Review: Split Second

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: Split SecondSplit Second by Kasie West
Series: Pivot Point #2
Published by HarperTeen on February 11, 2014
Genres: Paranormal, Romance
Pages: 368
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
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four-half-stars

Life can change in a split second.

Addie hardly recognizes her life since her parents divorced. Her boyfriend used her. Her best friend betrayed her. She can’t believe this is the future she chose. On top of that, her ability is acting up. She’s always been able to Search the future when presented with a choice. Now she can manipulate and slow down time, too . . . but not without a price.

When Addie’s dad invites her to spend her winter break with him, she jumps at the chance to escape into the Norm world of Dallas, Texas. There she meets the handsome and achingly familiar Trevor. He’s a virtual stranger to her, so why does her heart do a funny flip every time she sees him? But after witnessing secrets that were supposed to stay hidden, Trevor quickly seems more suspicious of Addie than interested in her. And she has an inexplicable desire to change that.

Meanwhile, her best friend, Laila, has a secret of her own: she can restore Addie’s memories . . . once she learns how. But there are powerful people who don’t want to see this happen. Desperate, Laila tries to manipulate Connor, a brooding bad boy from school—but he seems to be the only boy in the Compound immune to her charms. And the only one who can help her.

As Addie and Laila frantically attempt to retrieve the lost memories, Addie must piece together a world she thought she knew before she loses the love she nearly forgot . . . and a future that could change everything.

There is a special place in my heart for those authors who can turn out quality book after quality book at a quick pace. Of course, I love the authors who write their beautiful novels slowly, but the Kasie Wests of the world, who can write two delightful, feels-inducing novels a year? They keep me in happy things to read, and I thank them for it. This is my third Kasie West book, and I feel like she can do no wrong with me. Split Second is every bit as fun, humorous and swoony as Pivot Point and The Distance Between Us.

Split Second begins heavy on the dramatic irony. The reader is the only one who knows the truth of what happened in the other outcome of Addie’s search, and the reader desperately wants her to remember. Having watched Trevor and Addie fall in love slowly over the course of Pivot Point, they now no longer really know each other, and the reader is in an agony of need for them to just kiss already.

At first, I wasn’t thrilled about the addition of Laila’s POV to Split Second. Generally, I’m pretty heavily opposed to the addition of a perspective later in a series. In this case, though, it really worked. Getting to be in Laila’s head is a treat, because, as much as I love Addie, I think I like Laila even more. She’s so sassy and confident. Plus, by being in both heads, it’s even more obvious how much Laila and Addie really do care about one another. I friendship it, guys.

Another excellent element of Split Second is the depths of characterization given to bad guys from Pivot Point. Stephanie, who was Trevor’s mean girl ex-girlfriend in Pivot Point, is shown in an entirely different light in Split Second. It’s really nice to get her side of the story, and show that she wasn’t truly a terrible person. Similarly, Duke, while not exactly redeemed, gains in complexity, and becomes a bit less of the jerk he was before. I love how Kasie West added these elements of redemption.

Kasie West writes romance so perfectly. I ship both ships in this book SO hard. She has this brilliant way of putting so much tension into the relationships, even the shorter time spans offered by Split Second. Addie and Trevor still have so much in common and get along so well. Connor and Laila share a quick wit and are adorably snarky to one another. Plus, Kasie West’s kiss scenes. I can’t even. West manages to deliver cheesy lines in a totally non-cheesy way, and to make me believe them in a way I usually have trouble doing.

The plot is, minus some issues I’ll reference next, even better than Pivot Point‘s. Where Pivot Point hinged on that one search, Split Second follows Addie’s evolving abilities in time manipulation. She can now slow time down, an ability which proves very helpful in her attempts to discover family secrets and what happened in the alternate timeline she didn’t take. Since everything that happens in Split Second actually happens, it’s a bit more immediate and intense.

As a series conclusion, though, I’m less sold on Split Second. As a second book in a series, it’s brilliant, but I don’t feel like it’s closed the door on this world. However, from what I’ve heard, there will not be any more books in the Pivot Point series. An open-ended ending can be a good thing, but, in this case, it felt abrupt and the characters are left in rather tenuous circumstances. As Blythe (Finding Bliss in Books) said in our discussion, an epilogue to close out a bit of the future would really have tied everything together. There are just so many things on ability advancement that are raised but not really handled.

