Review: The Wicked We Have Done by Sarah Harian

March 30, 2014 Raquel Romero 1

The Wicked We Have Done by Sarah Harian
Series: Chaos Theory #1
Publication Date: March 18th 2014
Publisher: InterMix Books
Genres: Dystopia, New Adult, Suspense, Thriller
Pages: 244
Format: eBook

• • iBooks

A debut author’s darkly suspenseful take on New Adult romance--and a perfect read for fans of Veronica Roth's Divergent.

Twenty-two-year-old Evalyn Ibarra never expected to be an accused killer and experimental prison test subject. A year ago, she was a normal college student. Now she’s been sentenced to a month in the compass room—an advanced prison obstacle course designed by the government to execute justice.

If she survives, the world will know she’s innocent.

Locked up with nine notorious and potentially psychotic criminals, Evalyn must fight the prison and dismantle her past to stay alive. But the system prized for accuracy appears to be killing at random.

She doesn’t plan on making friends.

She doesn’t plan on falling in love, either.

“Sarah Harian puts a futuristic spin on New Adult.”—RT Book Reviews

My Thoughts

I had to get my thoughts together for this review. The Wicked We Have Done is unlike any New Adult novel Ive read before. First off, its a Dystopian New Adult. Dystopian, people! Dystopian! The New Adult genre is a relatively new genre and most of it is contemporary romance. So when I heard about this book, I knew Id get my hands on it the moment it was released.

The Wicked We Have Done has a lot of similarities to Sophie Jordans Uninvited from the protagonist who is suddenly uprooted from her perfect, normal world, to the strict, government program for criminals. The Wicked We Have Done takes you on a wild ride and doesnt let go. The action starts from the very first chapter and it keeps picking up. Evalyn is being taken to the compass roomsa prison alternative that lasts a month and is supposed to determine whether shes a criminal at heart, or whether her crime was just a one-time thing. Shes being dumped with nine other psychotic criminals and their fight is one to survive. Theres so much going on that you just dont know where to look.

Evalyns crime is supposedly the worst of them alland Harian keeps us on our toes practically the entire time. We only get these small intervals that depict the life Evalyn had beforewhich includes the perfect boyfriend and awesome best friend. And while we know that she no longer has that life, we dont know exactly what she did to end up in the current situation shes in. Furthermore, Evalyn is a very complex character. From the beginning of the novel, you can feel Evalyns guilt and self-hatred. She knows shes going to die and shes just waiting for it. The only person left for her to live for is her little brother, and the chances of her making it out of the compass room are very, very, very slim.

As the novel progresses, the pieces of Evalyns crime start coming together. Whats more, is that we see Evalyn start to change in her way of thinking. As she spends more and more time with her fellow inmates she starts forming friendships and even falls in love. The New Adult genre is filled with romance; thats all there is to it, practically. The Wicked We Have Done, however, focuses on Evalyns journey. The romance takes a backseat to Evalyns story, while at the same time having a grand impact in the decisions she makes.

The only real critique that I have is in regards to the world-building. It wasnt that we were introduced to a lackluster world, it was that we were introduced to so much at once that it became a bit overwhelming at times. There are all these criminals, all these apparitions, all this action that happens all at once, before I even have a chance to catch my breath. Furthermore, Harian doesnt make it that clear that this is taking place in a futuristic worldat least not at first, so I as a bit lost and confused. It really isnt until the very end that we get more a history and backstory to the setting, and by that time, Id already gotten used to the Chaos Theory world. While Ill admit that it was a bit weird having the Dystopian and New Adult genres intercept, Im excited to read more stories like this one. Regardless of its genre, The Wicked We Have Done is definitely not one youll want to miss.

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