Uninvited by Sophie Jordan Review: Whiny Kill Gene Carrier

November 10, 2014 by Jeann @ Happy Indulgence | 2 stars, Books, Reviews

Uninvited by Sophie Jordan Review: Whiny Kill Gene CarrierUninvited by Sophie Jordan
Published by HarperCollins on January 28, 2014
Source: Edelweiss, Publisher
Genres: Thriller, Young Adult
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When Davy Hamilton's tests come back positive for Homicidal Tendency Syndrome (HTS)-aka the kill gene-she loses everything. Her boyfriend ditches her, her parents are scared of her, and she can forget about her bright future at Juilliard. Davy doesn't feel any different, but genes don't lie. One day she will kill someone.

Only Sean, a fellow HTS carrier, can relate to her new life. Davy wants to trust him; maybe he's not as dangerous as he seems. Or maybe Davy is just as deadly.

The first in a two-book series, Uninvited tackles intriguing questions about free will, identity, and human nature. Steeped in New York Times bestselling author Sophie Jordan's trademark mix of gripping action and breathless romance, this suspenseful tale is perfect for fans of James Patterson, Michelle Hodkin, and Lisa McMann.

Lured in by a cool concept of a kill gene running through the general population, I thought Uninvited would be an interesting societal exploration of identified potential killers. Unfortunately, all I got was a lot of whine and self pity from the main character Davy. Bella Swan and Nora Jones has nothing on this girl, as I trudged through pages and pages of complaining and prejudging.

I just can’t believe this girl. The very second she is identified with the kill gene, she decides to lump herself in as a loser and stares at her fellow HTS carriers with judgey eyes. The ones who are violent and unfriendly are either thickset, have bulging eyes or bulbous noses. Why does everything bad have to be linked to an unattractive appearance? Think she’s got it pretty bad because she’s now a labelled killer? I’ve read plenty of starving heroines from dystopians who had more self worth than this one, and they’re the ones who really have something to complain about.

I used to be that girl with the envious friends, the coveted boyfriend, a bright future. It had all been an illusion. None of it real. Just as I hadn’t been real. If my life had been real, if it amounted to anything, it would have survived a DNA test that declared me potentially dangerous. I’d still have that boyfriend, those friends, the life that was going somewhere. 

I could go on about Davy’s boyfriend Zac and supposed best friend Tori, and how they dumped her as soon as they heard the news, and how everyone and even her family boxes her away. Despite knowing Davy for most of her life, everyone suddenly treats her differently and are even afraid of her, condemning her to prison by their judgemental selves. But because Davy embodies the whole concept of judging someone she doesn’t know, and spouting self pity, I’m not going to complain about how others treat her. She creates her own problem and I’m not biting.

The book does pick up towards the very end, when Davy gets selected for special training which allows her to interact with more carriers who have the gene. I liked reading how those selected would be used by the government to execute orders, it was definitely disturbing and a violation of human rights. This part of the book was rushed really quickly though, right before the ending in an attempt to create a semblance of a conclusion. I wish there was more of a build up or something because the ending was unsatisfying.

I can’t help thinking that telling an HTS carrier that she needs to toughen up is ironic. Presumably, carriers are already tough. Sociopaths waiting to snap. 

It’s not all bad though, there was a lack of romance for most of the book. While there are some mushy scenes from the very first page, this ends quickly as Davy gets diagnosed. She does have this attraction to a HTS carrier, Sean, who wears a mark of violence, but there really isn’t too much of it until the very last pages.


Uninvited contains an interesting exploration into prejudice and societal pressures against people who commit violence, even though they aren’t proven killers. The moral of the story, is to break free of the mould that society places on yourself and have the confidence to be yourself. It’s just a shame about the amount of whining and Davy’s character really made the book hard to bear at times. She was the one dishing out the most judgement, which covered the true message of the book in that sense.

Rating: 2 out of 5

I received a review copy of this book from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. 

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Jeann is an Aussie YA blogger and mum who loves to read and recommend books! You can usually find me fangirling about books on my various social media channels including Twitter @happyindulgence, Instagram and Youtube.

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28 responses to “Uninvited by Sophie Jordan Review: Whiny Kill Gene Carrier

  1. Sorry you didn't enjoy this one much, Jeann – it was a very mediocre read for me and, looking back, I realise how judgemental and whiny Davy really was. I agree with you in saying that the ending did pick up, but that it was also rushed. Also, I didn't feel anything for the "romance" between Davy and Sean. Are you planning on reading the second book? I am, but it's not a priority for me.

    Thanks for sharing a fab review! 🙂
    Ebony @ Daring Damse recently posted…Daring Damsels’ Travelling BookMy Profile

    • Oh yes, Davy was the epitome of judgemental and hipocrisy, she was just so annoying! I don't think I'd read the second book, this one was enough for me. I don't think the romance was developed well either.

  2. Norah Jones or Nora Grey? You might have a revolt on your hands if a group of over fifties easy listening music lovers stumble across your blog.

    She sounds like an utter whine hole. I don't know if it's because I'm less tolerable as I get older, or that the more I read, the more I expect from characters. I'm not surprised you were eager to read this, the synopsis makes it sound like a psychological thriller almost. Anyone could be a killer. But all evil people have big googly eyes like a chia pet and noses to match? What the eff is that kind of shit? All ugly people are evil? Come on lady, Sophie Jordan doesn't even sound like she's trying with that one.

