This Chick Read: Catalyst (The Deception Game #1) by Kristin Smith

Catalyst is set in a world where genetically altered teenagers are the norm and being naturally born is abnormal. When her father dies suddenly, Sienna has to leave school to find a way to make money to support her mother (who has lupus) and her little sister. Uneducated and “normal” Sienna turns to a life of crime. Taking a job to steal from the man who created the technique to genetically alter human life, she is caught by a military group and blackmailed into killing that scientist. Sienna turns to the Fringe, a semi- terrorist group that is helping extract teens from science labs where they are being tested on against their will not wanting to be a killer. Yikes, there’s a lot going on in this world and really very little explanation, which did make my head spin a bit.

Sienna was a hard headed girl who had good intentions. She’s trying to take care of her family but really just wants someone else to take care of her and make this all go away. I mean, what 17 year old wouldn’t want that? She was torn between two men, Zane, the first genetically altered boy/man, and Trey, the leader of the Fringe. Zane, protected since he was a child, seemed very naive. He was friendly, handsome, charming, but somehow innocent. Trey was also friendly, handsome and charming but a little more dangerous. I am a bit tired of the torn between two guys trope and was looking for an angle that hadn’t been taken in previous novels. Unfortunately, other than they were both nice guys instead of one being evil, Sienna’s situation wasn’t unique.

I really wanted to feel more for this book more than I did. The concept was interesting and I love a strong good versus evil theme, but I thought the world building needed more explanation and I didn’t connect with Sienna. That lack of connection hurt the impact of the final moments of the novel. What happened rocked Sienna’s world, but it just didn’t rock mine. Was it horrible? No. I saw a lot of promise in this novel that just wasn’t fulfilled. Can the author deliver on that promise in the next novel? If she gives Sienna more heart, yes. Will I pick up the next novel, Forgotten? Undecided. ❤️❤️❤️

Kudos to the beautiful covert art which grabbed my attention and made me pick up the book. (Although it didn’t scream apocalyptic genetically altered teen novel.)

Catalyst Click this link to purchase! Catalyst (The Deception Game) Copyright 2018 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved


6 thoughts on “This Chick Read: Catalyst (The Deception Game #1) by Kristin Smith

  1. I appreciate the honesty in your review! You have a wonderful website, yet I didn’t find an email address for you. Are you still accepting review requests> I have the ARC for my 3rd novel, which will be released this June. This book ( titled Mourning Dove) was just awarded a place on the Faulkner Society’s list in the novel category. I’d love to tell you more.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Deborah, here is the book description, which will appear on the back cover.

        “Finley fascinated me. I used to study him—the way he walked, the way he talked, the way the air changed around him. He was absolutely something. But here’s what bothers me—Finley’s in heaven, and I don’t know why.”

        Millie Crossan loves Finley, her golden, blue-eyed brother who hung the moon. What she can’t understand, however, is why he died so young.
        Reminiscing on a fractured childhood that began in Minnesota and dovetailed into Memphis, Millie ponders how she and Finley navigated the social mores of their mother’s native land as outsiders in a singing milieu that glittered in the south’s cultural nuance. In this manicured world, little is as it seems, yet Finley is so gifted with charisma and insight that together, brother and sister find their way to belonging.
        But what mysterious elements shape fate into a life? And how can siblings share a history, yet come to such disparate ends?

        Liked by 1 person

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