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One by LeighAnn Kopans {3.5 Stars}

One by LeighAnn Kopans takes the idea of superpowers and breaks it down in an interesting way. Really, all superpowers combine a couple of different powers together, so what if some people were born with only one of those smaller powers? What if you had the ability to make fire, but not the ability to resist or heal from fire? That would kind of suck, huh? I loved the powers that One introduces along with the fight of the “ones” to figure out how to fix their powers and become accepted into the Supers’ society. One is an independently published book, which showed a bit here and there, but over all I still recommend it as one of the higher quality indie-books I’ve read.

Note: I received One from the author in exchange for an honest review.

One by LeighAnn Kopans {3.5 Stars}

One by LeighAnn Kopans (One Universe #1)
Published by Author on June 11th, 2013
Genres: Sci-fi, YA
Page Length: 374 pages
How I got my copy: Author
IndieBound - Book Depository - Goodreads
Purchases made support this blog

When having two powers makes you a Super and having none makes you a Normal, having only one makes you a sad half-superpowered freak.

It makes you a One.

Sixteen-year-old Merrin Grey would love to be able to fly – too bad all she can do is hover.

If she could just land an internship at the Biotech Hub, she might finally figure out how to fix herself. She busts her butt in AP Chem and salivates over the Hub’s research on the manifestation of superpowers, all in hopes of boosting her chances.

Then she meets Elias VanDyne, another One, and all her carefully crafted plans fly out the window. Literally. When the two of them touch, their Ones combine to make them fly, and when they’re not soaring over the Nebraska cornfields, they’re busy falling for each other.

Merrin's mad chemistry skills land her a spot on the Hub's internship short list, but as she gets closer to the life she always wanted, she discovers that the Hub’s purpose is more sinister than it has always seemed. Now it’s up to her to decide if it's more important to fly solo, or to save everything - and everyone - she loves.

3.5 Stars

Strengths:

  • The super power system in One is just so cool. The power to fly requires both the ability to lighten your body enough to float and the ability to direct air currents to move around! All of the one powers that we encounter while reading One clicked well for me and I loved how clever Kopans was at coming up with the sub-powers required for a superpower to work correctly.
  • I was a bit annoyed while reading One at certain coincidences, but have faith! One explains all those overly convenient  coincidences in the end ;-).
  • One has the same high quality writing that I expect from traditionally published books, which I was quite happy to discover, so have no fear on that front.
  • One takes place a bit in the future and the technology that is introduced fit well into that timeframe. Everyone is using electric cars, our smartphones have turned into wrist cuffs that can do everything for us (I think watches like this are already coming out this year! Spooky ;-) ).
  • Superpower stories always have the trouble of how they emerged, but One has a pretty good backstory to answer this. There is an explanation involving radiation poisoning causing mutations, etc, and it was enough to satisfy the sci-fi cynic in me, haha.

Weaknesses:

  •  One attempts to use epigenetics to explain Ones and the emergence of separate powers during puberty. It made me twitch since it really didn’t line up with our current knowledge of epigenetics.
  • The romantic element ended up feeling pretty forced to me. There are some reveals that make this make more sense, but I still felt like Mer was just kind of an actress pretending to fall in love instead of actually falling in love.
  • A lot of the tension and angst for Ones comes from the fact that they aren’t considered good enough to work at the Hub where the Supers generally end up working. I got a bit frustrated that Mer didn’t even consider the option of getting a Normal job at a science facility, there are a lot of genetics programs out there currently so it seems likely there are in the future as well.
  • One still succumbed to the problem of many indie books with typos here and there. It wasn’t enough to completely ruin my reading experience, but definitely more than you would expect in a traditionally published book.

Summary:

One does a great job of adding another layer to the typical superpowers story with the partial abilities. While the romance plays a pretty big part in One and didn’t completely convince me, I enjoyed the sci-fi elements and the adventure for the most part. If you’re okay skipping over some typos here and there and are interested in the premise, definitely give One a read!

3.5 Stars
Anya from On Starships and Dragonwings

– Anya

 

 One by LeighAnn Kopans

© 2014, Anya. All rights reserved.

Comments

  1. I bought this book, but I haven’t read it yet. It’s on my list of books to read once I’ve eliminated my massive ARC pile. :) You never know what you’re going to get with an indie book, but from the reviews I’ve seen so far, I think I’m going to like it. Superpowers + romance + adventure? Yup, I think I’ll like it.
    Dena BatchofBooks recently posted…Stacking the Shelves #7: Meet my new books!My Profile

  2. I love the sound of the general concept (says the 90’s girl who grew up watching various X-men cartoons), but the romance element makes me wary, especially after hearing you say it feels forced. Still, the cover is nice, especially for an indie. I might be willing to give it a try. (Also, am I going crazy, or did you post a review for this book’s sequel a little while back?) Thanks for the nice review!
    Kel recently posted…All Our Yesterdays by Cristin Terrill (4 stars)My Profile

    • Haha, X-men cartoons are totally a legit thing to watch :D

      I did in fact post a review for book two a while back. I was on a tour for book two, so that had to be posted on a specific date, but then this one just kept being pushed back since it didn’t have a vital date to be posted ya know?

  3. I don’t like typos or forced romance, but the premise, especially the sinister purpose, make the book sound interesting.
    Hellen recently posted…Review/Reseña – Unwind (Desconexión) – Neal ShustermanMy Profile

  4. This sounds really interesting and it has a great cover too – I’m surprised it wasn’t traditionally published. It’s such a unique idea!

    The ‘when they touch, they can fly’ thing makes me a little edgy though and the ‘badly acted’ romance. I’ll probably pick it up anyway, but those things sound like they might irritate me…

    • It is a quite impressive cover for self-pubbed!

      Maybe see if you can find an Amazon deal for it or something ;-). The romance does get a bit annoying at times, but still an enjoyable read, haha

  5. I remember seeing some reviews of this a while back, but didn’t realize it was self-published. I’m intrigued, but will admit that typos annoy me. However, the premise and the pros you mention in your review are enough to keep this on my “someday” list.
    Lark @ The Bookwyrm’s Hoard recently posted…News & Notes – 3/29/14My Profile

    • Someday seems like a good place, I keep hoping that there will be another round of editing since I was reading finished copies and actually thought for a minute they were ARCs :-/

  6. I’ve been wanting to read this one! I read Solving for Ex by her, and loved it, so I’m very interested to see how she does in a completely different genre.
    Rachel @ the NerdHerd Reads recently posted…Jellicoe Road {by Melina Marchetta}My Profile

  7. One sounds pretty interesting. Just from your description here, I like the sound of the world setup, where it’s 2 or nothing, or else you’re some some of weird freak. The implications of that would be fun to explore. I’m going to have to track down a copy of this book when I can, to see if I like it as much as you did! Thanks for the recommendation!

    • Right? I did really like thinking about all the ways that superpowers could be split into two parts and what would happen if you had only one!

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