Thursday, 29 January 2015

Blog Tour Review: Tunnel Vision by Susan Adrian

I’m so excited to be taking part in the blog tour for the release of Tunnel Vision, and welcome to my stop on the tour! You can follow the tour by clicking on this link to discover so much more about Tunnel Vision. Susan Adrian has kindly provided an excerpt of the first two chapters of her debut novel on her website, and you can read them here. Enjoy!

Tunnel Vision by Susan Adrian book cover

Title: Tunnel Vision
Author: Susan Adrian
Format: ARC kindly provided by
St. Martin's Griffin (Thank You!)
My rating: 5 / 5
Pages: 320

Add to Goodreads

Romance and action come crashing together when a teenage boy with incredible powers is brought to the attention of the government.

Jake Lukin just turned 18. He's decent at tennis and Halo, and waiting to hear on his app to Stanford. But he's also being followed by a creep with a gun, and there's a DARPA agent waiting in his bedroom. His secret is blown.

When Jake holds a personal object, like a pet rock or a ring, he has the ability to "tunnel" into the owner. He can sense where they are, like a human GPS, and can see, hear, and feel what they do. It's an ability the government would do anything to possess: a perfect surveillance unit who could locate fugitives, spies, or terrorists with a single touch.

Jake promised his dad he’d never tell anyone about his ability. But his dad died two years ago, and Jake slipped. If he doesn't agree to help the government, his mother and sister may be in danger. Suddenly he's juggling high school, tennis tryouts, flirting with Rachel Watkins, and work as a government asset, complete with 24-hour bodyguards.

Forced to lie to his friends and family, and then to choose whether to give up everything for their safety, Jake hopes the good he's doing—finding kidnap victims and hostages, and tracking down terrorists—is worth it. But he starts to suspect the good guys may not be so good after all. With Rachel's help, Jake has to try to escape both good guys and bad guys and find a way to live his own life instead of tunneling through others.

-- As seen on Goodreads

My Thoughts

Once I read the synopsis, I knew I’d enjoy Tunnel Vision, but I wasn’t prepared for how much I’d love it! It is the perfect blend of Sci-fi, mystery and thriller genres with government plots and intrigue thrown in, and it’s easily the best Sci-fi novel I’ve read in a long, long time. It combines so many elements flawlessly, resulting in a thrilling adventure that had me on the edge of my seat and I didn’t want it to end! Add to this the amazing characterisations and a heart-warming family bond, and I’m completely in awe.

The book starts off with a bang, and the fast pacing and intensity stay consistent throughout. I have to mention the writing style first – I clicked with it from the first paragraph. Everything flows so easily, and all the descriptions of events are crystal clear. I loved seeing all the subtle twists and turns, and all the different layers of intensity, lies and speculation. There is always something going on and something new to consider and get swept away with. I found so many intriguing moral and ethical questions raised, and while it’s not necessary to delve so deeply into the book, I love that the option is there to pause and have a good chew on some tough questions if you so wish. The abuse of power by those in a position of power is something that always interests and concerns me, and to see it portrayed so clearly and convincingly… it’s brilliant. I also loved the playlist that was incorporated into the book! Each chapter is headed with a song title, and either the title or the song itself is based on the current chapter.

Jacob Lukin is our main character and narrator, and I absolutely loved him. On the surface he’s your typical eighteen year old guy, but he has a secret. Jake has the ability to link with other people when he touches an object. Think of his ability as psychometery in reverse. Instead of getting images and impressions from the past, Jake can touch any object and ‘tunnel’ to the owner of the object, as long as they are currently alive. He can tell their exact location, along with what they’re feeling and experiencing at that moment. In essence, he is the perfect covert spy for any government or other organisation. If he has access to an object, he will find you. He promised his father he would never reveal his secret, but he slipped up at a party one night, and his secret has become known to DARPA. Now, they want to use his talents for their own purposes…

I thought Jake was a complete sweetheart! I loved seeing your regular, everyday lad being the hero of a book for a change. I connected with him very quickly, and I felt so bad for him with everything that eventually happened! He has a very strong bond with his entire family, and I loved seeing this as it’s not shown often enough in YA for my liking. Knowing he has strong family ties makes what happens that much more horribly gut wrenching! The choices this kid had to make… my goodness, nobody should have to make them, never mind an eighteen year old! I loved seeing his fighting spirit and his determination to never give in, no matter how much crap gets dished his way. The things that happened may have changed Jake’s outlook, but they never changed what was in his heart.

I think my favourite part of the book was the relationships between the characters and in particular, the relationship between Jake and his little sister, Myka. It’s probably the best brother/sister relationship I’ve read about, and I loved both characters so much. Right from the beginning I could see a bond already existed and it kept developing over the course of the book, and it captured my heart completely. It’s not just a random thought here and there - we can plainly see that Jake cares deeply for his baby sister, and it’s backed up with both his words and his actions. I really liked Myka. She’s twelve and a little genius (literally), who attends an advance placement school. I loved how observant she is, and even though we only get to see things from Jake’s side of the story, we can see she loves and trusts her big brother. I also loved Jake’s grandfather, (Dedushka). He started off being a little crazy and paranoid, but oh holy… after everything that happened, it’s perfectly understandable!

The romance angle of the plot is, thankfully, a lot more subtle than I originally expected. There is an attraction between Jake and Rachel, but it’s a very small part of the story, and it adds a different element to things. Personally, I didn’t really connect with Rachel that much. I don’t feel like I got to know her that well, and her role wasn’t as prominent as I thought it was going to be. I would have loved Tunnel Vision just as much if the romance thread wasn’t included - everything else was so good, I wouldn’t have missed it!

I had so many different theories about the possible ending, and the majority of my ramblings ended up being way off! I did spot a couple of things, but overall I was pleasantly surprised and I thoroughly enjoyed it. This book concludes nicely, and there are a couple of threads left for a possible sequel. My final note in my ARC on my iPad was “That. Was. Awesome!” It’s a couple of weeks since I read Tunnel Vision, I still feel the same way! I thought it was an awesome debut, and an amazing story with loveable characters. Hand on heart; I really, really hope there will be a sequel - I really want to know what will happen next!

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