Uninvited

Uninvited - Sophie Jordan

Davy's wealthy, a musical prodigy who has been accepted into Juilliard, and has a great boyfriend and best friend. Everything seemed to be perfect in her life. Until the tests for HTS (Homicidal Tendency Syndrome or the kill gene) came back positive. Suddenly she was kicked out of her private school, lost her spot at Juilliard, and lost her friends and boyfriend. Everyone expects her to kill someday. Her life can never be the same.

 

Uninvited sets up a world that explores some interesting concepts. Scientists have discovered a common gene in almost every murderer, and they use this identifier in the hopes of preventing murders. Of course, when people discover this, those with the genes face prejudice, even if they've never committed a violent action in their lives. This prejudice then pushes some people who would never have otherwise done so to commit murders out of frustration at being treated like murderers just because of a single gene they were born with. They basically created a self-fulfilling prophecy with the whole situation.

 

At the same time, murder is a scary thing, and it's understandable how people would jump at a chance to prevent it, particularly when they're not the ones being negatively affected by the situation. Before Davy is discovered to have the gene, she doesn't question the prejudice against those with the gene. Even afterward, Davy is still pretty prejudiced against those with the gene. She thinks of herself and a handful as others as special exceptions to the idea that those with the gene are incredibly violent. Any act of violence, no matter how small, by an HTS carrier just proves her beliefs, while any act of kindness is seen as an exception.

 

The book is divided into two parts with the first dealing with how Davy's life changes because of the discovery and the second part dealing with her time in a special camp she's forced into. I really liked seeing the changes in Davy's life and her dealing with the sudden prejudice. I really would have liked even more exploration of those changes. At Davy's new school she meets another carrier, Sean, that she is drawn to, and their budding romance takes up time that I would rather have spent on her world. It didn't feel natural, particularly once we hit the second part of the story, and the romance just wasn't as interesting to me as everything else. I felt like the story hit a lot of interesting examples of prejudice that Davy faced, but didn't spend enough time with any of them to really explore things.

 

Uninvited had a lot of potential and is an enjoyable read. I just wanted it to go further with the exploration of its own world. I'm hoping the sequel delivers on that.