Review 264. Lindsay Cummings – The Murder complex.

13576132Title: The murder complex.
Author: Lindsay Cummings.
Pages: 400.
Published: June 10th by Greenwillow books.
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher.
Sort: The murder complex #1.
An action-packed, blood-soaked, futuristic debut thriller set in a world where the murder rate is higher than the birthrate. For fans of Moira Young’s Dust Lands series, La Femme Nikita, and the movie Hanna. Meadow Woodson, a fifteen-year-old girl who has been trained by her father to fight, to kill, and to survive in any situation, lives with her family on a houseboat in Florida. The state is controlled by The Murder Complex, an organization that tracks the population with precision. The plot starts to thicken when Meadow meets Zephyr James, who is—although he doesn’t know it—one of the MC’s programmed assassins. Is their meeting a coincidence? Destiny? Or part of a terrifying strategy? And will Zephyr keep Meadow from discovering the haunting truth about her family?
Rating:

I hate to say this, because I follow the author on Instagram and she seems sweet, but I disliked this book. The writing-style, romance, plot and characters didn’t work for me, at all.. The only reason this book has 2 stars is, because it was enjoyable. This book has that ‘I don’t like it, but I still can’t stop reading’ factor, so that does count for something. Plus, the blurb didn’t lie when it said action-packed and blood-soaked. It only forgot to include that the overall story is boring.

This book is told from the POV of Meadow and Zephyr. The first problem is that every chapter switches back and forth between them, but they don’t have distinctive voices. It was hard to connect with either of them and it felt too chaotic. Sometimes those switches prevented me from being wrapped into the story and I think it would have been better to stick with Meadow – or at least only a couple of chapters from Zephyr’s POV. The writing-style also felt.. chunky. It’s not fluent, like you might see in some of the quotes I use later on.

The plot started out interesting, but soon follows some of the basic Dystopian story lines. I wish the author had been a little more creative, because the idea of training people for ‘The murder complex’ to keep the world from overgrowing was good. The fact that it’s not inventive enough makes it a little predictable and I was never blown away by situations that might be meant as surprises.

But, I could live with these aspects. The thing that annoyed me to no end were the swear words. Not only do I dislike it when authors come up with own made words (although sometimes it does work out), Zephyr uses them EVERY SENTENCE. Flux, I kept rolling my eyes and gritting my teeth, so that made it hard to enjoy his chapters.

"A7. A8. Their faces are dead. Devoid of all emotion. Like machines. It's bullskitz."
(What's up with this sentence?)

And what is a Dystopian book without the dreaded insta-love? I should have known when he talked about how ‘it was faith that they met each other’ and ‘Instead, all I can think is I might love this girl.’ What about this cliché line:

Naamloos
dImyJ
I know Michael, I know..

The characters weren’t that bad. Meadow has learned to defend herself by her father and she has some great moves up her sleeves. She doesn’t shy away from violence or killing to save herself or her family, but she does have the tendency to be a bit rash and she suffers from the sacrifice-syndrome. Will I read the next book? I’m not sure..


40 comments

  1. Ooh, I understand what you mean! The fact that I enjoyed it weighs heavy for me, so I rated this a lot higher. The swear words are odd and the instalove is annoying, though it didn't bother me too badly because it wasn't really acted on much? Maybe I'm becoming immune to instalove! Oh gosh. I hope if you try the next book you'll like it better! Great review Mel!

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    1. Insta-love doesn't have to be so bad, but this made me eyes twitch, haha.

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  2. Sounds like another run of the mill dystopian *sighs* it could have been great. And that sentence, what the heck is a bullskitz? Thanks for the honest review Mel.

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  3. This is the third two-star review I've read for this book, so yeah, I think I'll pass. I actually follow the author on Twitter though (she actually followed me first, so I followed back) and like you said, she seems sweet, but yeah, I don't have the time to read a book my blog friends collectively aren't into. Maybe a couple books down the road she'll write something that we can all be excited about!

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    1. I hope so, because I'd love to support her by buying her books! :)

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  4. You pretty much summed up my thoughts for this book. I was hoping it would be better. Great review!

