Blog Book Tour | “Carbon” (Book Two: The Watcher Series) by AJ Eversley

Posted Monday, 2 October, 2017 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

Book Review badge created by Jorie in Canva using photography (Creative Commons Zero).

Acquired Book By: I was selected to be a part of the blog tour for the Watcher series hosted by iRead Book Tours. I have been trying to find a way to make enroads into Dystopian Lit for a number of years, specifically every year I’ve participated in Sci Fi November, whilst outside of the annual event as well. If anything, I have found my attempts of finding Dystopian stories I can sink my teeth into and appreciate to be a bit hit/miss or false starts. When I read about this series – I thought, it’s labelled a ‘clean YA Dystopian series’ and therefore decided to ‘try once more’ and see if I can alight into a world penned in this genre. I received a complimentary copy of CARBON direct from the author AJ Eversley in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

On where WATCHER leaves off and where I hoped CARBON would continue:

Where things get more interesting is what draws Kenzie to Sawyer like a moth to a flame. In one instance towards the latter quarter (or so) of the story, I started to see an insert of familiarity and in some ways a welcome explanation for a film I never could fully understand (the Matrix). Despite all the references I’ve been making – they are only minor references in both concept, idea or execution. As for me, I appreciate Eversley style and approach in telling this story far more than I appreciated the other films. In regards to the Borg, however, those were some of my favourite Next Generation episodes because it was exploring a non-traditional enemy similar to AI which was self-governing and self-evolving without human interference. My favourite episode of course was about Hugh – where Picard helped one Borg name himself and see things from ‘outside’ the collective; thereby giving him a slice of humanity he never felt he could feel. In many ways, I think Kenzie is Hugh in this story – he was set on a course he did not choose for reasons he did not fully accept as being right but followed through because it was his path to walk. It’s a complicated arc of story – of making choices in blinks of time, effecting lives outside your own and trying to sort your way through a quagmire of a future which works against every innate instinct of humanity.

-quoted from my review of WATCHER

As I left WATCHER, I was hoping CARBON would pick up close in a time-frame which would equal the momentum I had read in WATCHER; on that score, I was not disappointed. The hard part for me stepping back into this world was how much everything had ‘changed’ as soon as Sawyer had lost her humanity (she was now a Carbon) and how dearly altered Kenzie had become because in effect, the Kenzie I knew with Sawyer was dead – this was his truer state and his truer nature coming to the surface. It wasn’t easy to read from that angle because Kenzie was such a different person in WATCHER; wells, perhaps not entirely different but different enough not to be easily recognised in CARBON.

I suppose I had hoped somehow the tides would turn round for Sawyer in a way which wouldn’t feel so very oppressively dark and unbearingly brutal from the point of view, she had already lost so much in her young life – to lose more felt almost too much for her to shoulder. I was quite attached to the story within WATCHER but as you will see, as I went into the pages of CARBON, I found myself stepping ‘out’ of the story rather than feeling firmly locked inside it.

I was delayed getting back into the rhythm of the series – I was offline for a fortnight due to personal circumstances wherein I was not reading during that time period. By the time I returnt to the series, I must admit, my experiences whilst I was absent did effect my readings now, as those experiences had a profound effect on me overall. Sometimes despite trying to step outside our literary comfort zones, we find we are not able to make the leap – at least this is true in my case, as CARBON was simply not my cuppa for Sci Fi.

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Blog Book Tour | “Carbon” (Book Two: The Watcher Series) by AJ EversleyCarbon
Source: Author via iRead Book Tours

Sawyer has lost everything. Her family, the man she loves...her humanity. No longer a Watcher, Sawyer must now begin a journey to understand her new identity. Carbon.

With no where left to call home, and no one left to guide her, Sawyer must rely on the help of a stranger to learn who she really is now, and how to use it to her advantage. In a world where nothing is as it seems, and who to trust is a thin line between friend and foe, Sawyer will turn to the stars that have shaped her destiny long before she even knew she had one. And the man who fate has sent her.

Book two in this epic series, Carbon will answer questions you didn't even know you had. And strangers will become the only ones who can help her. Join Sawyer as the journey to save humanity continues.

Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 978-1548927189

on 26th September, 2017

Pages: 312

The Watcher Series:

Watcher by AJ EversleyCarbon by AJ Eversley

Converse via: #WatcherSeries, #Dystopian + #CleanReads + #YALit

About AJ Eversley

AJ Eversley

AJ Eversley is the author of the WATCHER series. A true north Canadian girl, AJ currently lives in Central Alberta with her husband and dog. When she’s not writing, she can be found binge watching Harry Potter, quoting various movies in every day conversation, and eating copious amounts of candy.

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My Review of carbon:

The deepest echo is of an internal quaking of loss and the desolation of anguish which follows the pain – such as is how you feel enveloped into Sawyer’s current state of mind. She’s lost more than most – not only mates she felt as close to as brothers and one of whom she was smitten with on a different level entirely – but she’s lost part of her humanness too. She’s no longer a mere ‘Watcher’ now; in order to survive she had to become part ‘Carbon’ thus blurring the lines between friend, foe and nemesis. She’s the same ‘girl’ but she’s altered at the same time – an increase of potential with a near immortal knack for healing, she is more than ‘she was’ but still perceived things the same way she did before she was ‘saved’. Her mind was a swirling hive of thoughts – drifting through various ways to exact revenge whilst trying to sort out why she was currently in close quarters of ‘Max’ of whom she had the least interest in getting to know further. She had reached the apex of tolerance and of ‘carrying on’ for the sake of survival. She’s beyond seeing the point to the hours she had put into keeping alive and now with the losses stacked higher than she had patience, Sawyer found herself once again ‘adrift’.

She’s in-between once again – different setting and different circumstances, but she’s between where she wants to be and what she wants to do. Trapped on all sides by water as she travels towards a destination she holds will yield knowledge about how to go past where she is currently, Sawyer finds herself vexed by everything around her – from the monotony of the crew’s jobs to idle hours spent roaming the ocean towards a particular node of land. She barely understands her body now – as it’s unique to herself but it’s how she feels inside her skin that has altered a bit more than she gave herself credit to recognise. She was purposefully trying to be ‘less Carbon, more Human’ with each passing day – yet she couldn’t shake the fact she was more ‘Carbon than Human’.

Max was the type of bloke who could rankle anyone’s last nerve simply by being in their presence – you cannot decide whether he has a sinister nature about him or genuine concern for Sawyer’s health and welfare; time will tell for sure. The way the two interact with each other, you’d think they were sworn enemies who have a slight regard for the other but only ‘slight’. Having Chevy (Sawyer’s dog) in the mix is light fodder to the overwhelming angst peeling off her soul – as Chevy breaks into scene with a lightness Sawyer rarely feels nor is inclined to acknowledge.

As Kenzie comes back into the story-line – I barely recognised him because he’s more than he was before in ‘Watcher’. Or rather, he’s more his true nature than the one he was repressed to release into view the last night I met him. In this installment, he’s acting without remorse, inflicting harm and torture to those who try to go against his questioning and has no qualms about taking a life if it leads him to a secret he was never meant to uncover. He’s beyond cold-hearted in this section of the story – something tells me, the clue to how he’s ‘changed’ might lie in what he doesn’t remember, as he has a loss of memory which could point towards why it feels like there are two halves to his personality spilt between the first novel and the second.

The undertone has always had a menacing darkness flickering into the narrative – of how bad things can become when the wrong person assumes law and order. Kenzie and all the Carbons are controlled by a man whose thirst for power has no limits and the main delusion is how he’s willing to convince people he’s right and their wrong to want to keep their humanity intact is what is most disturbing of all. The further you dive into the series, the darker everything becomes lit and the more depressing the future feels for Sawyer.

Max makes a chivalrous move which gives Sawyer a different perspective about his nature – she was most surprised he would put his life on the line for her or the crew and when she realised the full extent of his actions, she was fuming mad! Sawyer is not one who backs down from expressing her emotions – she’s an emotional wreck at times but for the most part, she lives with her emotions on the surface of her being. She doesn’t like to admit fault or weakness within herself but she cannot completely erase the fact she is impulsive.

