Day Zero, the first book of the Day Zero duology, is a story that takes place sometime in the future when two major political parties known as the Opposition and the Spark are battling for power in the United States. Seventeen-year-old Susan, more frequently known by her nickname “Jinx” (which means “bad luck”) throughout the novel, is the main character, and her mom has recently divorced her dad and remarried a man named Jay, who is also the head of security at a large bank. But one day, while she’s out with her brother, Charles, and stepsister, McKenna, the bank which Jay is in charge of overseeing suddenly explodes, wiping out its data/money and starting a financial crisis for which Jay is blamed. Shortly thereafter, Jinx also discovers that her biological dad, Dr. Doomsday, who has always been obsessed with preparing for the end of the world, may also have something to do with the incident. In essence, this novel follows the journey of Jinx as she tries to keep those around her safe and seeks justice.
A couple things before getting into the positive and negative aspects of this book, however. Firstly, this book’s really jam-packed with action throughout and has a vast array of twists and turns. Second, I feel like this novel would appeal to readers with a variety of tastes, ranging from suspense to romance to action. And third, I’d highly recommend this for only those who are young adults or older.
Now moving onto the pluses and minuses, so to speak, of Day Zero, in the first quarter or so of the book, I felt it to be kind of dull to be honest with the events taking place in the novel not making much sense. I was initially very confused as to what the Opposition and the Spark was and whether to treat the novel as fantasy or realistic fiction. Looking back on it now, I’d say it’s a mix of the two genres, and as to the Opposition and the Spark, you just have to be a bit patient with it at first, as the author will kind of slowly let you know more and more about what’s going on with them. After the initial quarter part of the book, however, I was engrossed enough to keep going till the end of it, so that was a plus for sure.
However, the novel’s twist ending was a bit… strange, at least for me. I suppose it was because it felt like it was something shocking to the point of almost being kind of absurd, but anyway, don’t let this hold you back from reading the book because you might have a different reaction to this.
On a more positive note, I enjoyed the discussion of philosophical and political matters that resonated throughout the novel, mainly illustrated by the differences between the views of the Opposition and Spark. It was something completely unexpected yet pleasantly surprising for me, so hopefully this’ll be a plus for you as well. To be more specific, Nietzsche, a philosopher, was mentioned a couple times, and the different approaches of the Spark and Opposition to the problems confronting the United States were also discussed at length. Last but not least, character development was great, the dialogue between characters felt natural, and overall, the book was pretty solid.
In conclusion, Day Zero , as mentioned above, is a book that I think will appeal to a wide range of readers. I’d definitely encourage checking it out. If you find this book to be engrossing, check out the second novel in this series, Day One!
Review By ~ Andrew