Review: Countdown by Michelle Rowen

Publisher: Harlequin TEEN

Genre: Sci-Fi & Fantasy, Teen & YA

Series:  None

Pages: 336

Release Date: September 24th, 2013

Rating: coffee cup iconcoffee cup iconcoffee cup iconcoffee cup icon

Summary from Goodreads:

3 seconds left to live. Once the countdown starts, it cannot be stopped. 

2 pawns thrown into a brutal underground reality game.

Kira Jordan survived her family’s murder and months on plague-devastated city streets with hard-won savvy and a low-level psi ability. She figures she can handle anything. Until she wakes up in a barren room, chained next to the notorious Rogan Ellis.

1 reason Kira will never, ever trust Rogan. Even though both their lives depend on it.

Their every move is controlled and televised for a vicious exclusive audience. And as Kira’s psi skill unexpectedly grows and Rogan’s secrets prove ever more deadly, Kira’s only chance of survival is to risk trusting him as much as her instincts. Even if that means running head-on into the one trap she can’t escape.



coffee to go

Coffee To Go: If you want a quick, fun adrenaline shot, this book is for you. It’s gritty and doesn’t sugarcoat the deadliness of Countdown. Did I mention psychic powers and implants? How about having to trust a convicted murderer to survive? The story rushes through the plot a little too quickly for me, but there’s non-stop action, secrets, and sci-fi, all of which combine to make the perfect rainy day read.


Kira: This girl is a hot mess. I’m not sure whether I like her or not. She doesn’t necessarily change over the course of the novel, but the reader does get to know her better. She’s a bit unrealistic and changes her mind a lot, but if you like spunk and attitude and fierceness she’s your girl! Oh, and sarcasm. Her sarcasm is hilarious!

Rogan: Definitely my favorite character. He will surprise you over and over again! He has such a crazy story. The best part? He’s not perfect. Thank goodness. He has some serious skeletons in his closet and feels tons of guilt. That said, it’s a really interesting journey to see the true Rogan come out. You will find some definite “squeal” and “swoon” moments with Rogan.

The World—

Full of rust and overcast skies. Odd, yes, but that’s my mental picture. The book cover gives you a pretty good taste of the setting. Kira’s city is one that nobody wants to live in, which is why she wants so badly to go to the Colony! The sci-fi technology is very creative. I remember putting my iPad down for a moment when I learned about the implants because my brain couldn’t handle all of the awesome-ness. YES, IMPLANTS. Let that sink in…okay, good. The world has a neatly tied up history and makes for a great setting, especially for the type of game Kira and Rogan play.

Final Thoughts—

I liked it well enough. It didn’t give me an “OMG I love this and I want to read it again every day” feeling, but it did keep me on my toes and interested in Kira and Rogan’s fates. Other minor characters come along, but they’re more plot device than dynamic character. That’s okay though—Rowen uses them effectively. Warning: if you want a story in which you can fall in love with the characters and the world, this probably isn’t for you. It could be, but usually that’s reserved for series. Countdown has a pretty rushed feel to it. But once again, if you like sci-fi, READ this book. I can’t tell you more about the sci-fi aspect without spoilers, but it gets CRAY. And it’s totally logical in Kira and Rogan’s world. LOVE THAT.

Memorable Quotes—

“He eyed me as if I might do something else utterly unexpected—either kiss him or kill him.”

“But what I felt right now—it was real.  No drugs required.”

***This book was provided by the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated in any way.


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: Inhuman by Kat Falls – Review | Aussie Bookworm
  2. Trackback: Review: Countdown | Giraffe Days

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