cyber steroids. And it wasn’t that the book was bad, I just didn’t care because I knew the ending was going to be predictable. However, I knew that at some point I would like to pick up Wildcard just to see how it all ends, and WOW. I’m glad I gave it a second chance. However, I find it interesting because most people who loved Warcross did not care for Wildcard.
MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD FOR WARCROSS
At the end of Warcross we find out Hideo is going to be implementing a new algorithm to his NueroLink, which will essentially rid the world of violence, but also people of their free will in an attempt to find closure on his younger brother’s disappearance. Emika, is devastated that the man she’s looked up to her entire life and grown to have feelings for would do such a thing and sets out to stop him. But Emika also knows Hideo’s younger brother is alive and wants to stop Hideo’s algorithm as much as she does. Switch over to Wildcard and Hideo has already released the algorithm. Criminals are turning themselves in to the police station, and the suicide rate has significantly increased. Emika has until the closing ceremony of the Warcross games to figure out how to stop the algorithm.
Now I promise, I won’t spoil anything from Wildcard, but I will let you know a few things you can expect. For starters, we get so much new information on Zero, and I never in a million years would have guessed it. In fact, Zero’s past defines the plot in a huge way, which is probably why I enjoyed this so much more. The plot basically does a 180 from Warcross and there is significantly less gaming time. So, if that was something you enjoyed know it’s drastically cut back in this book. The Phoenix Riders are back and ready to help Emika save the world. You can also expect ALL the tension between Hideo and Emika, who have a huge difference in opinions on the algorithm and are fighting their feelings. Plus, Zero wants Emika to get closer to Hideo and use their attraction to his advantage of stopping the algorithm, so just double to amount of tension. Last, you can expect the second half of this book to just be insane explosive action because there are so many plot twists. Make sure you clear your schedule because your not going to be able to put the book down.
If I’m being honest though, I wasn’t necessary thrilled about the ending. I’m honestly kind of shocked Marie Lu chose to go that route, like REALLY SHOCKED. It’s just a bad, bad idea. So, it’s every easy for me to justify why this wouldn’t be a five star read for that reason alone.
But all I want to do when I’m angry is stab the deepest wound I can find.
I have to stop him in order to save him. He was once the hand that pulled me up. Now I have to be his.
Maybe I should feel like a hero. But I don’t. Its always easier to destroy than to create.
Lies are told more easily when you don’t see them as lies.
All in all, I’m glad I gave this book a second chance. I think the main reason I really enjoyed this because of how different from Warcross this was, and even though that seems to be the unpopular opinion, I’m glad it worked for me. Maybe I need go back and give The Young Elites a second chance too.
Until next time,