In Pure, Pressia lives in a world that has been ravaged by Detonations and massive wars. She doesn’t remember much of Before, except that it was better and that she was not one of the chosen ones who were privileged enough to gain entry into the Dome. Instead, she lives life day to day, dreading the day that she turns 16 and will be enlisted in the army, that is until she meets Partridge…
Partridge is one of the privileged who managed to gain entry into the Dome when he was a child. His opinion of those who live outside the Dome, the wretches, is pretty low, since his father is a powerful official of the Dome who believes in the power of money and class. When Partridge learns that maybe his mother is still alive, after thinking that she’s dead for his whole life, he plots to escape the Dome to the dangerous outside world and find out the truth for himself. It is there that he meets Pressia and their worlds collide.
If this sounds like your typical boy-meets-girl-boy-and-girl-fall-in-love YA novel, it’s not. Surprisingly. While it does sound very typical of the genre right now, it’s actually very different.
First off, the Detonations involved in the nuclear warfare that killed the earth changed humans so that they ‘fused’ with whatever object they were holding onto/around when the Detonations went off. So if you were holding onto a doll, like in Pressia’s case, your left hand becomes that doll. Sound creepy? That’s because it is.
It’s really hard to describe the plot of Pure, because it’s very convoluted. While parts of the book are grotesque in the description of the world, it’s still haunting and mesmerizing. A Dome protecting the rich and keeping out the poor also doesn’t seem that unrealistic, considering the racial/social divide that exists today. It’s just been a bit exaggerated in the novel.
What starts off as a journey to escape the military on Pressia’s part and a journey to find his mother on Partridge’s part doesn’t end up that way since new revelations and unexpected twists and turns change that simple journey so that you never know what to expect. And the unique plot of new revelations definitely kept my attention.
The romance is also a surprise. Given how the synopsis is worded, I was pretty certain about the love story, but then was (pleasantly) surprised when things went a different direction!
My biggest pet peeve with this book though was the ending. It just sort of…petered out. I wasn’t quite sure what happened at the very end, since it became very confusing. Also, I understand that this book is part of a series, but I didn’t feel a sense of closure towards the end of the novel. Given the big issues of segregation, nuclear warfare, human fusion, and many other things, I expected the book to take a stance on something or to provide some sort of ending, but at the end, I didn’t really feel anything about these major issues.
Given how much I liked reading the book when I was reading it, I’m surprised at how difficult this review is to write, since I don’t remember that much about this book! It set out to do so much, and it definitely portrayed a haunting and ugly world, yet it left very impression on me by the end. A lot of potential unfulfilled unfortunately.
So for that: 3.5/5.