Sunday, December 9, 2012

{Review} Glimpse by Claire Merle

Title: Glimpse
Author: Claire Merle
Format: NetGalley e-book ARC
Publisher: Faber & Faber
Release Date: June 7th, 2012
Date Read: April 14th, 2012
Rating: ★★
In a near future, society is segregated according to whether people are genetically disposed to mental illness. 17-year-old Ana has been living the privileged life of a Pure due to an error in her DNA test. When the authorities find out, she faces banishment from her safe Community, a fate only thwarted by the fact that she has already been promised to Pure-boy Jasper Taurell.

Jasper is from a rich and influential family and despite Ana’s condition, wants to be with her. The authorities grant Ana a tentative reprieve. If she is joined to Jasper before her 18th birthday, she may stay in the Community until her illness manifests. But if Jasper changes his mind, she will be cast out among the Crazies.

As Ana’s joining ceremony and her birthday loom closer, she dares to hope she will be saved from the horror of the City and live a ‘normal’ life. But then Jasper disappears.
Led to believe Jasper has been taken by a strange sect the authorities will not intefere with, Ana sneaks out of her well-guarded Community to find him herself. Her search takes her through the underbelly of society, and as she delves deeper into the mystery of Jasper’s abduction she uncovers some devastating truths that destroy everything she has grown up to believe.

Actual Rating: 2.5

THE GLIMPSE seems is the odd cousin of AWAKEN by Katie Kacvinsky and DELIRIUM by Lauren Oliver. The plot is different but as a lot of similarities.

AWAKEN and THE GLIMPSE: Maddie and Ana are both the daughters of the men who ruined the world (either by making the test to decide whether you are Crazy or Pure or the software in Awaken). Both run of with men who are part of a rebellion.

DELIRIUM and THE GLIMPSE: In Delirium, love is considered a disease. In THE GLIMPSE, strong feelings are considered a disease. You are strong-willed, something is wrong with you. You are quiet and soft-spoken, something is wrong with you. As with AWAKEN, the main character of DELIRIUM and THE GLIMPSE both ran off with rebellious men.

This is about the extent of the similarities though.

The plot intrigued me but I could see how it would offend some readers. The Crazies are those with mental illness. The Big 3, as they call them in the book, are depression, schizophrenia, and anxiety. People who know someone with those illnesses may feel uncomfortable with the book.

Disclaimer: Religious people may also find this hard to read. Religion is banned and anyone who worships it is Crazy. This is not uncommon in newer dystopias though.


Ana starts off less than favorable. More than once, I got annoyed at her for doing some really stupid things but, thankfully, she grows as a character. What made me really like her was that she noticed how pathetic she was.

Jasper made me want to tear my hair out from the moment I met him. He was annoying – really annoying. You feel a bit bad, though, when he get’s tortured but that couldn’t make me like him.
Cole wasn’t anything special. Honestly, I couldn’t find anything swoon worthy about him. He was bland. I really didn’t care what happened to him.

My favorite character was Lila. She was funny, cute, and reminds me a lot of my friend. Ana was very good and comes in as a close second. Her brother Nate comes in as third.


While the plot wasn’t exactly original, it was entertaining at times. The beginning dragged a bit and took me a while really get into it. The middle was very good though and made up for the dragging beginning. My favorite was probably when she admitted herself to the mental facility.

After that, the plot started dragging again and I found myself skimming the last thirty pages or so. The last fifteen pages were a tad more exciting but still not enough to really grab me.

I really wish Merle went deeper into the illnesses because I would have really loved to learn more about them. Another really fun thing I wish Merle will do it make a small prequel with Lila or Ana’s father! I would buy that in a heart beat.

Minor Spoiler ahead

The insta love between Ana and Cole was really disappointing. The moment he entered the scene I knew how it would end which was annoying. If the romance was cut completely from the book, I might have enjoyed it more. But of course, you can’t do that in a YA book…

Spoiler Ends

The paranormal aspect really took me for surprise. I had no idea that would happen but I don’t really think it fits in with the story.

Likes and Dislikes

- character development
- Interesting
- plot
- The love triangle wasn’t done badly (just not very well)

Most characters were weak and/or boring
- the plot was not original
- insta-love Cole
- Jasper


THE GLIMPSE has flaws, but I think Merle has potential. I’m not sure if I’ll read the next installment because the ending didn’t make me wonder. I recommend borrowing it from your local library.

Lisbeth is a German teenager who enjoys killing people on videogames and discussing decapitation in great detail. She's also obsessed with Oceana, but you're not supposed to know that.

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