Today is my stop on the TBR & Beyond Tours for The Ones We’re Meant to Find by Joan He.
Special thanks to Netgalley and Roaring Brook Press for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review!
Be sure to click on the banner below to check out the rest of the amazing bloggers on tour!
Goodreads: The Ones We’re Meant to Find
Publisher: Roaring Brook Press
Publication Date: 04 May 2021
Genre: Young Adult Science Fiction/Climate Fiction
One of the most twisty, surprising, engaging page-turner YAs you’ll read this year—We Were Liars with sci-fi scope, Lost with a satisfying resolution.
Cee awoke on an abandoned island three years ago. With no idea of how she was marooned, she only has a rickety house, an old android, and a single memory: she has a sister, and Cee needs to find her.
STEM prodigy Kasey wants escape from the science and home she once trusted. The eco-city—Earth’s last unpolluted place—is meant to be sanctuary for those commited to planetary protection, but it’s populated by people willing to do anything for refuge, even lie. Now, she’ll have to decide if she’s ready to use science to help humanity, even though it failed the people who mattered most.
Joan He was born and raised in Philadelphia but still will, on occasion, lose her way. At a young age, she received classical instruction in oil painting before discovering that storytelling was her favorite form of expression. She studied Psychology and East Asian Languages and Cultures at the University of Pennsylvania and currently writes from a desk overlooking the Delaware River. Descendant of the Crane is her debut young adult fantasy.
TL;DR: I’m truly at a loss for words as to how to describe the magnificence and beauty of this book. This was quite simply a masterpiece and proves what an incredible talent Joan He is. The brilliance of He’s imagination and ability to beautifully craft such a gripping climate science-fiction mystery with raw and realistically flawed characters is astounding. I became so invested in this story that it hurt (and yes, I did cry). Not only would I highly recommend this, even to those who struggle with sci-fi, but I’d also recommend going into it knowing as little as possible—rest assured the slowly unfurling story full of tension, mystery and heartache is so very worth it!
Content Warning: terminal illness, suicide, violence (including choking), death, death of parent (off page), vomiting, large scale natural disasters and mass casualties, some gore
I haven’t been able to stop thinking about this since I finished it and my mind is still churning with the jaw-dropping twists and turns and the way He brilliantly weaves together so many elements of this story. I don’t know how else to say it, but no element in this book was wasteful as He managed to bring everything back around. I’m sure you can tell by now but I’m struggling to formulate coherent thoughts because my mind is just blown away! 🤯 I do feel like there’s not much that can be said without spoiling it but I’ll do my best to share my thoughts!
This story unfolds at a leisurely pace—there’s absolutely no rush in the telling and it allows you to completely immerse yourself in this vivid futuristic world. He paints a richly mysterious atmosphere that slowly and completely sucks you in. The world-building is quite extensive and I was pleasantly surprised by the futuristic science and technology in this. I tend to get easily overwhelmed when sci-fi gets overly descriptive about technical science but that didn’t happen here as He’s enchanting writing makes it easy to understand and picture. The mystery of Celia’s disappearance had me constantly questioning everything and everyone and it’s safe to say that I was hanging onto the edge of my seat in nervous anticipation and shock the whole way through!
I don’t read a lot of climate fiction so this was another unique element that added even more layers to the story. I have to say that it was unsettling only because it wasn’t hard to imagine a world where humans face the consequences of our past (current) actions at such a magnitude as its described in this book. In this future, the earth is literally killing humans and we only have ourselves to blame. 🤷🏻♀️
TOWMTF is told from two POVs and has a bit of a convoluted timeline. Thankfully, I was able to easily grasp the difference but that’s something to keep in mind if you’re confused—things will eventually clear up and when it all clicks into place the ‘a-ha!’ moment will feel so good! Even without the alternating first-person and third-person views to distinguish chapters, Celia and Kasey have such distinctive personalities and voices that it’s easy to picture them individually come to life. Both sisters are realistically flawed and relatable to some extent and though are wildly different from each other the love and devotion they have for one another is unquestionable. Oh, my heart. MY HEART! Joan He has absolutely wrecked it with the connections in this story! 😭 While I related to Celia’s chapters more, I highly appreciated Kasey’s character. She’s not your typical YA female lead and while I didn’t come to “love” her, this story would not be what it is without her being who she is, and I loved how she was unapologetically so.
Overall, the blurb definitely doesn’t lie when it says that this is one of the most twisty, surprising, engaging page-turners that you will read. This book defied any expectations that I might’ve had and it stunned me with every page I turned until the very bitter end. I wasn’t ready for the emotional journey this took me on but my gosh is it worth it! There’s nothing else for me to say except do yourself a favour and pick up this book and prepare to have your mind blown and your heart in pieces!
This was my first time making a digital journal spread and it was so much fun! I know it’s not perfect and it actually looks pretty messy but I do think that’s pretty realistic to my IRL journaling so… 😂
Enter the Giveaway (US ONLY) for a chance to win a finished copy of The Ones We’re Meant to Find. This giveaway ends on May 10th!
Have you read The Ones We’re Meant to Find or is it on your TBR?