Monday, 27 January 2014

The Social Code Review

Everyone at some point in time has gone to a bookstore to pick up a specific book only to leave with something completely unexpected. This happened to me the other day, resulting in me grabbing The Social Code as my newest read.
photo source here
The Social Code (originally published as The Start-Up in 2011), by Sadie Hayes, takes place in the sunny Silicon Valley. It’s about two orphaned twins, Adam and Amelia Dory, who both received scholarships to go to Stanford University. Amelia is a computer nerd with incredible coding skills, while Adam has an impressive business sense. It’s told from the perspective of numerous characters – not just the main two characters. It’s the first book in the series The Star-Up, which currently has two books released. The original version of the series has a third book to it, but it’s only available as an ebook and is noticeably shorter (as are all the books in the original publication of the series).

The plot was basically Gossip Girls, but with hacking. From the back of the book, it had sounded mildly interesting. Personally, I’m a pretty big fan of books that involve technologically competent characters. What I hadn’t expected was a book that about the rich or the ones trying to become rich. There were more scandals that happened in this book than there is in an episode of daytime television. If I wanted that, I probably would have gone to watch daytime television.

There was a surprising bit of a plot twist, but it happened within the last 100 pages and by the time I reached it, I was starting to get really bored of the book. The pace of the book was a bit too fast, leaving out a lot of detail even with showing the novel from the perspective of just about every character mentioned.

Most of the characters are fairly generic in the book. You have your ambitious, you have the ones with daddy issues, and you have the ones who spend a good portion of the book trying to sleep with their object of interest. The only character that stood out was Amelia, the main female who happens to be the only reason why I ended up reading the book. Out of the many characters and many perspectives, she’s one of the few that actually showed any development, and even then, that’s pushing it a little. She was also the only one I could feel any connection to as a reader, what with her awkwardness and her addiction to sitting in front of a computer.

Overall, I’d give this book a three out of five. The book is good for an afternoon read if there’s literally nothing else to do. The plus side is that it’s fairly short, so if you want some mindless entertainment, I’d recommend it. Overall, though, the book just wasn’t outstanding and fell back into the category “generic YA about rich people”, along with The Clique, The A-List, and Gossip Girl. But borrow it from the library instead of spending money on it – it isn’t something to reread.

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