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  5. I'm so torn on this one! When it comes to this book, I feel like people either really enjoyed it (despite issues they may have had) or hated it. I've followed the author's blog for well over a year now and when I found out she was getting published I was psyched! I'm always game for blood soaked action! But I admit that I'm hesitant. Especially where "insta-love" is involved. I hope the action will help me love it more than I hate it, but I'll probably check this one out at the library before spending my money on it.

    All the best,
    Mackenzie @ Oh, For the Love of Books!

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    1. That is a good idea Mackenzie! :) I hope you enjoy it more than I did.

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  6. Gosh, I love your reviews. x) They make me smile so much. Also: that gif = perfection. I'm kind of excited for this one, buuuut I have seen a lot of not-so-happy reviews. And GAH the dystopian syndrome really eats me. It's boring, frankly, and I'm not so keen to reread it. BUT. I probably will still try this one, just because it's sooo high on my wish list.

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  7. Bummer, this one is on my TBR list. But yeah that sentence made my eye twitch, lol.

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  8. I was totally looking forward to this novel but the reviews didn't sound that ecstatic. Now I have this nagging feeling that I'm about to join the disappointed camp. :(

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  9. Great and honestly review Mel! I love Lindsey and her new books looks good. I'll definitely try it and I hope it isn't that weak of a dystopian novel. And that sentence was weird, honestly. It's great you tried it out Mel :)

    Happy Reading
    Patrick @ The Bookshelves

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  10. Oh no! I'm sorry to hear that you didn't like this one that much. I was considering reading it for the Debut Author Challenge, but instalove? No way. And I don't like how it switches between their two point of views, especially if the characters don't have distinctive enough voices. Oh well. Lovely review, Mel! Hopefully you enjoy your next read more :D

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  11. I get the whole bad-book-but-keep-reading feeling a lot. Some authors make the weird swear words work out, but "bullskitz" sounds like something a child would say after dropping a bag of skittles. Yeah, okay, maybe not. Instalove? Er... I might still give this a shot, but it won't be in my immediate TBR or anything. Awesome review, Mel!

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    1. Oops, published too soon. 'Haha, dropping a bag of skittles is a nice way to think about bullskitz'

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  12. Ugh :( I have been anticipating this book because well, it sounds so awesome from the blurb! I love actions and bloodshed though I definitely can see why similar POVs can result in confusion especially for me.

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  13. Haha, I absolutely love that Michael gif. 'Bullskitz' seriously? Is that a real word in this book, oh dear. I have this as an eARC so I am very apprehensive to get to it now. But, thank you so much for the honest and funny review. My expectations are seriously lowered now and hopefully I will be able to enjoy it more knowing that I will have to deal with annoying insta-love and POV that aren't distinct (I HATE that!).

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  14. I had the same reaction as Michael when she said that. I definitely agree with you though, this book does have an addictive quality to it so while you might not like it, you still read on.

    The weird swear words definitely weirded me out. Like what the flying flux was up with that?

    I am sorry this didn't work out for you either, Mel!

    Lovely review though! :)

    Rashika @ The Social Potato

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  15. just wrote a comment but got an error when i posted it *cries*

    anyways, wanted to say i totally feel exactly the same way as your review about everything, especially insta-love *shudders* but i have to say that the action was very repetitive and uninteresting.. i wanted more thrilling action. i felt this was mundane.. such a shame since i totally adore the author!

    - Juhina @ Maji Bookshelf

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  16. Aw. I'm so sorry that you didn't like this one Mel. I wanted to read it.. months ago, lol :D Then I heard more about it. And peeked at ending. And now I just don't want to read it at all :\ Sigh. But still have it pre-ordered. I will read it someday. Most likely. Though I am so sure I will be annoyed by it all as well :p lol. Anyway. Amazing review. <3

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  17. I don't like swearing either, unless it is organic and used sparingly!

