Anomaly (Anomaly #1) by Krista McGee

Anomaly (Anomaly #1) by Krista McGee

Goodreads Synopsis
Thalli has fifteen minutes and twenty-three seconds left to live. The toxic gas that will complete her annihilation is invading her bloodstream. But she is not afraid.

Thalli is different than others in The State. She feels things. She asks questions. And in the State, this is not tolerated. The Ten scientists who survived the nuclear war that destroyed the world above believe that emotion was at the core of what went wrong—and they have genetically removed it from the citizens they have since created. Thalli has kept her malformation secret from those who have monitored her for most of her life, but when she receives an ancient piece of music to record as her community’s assigned musician, she can no longer keep her emotions secreted away.

Seen as a threat to the harmony of her Pod, Thalli is taken to the Scientists for immediate annihilation. But before that can happen, Berk—her former Pod mate who is being groomed as a Scientist—steps in and persuades the Scientists to keep Thalli alive as a test subject.

The more time she spends in the Scientist’s Pod, the clearer it becomes that things are not as simple as she was programmed to believe. She hears stories of a Designer—stories that fill her mind with more questions: Who can she trust? What is this emotion called love? And what if she isn’t just an anomaly, but part of a greater design?

I read the synopsis of this and thought it would be a great science fiction dystopian book, but it was not. It was a heavily religious propoganda text for the author's specific type of religion. I do not have an issue with religion, I do have an issue with skimming through the Bible and choosing parts of the text that fit their needs. I found myself cringing at some points of this because Thalli would be talking to John and he would tell her a part of the Bible with no context and she would just go along with it as being correct. That is brainwashing and definitely not the type of message that Jesus was trying to get across.

It seemed to me that the author was more concerned about getting their religious message out there than develop characters or a plot. I had a hard time following what was happening and why it was happening because it kept falling back on how science is so bad and they want to eradicate feelings (especially love) that they think "destroyed the world" but are more than okay with creating children out of nothing and doing extensive brain studies on these kids. First of all, scientists are not like this. They do not do experiments on people without consent from the person, especially to what types of invasive procedures will be involved. Second, there is no way that the scientists would be that far advanced in their abilities and procedures if they had lived underground for 40 years. Even if they were 40 years in my current future when the nuclear war happened and then 40 more years, I doubt that in 80 years and underground with limited supplies could the scientists create people out of thin air. And there is no explanation for this, it is just stated and then assumed to be true.

Considering Thalli was said to be an anomaly which means she questions everything and has feelings, it does not make sense to me that she would just automatically accept John's truth about the Designer (God) as being true and valid. Especially since it is obviously a heavily scientific community where they look for proof and for things to be "true". It does not make sense for her to not question it at all. And she should question it because teenagers do question it. It would have made this book so much better to have Thalli learn about the concept of religion and heavily question it before deciding that Christianity is something she wants to have faith in. Also, why not have other religions explored then? Maybe Christianity isn't the type of faith Thalli or the others want to believe in, but maybe Buddhism would fit for their culture.

I did not like Beck because he did not have a real personality. He was literally written for Thalli to fall in love with. I am glad a female was leading this and not the other way around, but Beck had such potential and was wasted because he was written as solely being a love interest. Especially since he was so smart and could be a leader, but this was wasted because he was second to Thalli. And!! He just accepted religion as it was explained to him by John too. For someone with such a scientific mind, he should have had some backlash or questions about what John was teaching him rather than telling Thalli that he understood what John was saying about the Designer and love and accepted it as it was. That makes no sense in context of his character and the culture.

The other scientists also bothered me. There is no way that they would rather try to create children out of thin air rather than having natural child birth. There is enough scientific research now that they could change a child's genetic code in womb without issue. So why not just do that?

I have no issue with exploring science vs religion if it makes sense, but it did not in this context. This was the author's attempt at telling people limited amounts of information about Christianity without proper context. I could ramble on forever about why I did not like this book and how religion and science were portrayed but I will not do that.

Overall: 2.5/5 because it had such a good premise but was way too preachy of a text for me.

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