    Brilliant review Jeann, unfortunately not touching this one with a 10 foot pole 😀
    Kelly recently posted…The Bookish Best Of… Pretty Covers of 2014My Profile

    • Oh dear, I might have gotten the name wrong HAHA! Thanks for the pick up, I don't think anyone else mentioned that lol!

      Oh my gosh I just wanted to slap her. I wish we had a good character slapping device handy so we could reach in and knock some sense into these people. It had such a great premise but overall it was just so frustrating.

  3. Yeah, this book was . . . IDK. Not what I expected? Or not what I wanted, I guess.

    It did pick up toward the end though, which I liked. But I don't think that could make up for the beginning / middle, which was too slow and predictable.

    AND YES DAVY. She was the most effing judgemental one!!! I did not understand that at ALL

  4. Mhmm that really made her sound like a hypocrite… I thought the premise of this book very interesting. Being able to identify killer genes is a science advance I can totally imagine, and the ramifications of a discovery like that is truly mind-buggling. Though an unlikable protagonist is pretty much a deal breaker for me with books, especially a whiny one. I have zero patience to sit through that… Such a shame :/
    Angel @ Spare Reads recently posted…Review: Perfect Lies (Mind Games, #2)My Profile

    • Yeah, hypocrite is probably a good word for how she acted and she was like that all the way through. She was just so unlikable unfortunately. It is a shame because the premise was really interesting 🙁

  5. Yeah, I ended up sitting kind of on the fence with this one, too. It definitely had a lot potential (loved the idea of it) but it was pretty much basic dystopian novel (and arg whinny characters ruin everything). Haven't decided if I wanted to read book 2 yet, but since it is only a duology, maybe, haha. Great review, Jeann!
    Cyn @ Book Munchies recently posted…Bookish Questions, Part 1My Profile

  6. Aww…I personally adored this one Jeann, so I'm sorry to hear you didn't like it as much as I did. 🙁 But I can completely see where you're coming from – Davvy's whining definitely was a bit annoying at times and it was a bit odd to see how she was prejudiced to people with the same gene as here. Sorry this wasn't for you, and I hope your next read is better! <3
    Zoe @ The Infinite T recently posted…Snow Like AshesMy Profile

  7. I wanted to read this one so bad when it came out but all I kept seeing was mixed reviews so I stayed away from this one. While I love the idea of the kill gene and how this book explores discriminations and prejudice I'm not a fan of whiny protagonists and plots that go too fast or too slow. *shakes head* Nope, this one isn't for me. Hopefully your enjoy your next read better Jeann!
    Lily recently posted…Snow Like Ashes(Snow Like Ashes #1): ReviewMy Profile

    • Yeah, it took me ages to actually pick it up because of all the negative reviews. But I still had to review it so grabbed it when I found it at the library. Thanks Lily!

  8. GAH Whiny protagonists are a big no-no for me. I'm going to stay far, far away from this one. Rush endings also suck. Especially when the story is picking up because then you're just tricked into thinking that we're going somewhere worth it, you know? Its a shame this book was a let down but thank you for the honest review, Jeann! x
    Jess @My Reading Dre recently posted…Is the Happily Ever After Purely About Romance or Does It Really Just Want Justice?My Profile

    • Good idea Jess, whiny protagonists should be a thing of the past but alas, they are not unfortunately. It was so frustrating Jess!

  9. Ugh! Your review alone is making me cringe. I can't stand whiners, and I feel like this girl would SO get on my nerves. I was originally drawn to the cover of this, but honestly, I really don't think I'll ever end up reading it. It just doesn't seem like something I would enjoy. Maybe others really enjoyed this one, but I think I'm going to pass. Sorry it wasn't a winner for you. 🙁
    Lisa @ Lost in Liter recently posted…Lost in Our Thoughts: The Dreaded Reading Slump!My Profile

    • Yeah, she definitely got on mine throughout the book. The cover was interesting but it just didn't have any relevance whatsoever! Fair enough Lisa, good call.

  10. Thanks for your honest review. I've had this one on my shelf for a while now but that plot makes me feel iffy. And now that you've mentioned the behavior of the main character, I've pushed this book further down my TBR pile. When I'm in the mood for whiny I'll probably pick it up. Thanks again for the forewarning.
    Shane @ Itching for recently posted…Review: Eternally by Rae HachtonMy Profile

    • No problems Shane, it was a really frustrating read but I really just wanted to get the review out of the way you know? Hope you enjoy it better than I did.

  11. Whining is paaaainful. GAH. I get so sick of characters who do nothing but mope and act like spoilt brats. Judging is also annoying, although I get that it's part of the character sometimes. >.> To be honest, I've never heard anything good about this book yet, so it's not top of my wish-list or anything. I think I would take a peek at it one day but….not a priority. Pity. The premise is awesome.
    Cait @ Notebook Sist recently posted…13 Best Book Beginnings Of EverMy Profile

    • Oh it really is, and why anyone would want to read that for the whole book is beyond me. I don't mind judging so much but have some understanding for your own kind. It was so frustrating.

  12. I've always been hesitant to read this one because I was afraid of the same things you just mentioned here… plus, the premise is really too ridiculous and laughable for me to take seriously ^^;; What I hate the most about characters finding themselves in an unwanted circumstance is the self-loathing and self-pity they go through. A bit of that is understandable, but going too much about it is just exhausting.
    Faye M. recently posted…ARC Review: How We Fall by Kate BrauningMy Profile

    • Oh my gosh Faye it was so annoying. I was intrigued with the premise but it just was really annoying the way it was executed you know? It persevered during the entire book as well which was annoying.