Monday, February 27, 2017

DNF ARC Review: 100 Hours by Rachel Vincent

Title: 100 Hours
Author: Rachel Vincent
Publication Date: March 28, 2017
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books

Pages: 368
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A decadent spring break getaway on an exotic beach becomes a terrifying survival story when six Miami teens are kidnapped and ransomed.

Maddie is beyond done with her cousin Genesis’s entitled and shallow entourage. Genesis is so over Miami’s predictable social scene with its velvet ropes, petty power plays, and backstabbing boyfriends.

While Maddie craves family time for spring break, Genesis seeks novelty—like a last-minute getaway to an untouched beach in Colombia. And when Genesis wants something, it happens.

But paradise has its price. Dragged from their tents under the cover of dark, Genesis, Maddie, and their friends are kidnapped and held for ransom deep inside the jungle—with no diva left behind. It all feels so random to everyone except Genesis. She knows they were targeted for a reason. And that reason is her.

Now, as the hours count down, only one thing’s for certain: If the Miami hostages can’t set aside their personal problems, no one will make it out alive. 

Survival stories are one of my absolute favorite genres, accounting for the majority the books that I read that aren't fantasy or sci-fi. I hardly ever delve into the realm of contemporary fiction, but I couldn't pass up 100 Hours when I saw it this year at ALAMW. Despite the low rating on Goodreads, a survival story of teenagers kidnapped in a foreign country sounded right up my alley and I decided to give it a try!

Maddie and Genesis are the main characters of this story. Genesis is a rich kid from Miami whose father owns a large shipping company, making her an extremely wealthy teenager. Her cousin Maddie has been dragged into this impromptu trip along with her brother, and she really doesn't fit in with the rest of the friends Genesis has brought along.

While Maddie was slightly more tolerable than Genesis, neither was a sympathetic character. From the beginning of the book, all of the teens including Genesis and Maddie are extremely unlikeable. Genesis is a materialistic rich girl who knows karate, Maddie is poor and wants to save the planet, and their merry band of tagalongs are all obnoxious and one dimensional. Many of the main characters are annoyingly indestructible throughout the book. One literally jumps off a cliff into a rushing river and manages to miss all the rocks and not drown in the current. Much suspension of disbelief is required.

I started 100 Hours fully expecting to stay on the edge of my seat, and I did - for awhile. Once everyone stopped making out with every stranger they came across and the kidnapping finally happened, the plot of 100 Hours did keep my heart racing for a few chapters. Then it just kind of went nowhere. There were chapters of trudging through the forest, talking, eating, and listening. Once I found out what the reasoning was behind the kidnapping I began to lose interest. Eventually I realized I didn't really care what happened to any of the characters and that was when I decided to give up and move on to something else.

The one thing I can say for 100 Hours is that the setting was really well done. Yes, it's just a rainforest, but Rachel Vincent did a fantastic job of creating a mood of unease early on. I just wish the vibe could've held on for the rest of the book!

I really wanted to love 100 Hours! I wanted an incredible survival stories of teenagers making it out despite the odds, but the story quickly became tedious and unrealistic, not to mention the characters didn't make me care what happened to them. It's possible that I may have really enjoyed this one had I stuck it out, but I just didn't have it in me.