Genre: Young Adult
*Slight spoilers in the 5th paragraph
Slated by Teri Terry is described as a psychological thriller. The story is set in a dystopian London in the near future around 2059 or so. In this world, when a person under the age of sixteen commits a crime, the government has him or her taken away to be slated. Being slated is where the person’s memory and personality are wiped blank, and he or she is given a second chance with a clean slate. Besides having memory and personality taken away, everyone who is slated is required to wear a device known as a Levo, which monitors the person’s emotions. The levels range from 1 to 10, 10 being overjoyed and 1 being extremely angry or miserable. If a person were to go below 3, there are consequences for not being able to control his or her emotions.
The protagonist is a sixteen year old girl named Kyla who has been slated. Even though she has no memory of her past, she is different from the others who have had their memory erased because of her intense nightmares and her ability to observe things around her. She notices that criminals are not the only people disappearing. Innocent people are being taken away for no real reason. She wants to ask questions about the disappearances, but she knows that if she wants to continue to live with her new family, she must play by the government’s rules.
Terry brings up some appealing ideas about what to do with young people who have committed a crime or who need a fresh start to try again. The concept of the story is interesting, and it had a lot of potential; however, it seems to fall short on what it was attempting to accomplish. Slated is considered to be a thriller, but it doesn’t live up to the genre. Of course, there are a few moments of suspense, but they don’t make up for the lack of thrills in the story.
The plot moves slowly and tends to focus on Kyla being placed with her new family during the first half of the book with many dull conversations. The last twenty some pages are full of excitement, and the story would have been better if the book was more focused on the action of the plot. It seems the action was placed in such a way to make readers buy the next book to find out what happens, and hopefully, it explains more about the plot, the government, and the terrorists. This book felt as if it was only setting up the plot for the second book and that’s where the real action and story will begin.
Kyla, as a character, is monotone and can be boring. She has nightmares that she believes are memories, but it’s obvious what they are intended to be. Kyla also seems a bit fickle when it comes to her decisions. Throughout the book, she wants to know who she used to be, and when she is presented with an opportunity to find out more, she changes her mind. Another example would be when she is trying to stop Ben, her love interest, from doing something dangerous and then decides to help him do it better. Ben and Kyla’s relationship seems forced so that the plot can move along for the second half of the book. During this part, her motivation to worry about Ben and to do whatever she can for him doesn’t completely make sense. There was little connection between the two characters besides that she liked the way he looked and that she felt as if she knew him from another time.
I most likely will not be reading the next book Fractured because Slated didn’t capture my interest enough to find out what happens next. This book had so much potential, and it’s disappointing that it fell flat for me. I would not recommend this book, but there are plenty of people who have enjoyed the book, so it’s best to do some research to see if you would like it as well.
My Rating: ★