Friday, February 8, 2013

Review: Pivot Point by Kasie West

Friday, February 8, 2013 with 13 comments
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Title: Pivot Point
Author: Kasie West
Series: Pivot Point, book #1
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date: February 12, 2013
Source: from publisher via Edelweiss
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Knowing the outcome doesn’t always make a choice easier...

Addison Coleman’s life is one big “What if?” As a Searcher, whenever Addie is faced with a choice, she can look into the future and see both outcomes. It’s the ultimate insurance plan against disaster. Or so she thought. When Addie’s parents ambush her with the news of their divorce, she has to pick who she wants to live with—her father, who is leaving the paranormal compound to live among the “Norms,” or her mother, who is staying in the life Addie has always known. Addie loves her life just as it is, so her answer should be easy. One Search six weeks into the future proves it’s not.

In one potential future, Addie is adjusting to life outside the Compound as the new girl in a Norm high school where she meets Trevor, a cute, sensitive artist who understands her. In the other path, Addie is being pursued by the hottest guy in school—but she never wanted to be a quarterback’s girlfriend. When Addie’s father is asked to consult on a murder in the Compound, she’s unwittingly drawn into a dangerous game that threatens everything she holds dear. With love and loss in both lives, it all comes down to which reality she’s willing to live through . . . and who she can’t live without.

We've all wondered what might have been, where life might have taken us if we'd done things just a little differently.  I know I have.  But Addison Coleman has a gift:  she is divergent, which means she has the ability to view a choice by looking into the future for a specified period of time and determining which path will leave her with the least regrets once it's run its course.  Her ability is often confused with clairvoyance by her peers, but either way, it's a superpower I wouldn't mind having.

When I started Pivot Point, I was expecting more of a science fiction story, mostly because of the paranormal elements and superpowers, but in truth, once Addie uses her power and the two paths diverge, it became more of a contemporary story, not that I'm complaining.  Each chapter is split between her time in the Compound (PARA) and her time in the Normal world (NORM).  At times, the two paths converged, and I liked the sense that no matter which choice(s) you make, some things are meant to be.  Maybe it's not set in stone how they come about, but one way or another, they are going to occur.

Besides the diverging path plotline, there was an underlying murder mystery plot that I found equally intriguing.  Even more so was how it involved Addie and those closest to her and it ended up intermingling with each of the separate lives Addie was living.  And even better was the fact that I thought I'd put all the pieces together, that I knew who the culprit was and how they were doing it, only to be completely blind-sided by several aspects of the story at the conclusion.  Bravo to all these new YA reads that are capable of fully throwing me off the trail.  I'm an avid reader and that's admittedly a hard feat for a novel/author to accomplish.  So, whether the author really is that tricksy or I'm simply so immersed in the story that I'm not watching as closely for clues, the author deserves a big ole pat on the back.

I immediately connected with the characters, as well, even the ones I didn't like so much, because they all felt authentic and true to self.  Each of Addie's relationships -- be it with her parents, her best friend, or the potential love interests -- was realistic and full of the emotions and drama that befit a confused teenage girl.  Not once did I question the authenticity of Addie's narration or whether she was manipulating Searches for the best possible outcome.  It was clear that she used her gift with extreme caution, unlike many of her fellow paranormals.

One aspect I would have liked to see expanded was the setting, both in the Compound and in the Normal world, but that's simply because the book is set in Texas, specifically Dallas in the Normal world, and I love novels set where I live.  But the only thing that really came about because of the setting was the stereotypical obsession with football.  I get it.  Anyone who's seen Friday Night Lights assumes all Texans are inclined toward a preoccupation with the sport.  Whatever.  It's fine...I just think that more could have been done with the setting and the abilities, but this is totally on a personal level and should no way impact your reading enjoyment because the passion for football does play an important role in both of Addie's paths.  I'm just spittin' out my two cents here.

Overall, I really enjoyed Pivot Point.  I've never seen that movie Sliding Doors, though I've heard that's the best comparison to make for this book.  Either way, I loved the duality of this book, the two possible outcomes.  I mean, how do you choose if both options seem right...or if neither of them do?  That's a difficult question that inevitably leads me to believe that it's better that I can't see the outcome of my decisions until it's too late.  Be steadfast in your choices and have no regrets, right?  At any rate, I liked the ending to this book immensely and am so excited to see that this is only the first book in a series.  I can't wait to see what other paths Addie's decisions might lead her down.

Favorite Quote:

“When I read, I feel emotion all on my own. Emotion no living person is making me feel.” 

Rating:   photo 4-1.png 1/2


  1. I keep hearing great things about this book but I'm still unsure its a book I want to read myself. Great review though :)

  2. This book is everywhere this week and almost everyone is loving it. I think the concept is fantastic and I saw Sliding Doors and it was just okay. I hope this is way better executed than that movie. I am glad it was a good read for you! Happy Weekend!

  3. I'm glad you enjoyed this, Jen! I sped through this one pretty fast, although I admittedly had more mixed reactions to it. I felt like some things could have been better developed or more exciting, but I can definitely see why so many readers are loving it, too. It's pretty entertaining, and it will be interesting to see where the story goes next. :)

    Wendy @ The Midnight Garden

  4. I LOVED this book! And OMG you should watching Sliding Doors! It's on Netflix! I just watched it again a few months ago before I read this book. I love the idea of getting to see what would happen if you chose something different but then again I don't think it would make the choice any easier. Both choices would still have good and bad aspects. I liked exploring that and seeing that some things would happen either way. I was curious to learn more about the paranormal compound as it seemed like they were a bit sketchy and were hiding things. I'm hoping that will be explored more in the sequel.

  5. I love your review and I'm so glad you loved this book!!! I thought it was amazing how the two futures intersected. And I love what you said:

    "At times, the two paths converged, and I liked the sense that no matter which choice(s) you make, some things are meant to be."

  6. Wonderful review! Makes me want to check this one out. I've heard such amazing things. Yet I haven't wanted to read. I think because I don't really like the cover! But I've heard the saying don't jugde a book by its cover and I should listen :)


  7. I CAN'T wait to read this, it looks so good! I'm so happy that you liked the characters, since I think that's one of the most important parts in a novel, if not THE most. And two possible outcomes? Interesting! Amazing review!

  8. this book wasn't even on my radar. It is now though. Just added it to my Goodreads. It sounds soo good.

    I would have gathered it was more sci fi too based on the cover and the description. Contemp is awesome too, so mix it together and yay!

    This cover makes me think of Taylor Swift with Dandriff.

  9. I need to finish this book! I've started it so many times and then I read the end (something I NEVER do) and was completely turned off! But, you LOVED this book, so I will give it another go! Great review!

    Alyssa @ The Eater of Books!

  10. 4.5 stars, yay! Nice review! I can't wait to read Pivot Point!! I've been waiting to read this for FOREVER.

  11. Nice review. Now I have another book I need to move up on my TBR pile.

  12. Love this review. I haven't seen Sliding Doors as well so this book will be something new to me. :)

  13. This is the first review of the book I've read and I'm even more excited about the book. Ever since I fist saw it I've had it on my to-read list and I'm really looking forward to it. I don't know when I'll get the chance to read it but I really like your review and I'm definitely buying it sometime soon.
    Great review!


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