Being fully Carbon annoys Sawyer because she is not just ‘one of the enemy’ she has to admit she is being ‘controlled’ and/or ‘manipulated’ without her consent. Each Carbon has a microchip which acts as a conduit of control – it is this chip she’s trying to chase down a way to remove without terminating her life. A lot of the overlays from ‘Watcher’ and the key takeaways of how society can fall into darker corners of progress are continuing in ‘Carbon’. Most especially how violence is a measure of confined control – there isn’t room for mistakes or misunderstandings; in this world, one mistake could cost you everything and more!

I admit, I was able tuck into ‘Watcher’ easier than I was ‘Carbon’ – I think because this world is so very consuming and ‘darker’ than I normally read, it felt a bit oppressive to read after spending a fortnight dealing with IRL tribulations. I missed having the chance to read this within hours of finishing ‘Watcher’ and as a result, I found myself bucking at my return; perhaps those two weeks changed me more than I realised because somehow I felt disconnected from this world – disconnected in a way where I wasn’t entirely sure I felt as akin to return to it as I had previously. I dearly wanted to know the next sequences of what would happen after I finished ‘Watcher’ but now… three weeks later, I’m feeling conflicted because the angst is so very high in this installment intermixed with the gutting reality of how Sawyer is placing herself onto a path of uncertain resolution — I just found myself feeling distanced from wanting to dig further into her life.

Therefore, I only made it about mid-way through this novel before realising I had to put it down. Then, as I went to post my thoughts onto my blog, I learnt of the news coming out of Vegas – and it reminded me of why I try to steer clear of stories of Dark Topics and Subjects; the world is full of darkness and I do try to keep the literature I read on the ‘lighter’ side of the ledger. At least, I try to find stories full of hope and light – this was one foray where I thought I could soak into a Dystopian world and enjoy what I found there similar in vein to the stories my fellow book bloggers oft talk about during Sci Fi November. For whichever reason, my heart isn’t attached to this series anymore – if anything, I felt it couldn’t get ‘worse’ and just before I closed the book – it sort of did!

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This blog tour is courtesy of: iRead Book Tours

Click through via the badge to find out what else awaits you!

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Reader Interactive Question:

I look forward to hearing your reactions if you’ve read this novel too

and/or if your curiosity had become piqued to read it after reading my own ruminations!

Definitely suggest other Dystopian titles you think I’d enjoy which are outside the box a bit and are not the ones which are suggested over and over as most of those I have taken a pass on reading. Unless you feel there is one I overlooked? I am eager for your recommendations!

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{SOURCES: Cover art of “Watcher” and “Carbon”, book synopsis, author photograph of AJ Eversley, author biography, and the tour badge were all provided by iRead Book Tours and used with permission. Tweets embedded due to codes provided by Twitter. Post dividers and My Thoughts badge by Fun Stuff for Your Blog via Pure Imagination. Blog graphics created by Jorie via Canva: Book Review Banner using (Creative Commons Zero) Photography by Frank McKenna  and the Comment Box Banner.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2017.

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About jorielov

I am self-educated through local libraries and alternative education opportunities. I am a writer by trade and I cured a ten-year writer’s block by the discovery of Nanowrimo in November 2008. The event changed my life by re-establishing my muse and solidifying my path. Five years later whilst exploring the bookish blogosphere I decided to become a book blogger. I am a champion of wordsmiths who evoke a visceral experience in narrative. I write comprehensive book showcases electing to get into the heart of my reading observations. I dance through genres seeking literary enlightenment and enchantment. Starting in Autumn 2013 I became a blog book tour hostess featuring books and authors. I joined The Classics Club in January 2014 to seek out appreciators of the timeless works of literature whose breadth of scope and voice resonate with us all.

"I write my heart out and own my writing after it has spilt out of the pen." - self quote (Jorie of Jorie Loves A Story)

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Posted Monday, 2 October, 2017 by jorielov in Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host, Coming-Of Age, Compassion & Acceptance of Differences, Death, Sorrow, and Loss, Debut Author, Dystopian, Equality In Literature, Father-Daughter Relationships, Indie Author, iRead Book Tours, Multi-cultural Characters and/or Honest Representations of Ethnicity, Parapsychological Gifts, Science Fiction, Speculative Fiction, Upper YA Fiction, Young Adult Fiction

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