Review: Altered

Author: Jennifer Rush
Series: Altered #1
Publication Date: January 2, 2013
Publisher: Little, Brown and Co.
Reading Level: Young Adult
Pages: 336 (ARC)
Source: Borrowed
When you can’t trust yourself, who can you believe?

Everything about Anna’s life is a secret. Her father works for the Branch at the helm of its latest project: monitoring and administering treatments to the four genetically altered boys in the lab below their farmhouse. There’s Nick, Cas, Trev . . . and Sam, who’s stolen Anna’s heart. When the Branch decides it’s time to take the boys, Sam stages an escape, killing the agents sent to retrieve them.

Anna is torn between following Sam or staying behind in the safety of her everyday life. But her father pushes her to flee, making Sam promise to keep her away from the Branch, at all costs. There’s just one problem. Sam and the boys don’t remember anything before living in the lab—not even their true identities.

Now on the run, Anna soon discovers that she and Sam are connected in more ways than either of them expected. And if they’re both going to survive, they must piece together the clues of their past before the Branch catches up to them and steals it all away.
~*~Lili's Reflections~*~

Words cannot describe how much I loved this book. Full of originality, action, and unexpected plot twists galore, I am anxiously awaiting the release of this one so I can get a copy of my own. It is a must read for any reader, especially those who love adventure, romance, and mysteries!

Ever since she was a young girl, Anna has known about the four boys that live in her basement--her father's secret lab. Sam, the attractive, stoic, leader that she often meets at night to play chess with and may or may not have a crush on. Nick, the one who despises Anna with a burning passion, though he also feels obligated to protect her. Cas, the lovable childish one that can still kick some serious ass. And there's also Trev, a very endearing brainiac who is Anna's best friend and has an inspirational quote from history for just about anything. All completely different, they function as a single unit with the goal to discover their pasts and the secrets that have been hidden from them by the company that employs Anna's father. When they stage an escape and are forced to take Anna with them, the mystery begins and the five of them race against the clock to uncover the hidden secrets before it's too late. This insane treasure hunt was so creative and original that I can't help but say Rush is emerging as a new must-read author.

I truly loved the characterization in this one. Each character, specifically the boys, differed immensely from the next, but somehow manage to blend together beautifully to form a wicked team. I never got them mixed up and they each continuously stayed true to their distinct, unique personalities. Anna, as the only girl among four genetically altered and engineered alpha-males, really held her own for someone who genuinely had no idea what was going on, and I enjoyed reading her thoughts and figuring out my own assumptions from the plot clues I gleaned through her. Cas was able to add a slight bit of humor to an otherwise serious novel which I really enjoyed as well. Out of all the boys, he was the most endearing, though I genuinely enjoyed them all.

There is also a bit of romance in this one. It's incredibly rocky. It falls prey to YA cliches in the sense that they can kiss and then fight, then suddenly have a huge revelation and make up. But at the same time, it is slow moving and the concept of love was never actually mentioned, thus it leads me to believe that the romance will further blossom in book two. I enjoyed the romance because it's hard to form such deep connections when on the run and you can see the characters desire to fight it, but in the end, the heart wants what the heart wants. It doesn't subtract from the serious plot of hunting for clues, which is amazing as well.

This is one read that can be finished in a single sitting because the plot twists are so unexpected. My heart was beating fast by the time I turned the final page. Full of action sequences, guns, and the characters running for their lives, your heart strings will be pulled every which way in this one due to the adrenaline and the heartache that you will experience as a reader. As satisfied as the ending was, I need book two to saturate my hunger as soon as possible. This one definitely comes in high recommendation because it'll take you on the journey of a lifetime.

 5 stars



  1. So glad you liked this one! I definitely need to buy it now (when it comes out of course :D). Unexpected plot twists and great characters -- I'm there. Great review!!

  2. I loved this book, too! My review will be coming out next week!!!! So glad you enjoyed it.

  3. Fabulous review!! I've had my eye on this book for a few weeks and I'm so thrilled to see it getting such rave reviews! It sounds like the perfect book for me and I can't wait to read it! :)

  4. I'm literally DYING for this book. I'm so insanely glad you liked it because it makes me want it soooo much more. I'll be getting it as soon as it comes out. Love great plot twists :D Awesome review, Lili!

  5. Wow! Great review! I've been eying this one up for a while, I guess it's time I give it a try! Thanks for the great review~! :-)