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Review: The Conspiracy of Us by Maggie Hall

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“Even if this whole thirteenth thing were true- this whole conspiracy of…us- do you think anyone would accept it?”

I really enjoyed the premise of this book. The idea that there are these 12 families, The Circle, that controls the entire world was extremely fascinating because this is mostly done in fantasy novels or even paranormal. This usually is not the type of thing to show up in contemporary. It was easy to imagine that everything we know and thought was happening coincidentally was in fact being controlled by these families.

For example, it is mentioned in the book that War World II was started because of one family’s quest to acquire more land than they needed. Also, the Kennedy assassination was somehow connected to The Circle. Again, this was a fascinating topic. It is just one big book of conspiracies. Fictional conspiracies theories. The premise alone is what kept me reading. I also enjoyed how the author incorporated history into the book. I did not fact check it, but it sounded legit. And I’m sure somewhere down the line, I could see myself researching more about Alexander the Great.  

I’ve seen mostly positive reviews about this book, however, I can say that I don’t see myself joining the fan club anytime soon. Although I really really enjoyed the premise, the book did not deliver for me. It was simply okay.

There were clichés that were a little hard to swallow. The beginning felt a little unoriginal and the writing was a little boring. It felt like it was missing something. The pace picked up when the actions started, which I thought was nicely done.

I don’t want to spoil anything, but the death felt unnecessary. I would have expected the death to happen in the second or third book, because since it was in the first, it killed the realms of possibilities that could have been explored with that individual and the main characters. Also, it made some major plot holes.

Two main settings in this book are Paris and Istanbul. I feel like both these cities have character, however, I did not feel it as I was reading. There were lack of descriptions and it felt like they were in a boring town instead of these two amazing, colorful cities.

Even though I enjoyed the premise, it was complicated and hard to follow at times. I felt like it could have been explained a little bit more.

This book ended on a cliffhanger, and I think this was a good decision because there are more books. I’m not sure if I’ll be continuing the series. I’ve spoiled myself for the second book, so I’m aware of some of the plot points, romance, and surprises. I’m just not sure if I’ll be satisfied with what happens next.

Also, the third book comes out in 2017, and if the second ends on a cliffhanger, I’m not sure if I want to wait that long to see what happens next. However, I am tempted to read the next books for the purpose of figuring out if the author plans to do anything surrounding Avery and her dad.

Character Analysis

Avery felt like a typical YA heroine. The regular girl, who isn’t really regular, but instead the chosen one. She doesn’t know it yet, but everyone else knows it.  And because she feels like her mom is withholding information, she rebels. She felt a little two dimensional, and I didn’t really connect to her character or understand her decisions.

I think one of the major problems I had with the characterization of Avery was that she knew everything. I usually don’t have a problem when characters know everything, however, the thing with Avery was that she read every book and basically knew the answer to every equation. I wouldn’t have had a problem with it if there had been hints of her knowledge throughout the entire book. It felt like she got that random burst of knowledge whenever the plot needed her to have that knowledge. It felt a little inconsistent with her overall POV.

With typically love triangles, there is a “safe” guy and then the somewhat bad boy. Jack was the safe guy, and Stellan was the kind of/sort of bad boy. I enjoyed Jack a little bit more than Stellan only because I felt like I saw more of him throughout the book. However, both guys did not really stand out for me. There connection was not really there.

The love triangle is not as prominent in this book. However, as the series continues, I’m sure it is going to get more complicated.

Random Tidbits

  • What does Avery’s school think about her absences?

  • I chuckled at the name drop because I was not expecting it to happen.

  • There were so many puns toward the end of the book.

  • Did anyone eat in this book?

Final Analysis

The Conspiracy of Us is great in theory, however, the greatness of it is lost somehow in this book of tropes. The book is overran with unexciting characters and unspectacular events.

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