Review: Dev1at3 by Jay Kristoff

Posted September 22, 2019 by Sophia Rose in Reviews / 12 Comments

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I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Dev1at3 by Jay Kristoff
Narrated by Erin Spencer

One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

Series: Lifel1k3 #2
Genres: YA Dystopian Romance
Published by Listening Library
Released on June 25, 2019
Format: Audiobook
Source: Publisher
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The Delight

After the big reveals in the closing scene of Lifel1k3, I was ready to press on and see what became of the disheartened, disbanded team that had been led by Eve.  Things are not in a good place for any of them as they search out their own destinies in the harsh world, but they each manage to make their way even as the Lifelike Eve stews on a terrible new plan.


Dev1at3 is the second book in the Lifel1k3 series and won’t work as a standalone.  It is the second segment of a story and follows right on the heels of the previous book.  There is a bit of explanation at the beginning for those who might have gotten hazy on the previous events, but it might not be enoug for a new reader/listener.

So, Eve has discovered the secrets about herself and driven the others away.  Ezekiel, Lemon, and Cricket leave together, but through circumstances end up separated.  Lemon Fresh lands with a group of deviates like herself who are on the radar of the big corporations and the religious group that would seek to destroy them for being different.  Cricket finds a new friend to protect.  And, Zeke ends up finding an old enemy to help him on his quest.  New people and mechanical people pop into their lives, the stakes get higher, and there are more twists and a cliff hanger to leave things at a desperate place.

I don’t want to say more and spoil the book or the series for others.  There are too many wonderful breath-taking twists and surprises that I want others to experience for themselves.  I’ll stick with impressions.  Though, I did have a light bulb moment when it dawned on me that the fall of Eve’s family and all was a retelling of the Russian Romanov story even down to the possible living and missing youngest daughter, Ana.

It’s still fast paced, brutal, and incredibly descriptive.  This post-apocalyptic world is gritty and dark.  The author isn’t afraid to kill or harm to prove it.  I had to deal with loss a few times.  But, its not utterly without hope.  I was cheering for our disbanded group to find their way somehow.  There are multiple POVs like in book one, but maybe more with the newcomers added in to give a multi-faceted perspective.
It’s not all action, though mostly.  Each person has introspective moments.  I know I was supposed to hate what has happened to Eve, but I did sympathize.  She went through a level of betrayal, even if it was not meant to be bad, and it came from all sides and at once.  That would be enough to shatter a person.  I’m holding out for the third book to see if she can turn it around.  Then there is Lemon Fresh.  She really comes into her own in this one.  She has a chance to find out her origins this time.  Meanwhile, Zeke and my favorite Cricket are adjusting and pushing forward.

Whew boy, that ending!  Still reeling a bit.  It does leave me in desperate need, but I expected that with this author’s books.

The narration work was superb.  Erin Spencer had a large cast of vastly different peoples and types.  She got her genders, ages, accents and more nailed perfectly.  I like her crystal clear witty voice for Lemon Fresh the best, but none of her other voices or narration moments are lacking at all.  Great match for this book/series.

YA Warning:  violence and language moderate to severe

All in all, this was heart-pounding, thought-provoking, and engaging from cover to cover.  YA Dystopian fans need to give this one a look-see.

My thanks to Listening Library for the opportunity to listen to this book in exchange for an honest review.

Challenges Met

New Release #129
Audio #57


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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.

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Mary Kirkland
2 years ago

This sounds good and I do love a book with a bunch of twists.

Sophia Rose
2 years ago
Reply to  Mary Kirkland

This series has been pulse-pounding from the opening sentence right on through and leaves you gasping in surprise so many times, Mary. Great stuff!

Lover of Romance
2 years ago

Glad to hear you are enjoying this series darling!! Love those books that give you these moments.

Sophia Rose
2 years ago

Oh yeah! This one packed a punch for sure, Renee. Can’t wait for the final book. 🙂

Carole Rae
2 years ago

Dang! That does sound really intense. Good find!

Sophia Rose
2 years ago
Reply to  Carole Rae

I spotted the first book reviewed on Kim’s Caffeinated Reader blog and had to try them. 🙂

Rachel @Waves of Fiction

This does sound like an exciting series. It’s hard to write a review for a book when it’s part of a series without leaking spoilers, but you did a great job! Hope the ending left you reeling in a good way. 🙂

Sophia Rose
2 years ago

Whew! I was hoping I didn’t spoil it, but still gave enough so people had the idea of what the series was about. 🙂

Carole @ Carole's Random Life in Books

This is a series that I really do want to read. I am so glad this worked for you. I may have to check out the audio.

Sophia Rose
2 years ago

I read the first book and did audio for the second. Both are good, but the audio was fantastic. 🙂

2 years ago

This sounds like a solid series and I love it when a book has some well done twists. How interesting it’s actually a Russian Romanov retelling. It sounds like the author manages a good balance between the gritty and dark reality of the world, but showing hope as well. And that’s great the narration is done so well too.

Sophia Rose
2 years ago
Reply to  Lola

I thought the Romanov connection was cook, too. Yes, Kristoff is known for his gritty, heartbreaking stories. 🙂