Thursday, December 10, 2015

Review for Nirvana by J.R. Stewart - After rewrite - 5 bees knees! Before rewrite - 3 bees knees


When the real world is emptied of all that you love, how can you keep yourself from dependence on the virtual?

Animal activist and punk rock star Larissa Kenders lives in a dystopian world where the real and the virtual intermingle. After the disappearance of her soulmate, Andrew, Kenders finds solace by escaping to Nirvana, a virtual world controlled by Hexagon. In Nirvana, anyone’s deepest desires may be realized - even visits with Andrew.

Although Kenders knows that this version of Andrew is virtual, when he asks for her assistance revealing Hexagon’s dark secret, she cannot help but comply. Soon after, Kenders and her closest allies find themselves in a battle with Hexagon, the very institution they have been taught to trust. After uncovering much more than she expected, Kenders’ biggest challenge is determining what is real – and what is virtual.

Nirvana is a fast-paced, page-turning young adult novel combining elements of science fiction, mystery, and romance. Part of a trilogy, this book introduces readers to a young woman who refuses to give up on the man she loves, even if it means taking on an entire government to do so.

I have my original review before the reworking of the book right after my new review of the book after the reworking.

I've read the new draft of this book, and it definitely improved the character development that was lacking in the previous version of the book. I thought it was very good to flesh out the characters a lot more. There were some changes that definitely turned this more into a YA type story, and I'm not necessarily in love with that because there is more of a love triangle thing going on in this version, but I think it was handled nicely in the end; so far anyway. One thing that I don't like that changed was the difference in the age of the main character; especially since there was a big difference in age between Andrew and her now, I don't get how they were at University together with such a big age difference. Kenders mentions she was 17 and Andrew was 25, and they've known each other for 3 years, so she was around 14 or 15, and he was 22ish when they met; I don't know that's just weird to me, and with the age difference it made the relationship not fit with Kenders age. I also liked that in the other version of this book that Andrew and Kenders had a more solid relationship, COMING UP IS A SPOILER FOR THE OLD VERSION OF THE BOOK!!! I liked that they were married, and I also liked that she seemed more distraught about trying to find out what happened with Andrew, and I felt they had a deeper connection in the previous version. I did think this book was had a more complete story than the other version, so I bumped up my rating to a 5, and since I really liked the premise from the previous version, all that was needed with this one was character development, and this new version did a good job of showcasing that, and I'm glad a lot of the tech talk was omitted from this version. I liked that Kenders is tough, and that she uses logical thought processes to figure stuff out, instead of going off willy nilly without a clue. I love the idea of a virtual world type thing, and I love dystopian stories, so everything involved with that was very interesting to me, and kept me reading. So, I would definitely recommend this book, and I am looking forward to reading more of the series in the future.

MY REVIEW for the first draft I read- Originally I gave it a 3 rating -

I loved the premise for this book, but it fell a bit flat for me. It felt sort of cold to me. The scenes in the book felt disjointed, and they didn't feel complete. I also wanted more character development, the main character didn't feel whole. I don't have an impression of her. Also, I felt there was too much technical talk, and I actually like some tech talk, but it took away from the story for me. With all that said, I still liked the underlining story, and it kept me reading, and I do want to know what happens in the next books. I'm not quite biting my nails in anticipation, but I am interested, so I'll keep a look out for the next book. I did in an odd way like Kenders; the female lead; even with the lack of knowing much about her character, and I wanted good things for her, and I'm interested in the mystery of what is going on with Andrew, so yeah I'll check out the next one.


  1. Sounds like a great premise, but not so rest execution. Great review. :D

    1. It originally wasn't, but the book got rewritten, and it turned out to be a great book!