Hey guys! Today I'm part of the tour for Stung, by Bethany Wiggins. Be sure to drop by the other blogs; you can find the schedule here. And of course, don't forget to enter the giveaway at the bottom!
Author: Bethany Wiggins
Publisher: Walker Childrens
Released: 2nd April 2013
Rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Purchase: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | Amazon UK | The Book Depository | IndieBound
Fiona wakes up in her room, assuming it's a day like any other. That's until she notices the poor state of her room - and not just her room, but her whole house. Everywhere is faded, dusty...empty. And everything outside is dead. Then there's the strange tattoo on the back of her right hand. She learns that those who have been branded with this tattoo all turn into beasts, savage and insane; the streets, sewers and tunnels are their hunting grounds, preying on anyone not careful enough or quick enough. A wall exists to separate the beasts and their prey from the elite, and those who live on the other side of the wall are determined to kill all of those who have the tattoo. Fiona's status as a marked person - a marked girl - has now made her a target.
When reading this you're struck with the frightening thought that some of this could actually happen. The causes of the new, barren world in Stung are fully explained, and there is a possibility that something like this could happen. And it all comes down to bees. A lot of us look at them as insects to avoid at all costs because big buzzing creatures that sting? Not exactly best friend material. And yet we rely on them far more than we might think. There is also irony in the fact that those in society who used to be the elite are now the mindless beasts who roam the streets, something that is also brought up within the book itself. Wiggins presents an intriguing yet harsh world, in which you can see clearly just how much it takes to survive.
Fiona was a bit of a mixed character for me. I liked her in the sense that she is a good person, and I appreciated her readiness to fight. I liked that she wasn't afraid to confront something, instead doing what she could to defend herself - for the most part, anyway. At the same time, however, I didn't fail to notice how easily tears seemed to come to her. I accepted that she had lost an incredible amount, and that there were times when those tears were definitely deserved. But I also wanted her to be a little bit stronger. In addition to this was her lack of thinking. This made her somewhat frustrating at times. Bowen was much more sensible, and I liked the contrast between the tough side of him and the more vulnerable side. His history is a sad one, and I did feel sorry for him. The relationship between them was sweet, although this did come with its problems. It started off slowly, which really worked, but then seemed to develop too quickly for my liking. Still, there was a conspicuous absence of insta-love and love triangle, which in itself is something to be very grateful for.
Overall Stung is a book that, while flawed, is easy to enjoy. Wiggins manages to create this dystopian world and provide hope for it in one book, which is very impressive. I did see mention on her website of a second installment to come next year, so I'm definitely curious to see where this will be taken. This is still one that can be read on its own, however, as all the questions that are brought up while reading this do get answered.
About the author
Bethany Wiggins has always been an avid reader, but not an avid writer. She failed ninth grade English because she read novels instead of doing her homework. In high school, she sat alone at lunch and read massive hardback fantasy novels (Tad Williams and Robert Jordan anyone?). It wasn't until the end of her senior year that the other students realized she was reading fiction--not the Bible.
Once upon a time, Bethany's sister dared her to start writing an hour a day until she completed a novel. Bethany wrote a seven-hundred page fantasy novel that she wisely let no one read--but it taught her how to write. She is the author of SHIFTING, STUNG (April 2013), and CURED (2014).
On offer are FOUR SIGNED copies of Stung and honey sticks.
Please note that I am not responisble for the giveaway; go here to meet the hosts.