Review: The Murder Complex by Lindsay Cummings

Posted by Jessi (Geo) on January 26, 2015 | 4 Comments

Review: The Murder Complex by Lindsay CummingsThe Murder Complex by Lindsay Cummings
Series: The Murder Complex #1
Published by Greenwillow (6.10.2014)
Genres: Dystopian, Science Fiction, Young Adult
Format: Hardcover, 398 pages
Source: I own it

3.5 Stars

Meadow Woodson, a fifteen-year-old girl who has been trained by her father to fight, to kill, and to survive in any situation, lives with her family on a houseboat in Florida. The state is controlled by The Murder Complex, an organization that tracks the population with precision.

The plot starts to thicken when Meadow meets Zephyr James, who is—although he doesn’t know it—one of the MC’s programmed assassins. Is their meeting a coincidence? Destiny? Or part of a terrifying strategy? And will Zephyr keep Meadow from discovering the haunting truth about her family?

Action-packed, blood-soaked, and chilling, this is a dark and compelling debut novel by Lindsay Cummings.

My thoughts

I’m still not quite sure how I feel about this book. I was REALLY enjoying it in the beginning, but somewhere along the line it lost some of that magic. I don’t know what happened! I took a break from reading it about halfway through, and for some reason when I came back it wasn’t the same. Maybe because I had already started to forget some of the details. I wanted to love this book, I really did – I love the concept of it, and Linsday is a sweetheart. But sadly, I didn’t :(

I think the main thing that killed it for me, though, was the romance. It wasn’t exactly instalove – thankfully the L word didn’t come into play until later – but it still moved much too fast. I feel like the attachment happened much too fast, considering they barely knew each other. View Spoiler »

The idea is awesome, though! That’s why I was loving it so much in the beginning. The 4 commandments are awesome:

Commandment One: Honor the Initiative.
Commandment Two: Thou shalt not attempt to cross the perimeter.
Commandment Three: Honor the Silent Hour.
Commandment Four: Thou shalt not harbor useful items from the days before.

The whole Pulse and Pin bit was interesting, and of course The Murder Complex was intriguing to me. However, I would have liked to see a little more world building. Why is there a silent hour? When was the Fall? What happened in the Fall? I’m assuming the Fall was the plague (which I’m pretty sure was never actually named – was it??), but it was never stated. I had trouble picturing the Shallows, even though it was explained that they are what used to be the Everglades. But is it just one part of the city? Or does that make up the whole inside of the Perimeter? I struggled to picture everything.

Sometimes we have to give up little pieces of our humanity so that we can keep on living.

This book is pretty violent. It definitely portrays the desperation of the living conditions, because it’s kill or be killed. Our MC kills, sometimes without remorse. She does what she has to in order to survive, for herself and for her family.

I did like the mystery aspect! View Spoiler » I was curious to see what the Murder Complex was all about, and what role Zephyr and Meadow had in everything. However, in the end I felt a little disappointed. I can’t exactly pinpoint why, I just expected…more, I guess.

While the idea of the Murder Complex is fairly unique, the book isn’t all that memorable. Already I’m struggling to remember some of the details. I do want to see what happens in the next book, though! (There was a nice cliffhanger in there to hook me in!)

Side note: In the Goodreads synopsis, it says, “For fans of Moira Young’s Dust Lands series, La Femme Nikita, and the movie Hanna.” Really?! Comparisons like this really kill a book’s chances. I haven’t seen La Femme Nikita, but this book is NOTHING like the other two. I didn’t enjoy Hanna very much, but I loved Blood Red Road, and there is not a single similarity between that book and this one except that the MC has a little sister and it’s a post-apocalyptic setting.

Overall Assessment

Plot: 3.5/5
Premise: 4/5
Writing style: 3.5/5
Originality: 4/5
Characters: 2.5/5
Pace: 5/5
Feels: 1/5
Cover: 4/5
Overall rating: 3.5/5

Jessi (Geo)

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4 responses to “Review: The Murder Complex by Lindsay Cummings

  1. I read this a while ago, so I can’t remember exactly what I thought of it. I do remember, however, that it was mainly positive for me! And ugh, instalove or even a smudge of it can bother the crap out of me. I just checked my old review notes and I actually wrote “Male mc loves girl within 2 seconds of meeting her *slow clap*” so I guess I must’ve seen the instalove too ;P

  2. I’ve been trying to decide whether or not I want to read this book, and I think I might go for the paperback when it’s released. I haven’t seen any of the movies/shows it was compared to, so I think that might help me!

  3. Melanie (YA Midnight Reads)

    Girl I totally agree with you–this book isn’t memorable at all. All I remember about this book was that the romance was just terrible LOL It’s a real shame though, there was A LOT of hype surrounding this one before the release :|

    Lovely review, girl <33

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