I received a copy from Netgalley.
This was something I downloaded with auto-approval which seemed like a good idea at the time. Unfortunately, I did not enjoy this book much. I think the technological concept may have been a bit over my head.
It was a fairly quick read, I read it in two sittings, the plot was fairly compelling in an I want to know what the hell is going on way. I can't fault the writing, really. I just did not get it.
For starters, there is no world building. When there is explanations it comes in a way I found confusing and info dumpy. Unless I missed it, there is no time scale, from the advanced technological improvements its fairly obvious its futuristic and at some point going past World War 3 is mentioned which puts it in mind to be a dystopia. But I saw no information as to how the world came to be in its current state.
I found the characters to be very flat and two dimensional, I didn't connect at all with the main character Luna. The basic idea of the novel was interesting, everything is now available on a virtual reality level, and there are some rare people who can tell the difference between when they're in the virtual reality and still feel their body in the real world. Luna is one of these people. She came off, at least to me, with a special snowflake vibe, when it came along the lines that the girl who refused to take part in the virtual world and manipulate it can do it better than anyone and that make her very dangerous.
Everything is controlled by a big ass company who are iffy right from the start and the kids go through tests to see where they will be placed in this company. Not exactly original there. Of course nothing is as it seems. There's an underground group set out to bring the big bad company down who need Luna's special abilities, a boy who makes her see the light, a dead mother with a suspicious history that has a whole subplot with how Luna got her abilities. Luna of course has to decide who to trust and what road she's going to take.
The reveal with the truth behind the big bad company was actually very creepy and disturbing. But the whole thing was very confusing, and at one point, I'm fairly certain one of the virtual worlds the heroine and her friends go into is actually based on the author's other book. Which made me roll my eyes.
The actual storytelling itself isn't bad, it was a gripping enough plot that I did finish the novel rather than DNFing, but as I said, the whole concepts in it were just too confusing for me and therefore I didn't really like it that much.