Review: XVI, Julia Karr

October 11, 2013 Reviews 0

Review: XVI, Julia KarrXVI by Julia Karr
Series: XVI #1
Published by Puffin/Speak on January 2011
Genres: Dystopia, Young Adult
Pages: 325
Source: Library
Amazon • Amazon UK • Book Depository

Every girl gets one.
An XVI tattoo on the wrist--sixteen.

Some girls can't wait to be sixteen, to be legal.  Nina is not one of them.  Even though she has no choice in the matter, she knows that so long as her life continues as normal, everything will be okay.

Then, with one brutal strike, Nina's normal is shattered; and she discovers that nothing that she believed about her life is true.  But there's one boy who can help--and he just may hold the key to her past.

But with the line between attraction and danger as thin as a whisper, one thing is for sure...

For Nina, turning sixteen promises to be anything but sweet



After spending some time reading this book, I was disappointed in the writing style and abandoned the selection. As a dystopian world, I didn’t feel like I was being introduced into the world at all and there was a LOT of jargon and situations that left me confused and upset. There are simple things about this world that shouldn’t be left to be explained later like the explanation on acronyms like FELS, PAV, AV, or terms like NonCon and verts and why they are so pivotal. I also didn’t feel like the book was taking one the unique theme that I was expecting given the concept of XVI and the sex-teen.


This book is the first in a long time that left me disappointed. The first impression that I got was overwhelming; the world, I assume, had been like this for a while and for Nina to understand everything that was going on, I as a reader had no clue. There was so much that was thrown at me in the very beginning that I didn’t understand that I didn’t really even feel connected to the world or the characters.

This book had a unique concept and the idea of the exploitation of women is real; it was for this reason that I even picked up the book to begin with. But within the first 60 pages the concept wasn’t appropriately executed and was nearly irrelevant to the story. Nina is seemingly afraid of sex, boys, and being a sex-teen. The impression I got from her friend is the opposite; at the mention of a boy, she gets overly excited and can’t get sex off the brain.

I understand that each character is an individual but the extremities here made it hard to like either of the girls. The immediate introduction to them puts them at the forefront and to dislike Nina from the beginning means the book have to work even harder.

There may have been a deeper connection to the idea of the sex-teen and the exploitation that was revealed later in the book, but I couldn’t sift through the jargon, the unexplained, and the characters to finish. I have chosen to supply this book with a rating because of the reasons I did not finish. It is in the interest of balance that readers get all opinions.


xvi truth

Book #3: Untitled

TBR 2013


Leila is a geek, a librarian wannabe, a gamer, and bookworm. She is a lover not a fighter in Kentucky (US). As a single woman Leila spends her time reading, playing World of Warcraft, blogging and working.

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