It should really say a lot that my biggest problem with the series is that I wish there was more of it. I wholeheartedly love the characters and world Kasie West created in Pivot Point, and think that I actually enjoyed Split Second even more. These books are ideal for character-driven readers, and an excellent choice for contemporary readers looking for a safe gateway into other genres.

Favorite Quote:

“I’m not a very good awkwardness buffer. I kind of create awkwardness.”

Tl;dr – Review in a GIFfy:

shipping goggles on

9 responses to “Review: Split Second”

  1. Stormy says:

    I am looking forward to this book that I actually pre-ordered it(which I never do!).
    I’m glad to hear that Laila’s perspective worked well. It’s one of the few things I’ve been nervous about with this book. I mean, I want to trust Kasie West and all since she has yet to let me down, but I’m not really a fan of adding another point of view later on most of the time. I liked Laila in Pivot Point, but wasn’t sure if I liked her enough to want to be inside her head for half of this story.
    And I’m quite curious about what happens to Duke & Stephanie’s characters! They will be interesting to see again for sure.
    Stormy recently posted…Book Review: Cruel Beauty by Rosamund HodgeMy Profile

    • Christina Franke says:

      Yeah, I generally think if someone’s going to be a POV character at some point, they should start out that way. It’s a bit off-putting to me as a reader. Laila’s really awesome, I promise. She’s sassier and more daring than Addie, and they’re such good friends.

  2. Ohh, an epilogue. That would have been really nice because I really thought there might have been a book three by the way it did end. It wasn’t a terrible ending, but I WANT MORE.
    Steph Sinclair recently posted…Review: Defy by Sara B. LarsonMy Profile

  3. Yay I’m so happy that you loved this one! I got an ARC of this as a Christmas present and after reading your review I’m even more eager to begin reading it as soon as possible. I usually don’t have a preference with whether or not the book starts with another perspective in the middle of a series, but if it’s done well I’m all for it! I’m glad that in this case, that was what happened. Also, the fact that two romances can build up in such a short time but still be convincing and adorable makes me so happy. Ahh now I’m definitely going to start reading Split Second soon. Fantastic review, Christina! <33
    Eileen @ Singing and Reading in the Rain recently posted…Uninvited by Sophie JordanMy Profile

  4. Kelly says:

    You just broke my heart by telling me that this is the end of the series; I always assume when there’s more than one book, that it’s going to be at least a trilogy.

  5. Yes yes yes. You have pretty much all of my thoughts in this review, and it’s all perfect. Except I had the probably with the whole “You’re in love with Connor!” thing, which made Laila actually fall in love with Connor. But still, yes. Yes to perfect romances, yes to a plot better than Pivot Point’s, yes to an epilogue…yes yes yes.

    yes yes.
    Blythe Harris recently posted…Waiting on Wednesday – The MercilessMy Profile

  6. Wait this is a duology? I did not know that. I general I think it’s awesome that more authors are willing to end their series after only two books, rather than allowing them to go on and on. Lacking a sense of full closure is not fun, though. Maybe West can be convinced to write an epilogue on her site or something?
    I haven’t read The Distance Between Us, but I enjoyed Pivot Point a lot more than I was expecting to. I’m generally not a fan of multiple POVs (especially those added later), but I’m curious to see where West goes with this story. Your review bodes well for my reading experience. Fingers crossed!
    Amanda @ Late Nights with Good Books recently posted…Review: Everneath by Brodi AshtonMy Profile

  7. Danielle says:

    Wow this sounds like a really well developed conclusion (minus the lack of epilogue). I wasn’t *too* worried because it’s Kasie West but still…you never know so I’m glad this worked for you. I do think I need to reread PP because I was like “who’s Stephanie?” #facepalm Yay for awesome romance too! Can’t wait for all the feels.
    Danielle recently posted…The Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarty (Review)My Profile

  8. Missie says:

    Great review! I am super excited to read this!
    Missie recently posted…Curtsies & ConspiraciesMy Profile

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