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Other Systems Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
Abby Boyd Lee was a character that completely blew my mind because despite all the suffering she endured and all of the heartache, she still came out on top as a strong independent woman and I have nothing but respect for her. Guizzetti wrote her beautifully and she was a believable and lovable character. In the beginning I couldn't help but be annoyed with how naive she was and how unrealistic her dreams for the future were but I realised that without her naivety the plot would have fallen apart. She dreamt of a better future for herself and made the ultimate sacrifice by leaving her family behind to travel through the stars. Unfortunately for her, not everything was quite as it seemed. She suffered trauma, loss and heartache before she found the space crew that would ultimately become her family.Read more ›
This part of the book was really fantastic. The excitement and wonder coupled with nerves and fear are all mixed into one as Abby steps foot onto the rocket. Just the right amount of information is kept from the reader and so like Abby, you to are stepping forwards with the character into the unknown. What I particularly thought was good was the fact that though the space travellers are physically human; they seem alien as their customs, norms and values are different from Earthlings. The only query I had was of Abby's father; all along he was protective of his children and yet only put up a 2 minute resistance to his children leaving for Kipos. The parting seemed very quick for characters which share such a strong bong.
When on Kipos the land of opportunity seems anything but. All the siblings are separated as Abby is sold as a 'bond' to a family, headed by Dr. Barnett and she soon learns of her purpose; to become a surrogate mother. She is raped and abused until she bears the child and becomes no further use to the family.Read more ›
What I loved about Other Systems was the highly advanced world Elizabeth Guizzetti creates. It is one full of history and full of promise and the result of this is actually a fully rendered 3D world we can actually visualise and understand. Kipos is a planet on the decline; generations after generations are succumbing to a failed reproduction law and are desperate for solutions. You can get sucked in to the entire political situation of Guizzetti's world and it almost serves as a dual storyline alongside Abby's turmoil.
I feel it safe to say that Other Systems is indeed an adult novel and it features many unpleasant scenes and situations that are difficult to read, yet this is not a bad thing! It is the awful point where Abby is raped that you suddenly awaken to the addictiveness this sort of novel produces. You simply have to read more. You want Abby to be OK; you want her to live on and make something of herself; not letting those awful moments define her as a person.
For Abby is such a relatable character and a protagonist whom we learn to love and admire.Read more ›
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)
I really liked the undertones of politics of the populations of Kipos and the idea that a Utopian society might not have great morals. This subplot reminded me very much of The Giver, one of my favorite sci-fi books. Indeed, many aspects of Guizzetti's work gives it a feeling of Dystopian Sci-fi, which is one of my favorite genres and was a real pleasure to discover.
The book is a long one, so strap yourself in for a read. I like long reads, so that wasn't too much of a determent for me, even though I tend to be pretty packed with my reading schedule. There were a few points in the book where a couple of editorial grammar issues took me out, but not because it's not professionally and well written. I just thought the structure could have been more concise in a few spots. The editor in me got picky.
That said, Guizzetti is a very engaging writer. Her characters stick with the reader, her descriptions are beautifully done, and the formatting is really awesome. The chapter headings and interior photos were stunning and gave the book a very sci-fi feel. This is one I picked up for the cover, but the interior matches. I will continue to read Guizzetti's future work and imagine she will soon draw fans to her.
The Kipos colony, at a considerable distance from Earth, has developed a highly controlled society made up of people who consider themselves to be superior beings. They look down on the mutated spacegoers, the Khlorosans, even though they depend on them for trade and off-planet transportation. But the we're-so-perfect Kiposi, despite their obsession with racial purity, also desperately need an influx of DNA to shore up their falling birth rate.
Recruiting original stock from Earth seems like a solution, but the Kiposi are shocked to find that the people of Earth, coping with over-population and economic pressures, don't measure up to Kiposi societal ideals. Still, they skim off the best and brightest, dangling the bait of a chance for education, a good job, a better life. Perhaps they had good intentions at first, but by the time the earthlings arrive, they're automatically second-class citizens at best, indentured servants (we don't call them slaves) with almost no rights.
Abby and her siblings are among those who pass the tests and make the trip. Abby's sister is young enough to qualify for adoption, but Abby herself, a woman of child-bearing age, is seen as breeding stock. It's cultural shock with a vengeance as Abby struggles to get answers and to cope with her situation.
Abby's a strong person, a survivor, who has to adapt to a new world while dealing with physical and emotional trauma. I won't give away details, but it seems to me that the despised Khlorosans are a lot more "human" than the Kiposi. This is an adventure story with plenty of action and suspense, narrow escapes, ominous portents, and in general enough going on to make you keep turning pages. I blame Elizabeth for my staying up far too late reading.
*If you don't want a spoiler-don't continue reading, just buy the book and enjoy it!*
The short blurb is only the beginning of what the story is really about. Abby, the main character, has it pretty rough after she makes it to Kipos. There's a weakness in her character that you pity as one bad thing after another happens to her and she just accepts it as her fate rather than fighting back. It was a bit too dark for my taste. I don't enjoy reading sexually graphic novels, but there was something about the character that kept me wanting to read, just so she wouldn't remain stuck on Kipos forever. You take on a sort of older sibling complex with wanting to protect Abby from what comes next. It's not until she escapes a quarter of the way through and finds the Revelation, that the story really begins to take a turn for the better.
After she is rescued and given a fair chance at a real life, Abby begins to discover who she really is. Through trials and tribulations she is tested, and rather than folding like she did back on Kipos, she begins to stand up for herself and take chances. Her character grows and you finally find something about her to latch onto and root for. Something every written character should have. She grows more confident in herself and begins to take control of her path and where she wants to be. Harden, the Captain of the ship, becomes a sort of father figure to her, and I believe he has a lot to do with the strength she was able to find inside herself. His rough demeanor, yet subtle, loving tendencies showed her that not everyone was a bad guy. Most importantly, not everyone was going to think she was a bad person.
Although I enjoy a stronger heroine in a novel, I rated this story four stars because through her weakness for men and her insecurities, she was able to find herself and become a stronger person. I love when a character can reach their lowest and still be able to come out on top. Her story ends as a happy one and I can easily say that the author did a great job with taking me to places I had never been, nor even dreamed about.
I would say more about this book's story line but as Riversong would say, "spoilers."
All I am at liberty to say is that this book isn't mimicking real life. The book has its own life. The characters and the plot all breath and stirred deep emotion with in my own heart.
I really love reading this book and I hope other equally enjoy it when they get to read it.
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