Author: M. D. Waters
Date of Publication: February 6, 2014
Formats Available: Hardcover, Paperback, E-book
Buy This Book: Amazon
Synopsis: Emma wakes in a hospital, with no memory of what came before. Her husband, Declan, a powerful, seductive man, provides her with new memories, but her dreams contradict his stories, showing her a past life she can’t believe possible: memories of war, of a camp where girls are trained to be wives, of love for another man. Something inside her tells her not to speak of this, but she does not know why. She only knows she is at war with herself.
Suppressing those dreams during daylight hours, Emma lets Declan mold her into a happily married woman and begins to fall in love with him. But the day Noah stands before her, the line between her reality and dreams shatters.
In a future where women are a rare commodity, Emma fights for freedom but is held captive by the love of two men—one her husband, the other her worst enemy. If only she could remember which is which. . . .
The first novel in a two-part series, Archetype heralds the arrival of a truly memorable character—and the talented author who created her. Look for Prototype, the second novel from M.D. Waters, coming July 2014.
To be honest I wasn't particularly impressed by the first 50 pages of Archetype, it was a little slow and I wasn't quite sure what to think of Emma. However, as soon as I passed the first chapter or two I found myself becoming more and more engrossed in the story and by the end I was completely lost in the novel. Archetype was a mesmerizing and eerie read and I finished the novel desperate to get my hands on the sequel!
Waters did an absolutely fantastic job creating Emma's character. It's a challenge to create a character who has no sense of self, but at the same time has enough of a personality to keep readers interested, and Waters pulled it off beautifully. The internal struggle between the Emma of the past and the current Emma was fascinating to read, especially since both of them have completely different ideas on who they can trust. As Emma remembers more and more about her past she slowly begins to shift into the person she was in the past, however this shift was so gradual and integrated into the story that I didn't notice how much character development she underwent until I got to the end of the novel and realized what a different person she had become.
One of the most fascinating parts of this novel was the flashbacks of Emma's previous life. It was interesting to piece together Emma's past along with her and Waters had a talent for perfectly tying in each of the flashbacks to what was happening in the present. The fact that the past conflicted with what Emma was being told in the present gave the characters, especially the ones associated with Declan, an unnerving quality and kept me guessing about what as going to happen next and what was true and what wasn't. I was especially interested about the flashbacks involving the camp where girls are trained to become wives and part of me almost wants a whole novel about it.
Waters did a wonderful job creating an eerie and futuristic world without weighing down the novel with too much technical information. She gave just enough detail to have the story make sense but left enough of it out to make the world a little mysterious and almost creepy. From the unnatural feeling of the hospital to Declan's oddly secluded home something always felt a little off; but that's what made the story work as well as it did. Likewise, each of the characters had a front they were showing to Emma to disguise what the world she lived in was actually like, making each of them feel a little... wrong, for lack of a better word. It was impossible to distinguish the truth from a lie and every time I thought I knew something Waters would throw in a twist to make me question it.
The end of the novel was shocking and breathtaking, I didn't see that turn of events coming and it was so much better than I thought the ending was going to be. The revelations at the end turned everything in the novel upside down and made my desperate to get my hands on the sequel to find out what happens. Archetype was an absolutely amazing novel and I ended up loving it so much more than I thought I would. I highly recommend this novel to fans of thrillers and science fiction, just make sure to have the sequel handy, you're going to want it!
*I received a copy of this novel from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.