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  18. People don't seem to enjoy this one as much as I hoped. Well that insta-love is surely a mood-killer. Too bad it happened here too. I mean the whole idea doesn't sound bad and characters seem decent. Well maybe I should just skip it. Great review :)

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  19. I've been hearing the same sort of feelings from other reviewers. I had this one on my tbr, but not very high up so I'm not that upset. I hate when POVs aren't distinctive, it takes so much from the story. Thanks for the honest review, I'll probably be skipping this one.

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  20. A lot of mixed reviews for this one. I think I better skip it.

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  21. Oooo, this is disappointing to hear /: This one truly did have a promising premise. Zephyr? O.o Lol how do you even pronounce that name lol? Anyway, ugh. Multiple POVs definitely can work against the favor of a book. It sounds like that was the case her, it appears as if they just made everything disjointed and caused you to feel less invested in the characters themselves.

    Ugh >.< The words "dystopian" and "typical" in the same sentence already make me dislike this book. There's just such a formulaic route that most dystopians tend to take. It makes everything so contrived and predictable.

    ... bullskitz?! Really, things like made up swear words seem so pointless. Like I really don't think it adds to the story whatsoever, it just makes things more annoying lol.

    And insta-love, the icing on the top of the usual bullskitz dystopian cake [;

    Great review! It was very detailed and has convinced me that this story wouldn't be up my alley. lol I enjoyed the gif usage too c;

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    1. Zef-fier, that's how I say it in my head, haha.

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  22. Aw it's too bad this wasn't the right book for you - from your review I will probably feel the same way as I am not a fan of instalove and the POV switches. Actually the only thing I might be interested in is the random swear words! Bullskitz just sounds too funny! :)

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  23. Aww, it's definitely annoying when a book uses a switching PoV with no distinctive voice :(
    And "it was faith that they met each other"? Eurgh. Definitely no.

    But thanks for sharing Mel!

    Neysa @ Papier Revue

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  24. I laughed out loud at the sentence you quoted from the book and then wrote (What's up with this sentence?) below it.

    Man, this book just doesn't work and I feel so bad because I wanted to enjoy it, at least.

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  25. I finished this book yesterday and I have mixed feelings mainly because I could not picture the world. I also think that this book lacked world building because the author focused more on the action scenes which I loved. I also did not like the insta love at the beginning. Also, the author can be redundant at times and I got Zephyr & Meadow mixed up because of how similar they sound. Overall I still liked this book despite the issues that I had because of how action packed it was and because of the plot twists.

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    1. The world-building could definitely benefit from some more explanations!

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  26. Plus, the blurb didn’t lie when it said action-packed and blood-soaked. It only forgot to include that the overall story is boring. -You said

    I agree with you entirely! The boring is lame lame lame. I like Lindsay as a person since she's very nice to me and always replies to my tweets. But her book is not the best…it's one of the biggest disappointments in 2014. I was so excited for her book then boom…nothing much occurred in the story, the blurb made it sound dynamic but the story was meh…plus the character is also a cocky bastard grrr HAHA I also posted my review for this one :))

    www.lite-rate-ture.com

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  27. I agree with everything you said. There was a lot of potential here but it was poorly executed. It lacked development, fell victim to typical dystopian tropes, had that dreaded insta-love and so much more. But at the same time I was entertained while reading. Weird. I had wanted to like this one too, but now I don't even know if I will read the sequel.

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  28. Oh no!! Awwww :( Sorry to hear this one wasn't good, Mel. I totally added this to my TBR because the idea behind it just seemed so interesting and promising. But...."bullskitz".. I was like, o _ o" -furrowed brows- It's unfortunate that the writing had those flaws. Swear words and over-use of made up vocab really drives me insane too. Don't know if you've read it, but for murder books, I Hunt Killers by Barry Lyga was one that I found very enjoyable :) if you are ever looking for something of a similar taste.

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  29. Awh! I, too, follow this author on Instagram and Twitter, so I was hoping that this book would be amazing. While the story could be enjoyable, I'm like you. A lot of things you mentioned (instalove, no flow) would get on my nerves too much for me to truly enjoy the book. Thanks for the review and for saving me from buying this one!

    Kristen @ Pretty Little Pages

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