As huge fans of Mira Grant’s Newsflesh series, some of us at Badass Book Reviews are thrilled when we see one of her books available to read. When Symbiont became available on Netgalley we freaked and immediately jumped on reading it as quickly as we could. What you see below is a compiled conversation Regina and I had after reading Symbiont.
Please note that the conversation below does contain spoilers for anyone who has not read the first book, Parasite.
Wendy & Regina’s Reviewish-like Thoughts
Regina: I don’t know what to rate it.
Wendy: It’s a hard one. I had the same issue that I did with the first book. When reading, I enjoy it. When I put it down, it’s forgettable.
Regina: Yes. Agreed. I think the writing is brilliant. The characters are great. But I hate the premise. I hate it and I have a hard time buying into it. Also there is a lot of discussion about what tapeworms look like and references to their bodies. Yuck!
Wendy: Yes. And it’s hard reading about Sal who keeps reminding me that she’s a tapeworm wearing a human bodysuit. It gives me the willies.
Regina: Blech. Yes. And talks about her true body. And her fear of teeth. Also, I don’t trust Nathan. Is anyone that perfect? I think he is a badly written character. How could anyone just accept being with a tapeworm?!
Wendy: Yes! So, every time she talks about sex or kissing with Nathan I get grossed out!
Regina: Yes, yes, yes!! I also don’t think the entire world would fall. I can’t accept that there are tapeworms in Africa, parts of Asia and South America. The European Union would never have approved these.
Wendy: Right!!! It’s disgusting. I can appreciate the idea of acceptance but that is pushing it.
Regina: It really is. And I keep thinking – so what if she gets pregnant? And really how could a tapeworm operate a brain. I think it was brilliant as a one book standalone but as a concept of chimera and evolution, it is too much.
Wendy: That bothers me less. It’s as plausible as any zombie story, I suppose. It’s just the idea of the ‘monster inside me’ that I hate. If she wasn’t a tapeworm herself I might like it more. Oddly enough… I like Sherman. I liked him best in the first one too, and I still find myself liking him. A funny villain tapeworm bugs me less than one that’s supposed to be the heroine.
Regina: Me too! I like Ronnie as well. The concept of memory and gender was interesting.
Wendy: It was interesting, especially Ronnie’s ability to know what gender he is regardless of his host. Sherman reminds me a bit of Tansy, and I like her too. I actually like Adam too. I think it’s just Sal and Nathan that I struggle with.
Regina: Me too. Agreed. I like the Dad too.
Wendy: Sal’s Dad? I did in the first book, but he wasn’t in this one much, I thought.
Regina: I’ll give it 4 skulls, even though I’m sort of irritated it is no longer a duology.
Wendy: I agree a duology would have been better. In the end, though, I liked how well written it was, and as the story went on I was more invested so I’ll go with a 3.5.
Thank you Netgalley and Orbit Books for providing a review copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Series Reading Order
3 .Chimera (publishing 2015)