Synopsis:1. Never trust anyone 2. Remember they are always searching 3. Don’t get involved 4. Keep your head down 5. Don’t fall in love. Five simple rules. Ariane Tucker has followed them since the night she escaped from the genetics lab where she was created, the result of combining human and extraterrestrial DNA. Ariane’s survival—and that of her adoptive father—depends on her ability to blend in among the full-blooded humans in a small Wisconsin town, to hide in plain sight at her high school from those who seek to recover their lost (and expensive) “project.”
But when a cruel prank at school goes awry, it puts her in the path of Zane Bradshaw, the police chief’s son and someone who sees too much. Someone who really sees her. After years of trying to be invisible, Ariane finds the attention frightening—and utterly intoxicating. Suddenly, nothing is simple anymore, especially not the rules…
My Review: I've loved Stacey Kade's books since she first put out the Ghost and the Goth, so naturally I jumped at the chance to read this. I definitely was not disappointed. Kade's really branched out from her kind of peppy genre with sassy characters. The Rules definitely had a more serious tone, and I absolutely loved it.
Ariane's one goal in life is to blend in. To hide her almost white hair, her small frame, her unusually sharp cheekbones, and her near pitch black eyes. The Rules help her do just that. She stays inconspicuous, out of the lime light. She only has one friend and even that's hard to maintain, because what's truly important is to not slip up. Ariane is hiding in plain sight and her life is a charade, because she's not entirely human. Ariane has lived by the rules for ten years. Ten years of managing to slip under the radar, right under the noses of those who want her captured. That is until the day that Ariane can't reign in her feelings any longer. Daring to stand up to the most popular and intimidating girl at school in defense of her friend, Ariane isn't so invisible any more. She comes to the attention of Zane, part of the popular crowd, and despite how hard she tries, she can't help but relish in the attention he is suddenly giving her.
I really loved Ariane. She may play the meek and quiet girl, but in reality she is a fierce individual who will not stand for people picking on others who are weaker than them. She's quick witted, stubborn, and truly a fiery personality. She just doesn't take bull shit and calls others out on it. What truly made me love Ariane was her willingness to take a chance and open herself up to others. She was kept in a lab until she was six years old, basically poked and prodded like a lab rat every single day. She tends to shy away from people because of it, and avoids physical contact at all costs. And yet when she and Zane start their rocky friendship, she opens herself up and trusts him to not hurt her. She's gone through incredible trauma, but she doesn't let it dictate her life. That really made her a strong character in my eyes.
I really loved Zane as well. Both Zane and Ariane are broken to some degree, hurt by people in their lives that should have protected them. While Zane used to sit back and let his friends mock and tease others, he's changed. He's sickened by their childish actions and really starts to stand up for himself. He can't help but be fascinated with Ariane, the only person who has ever dared stand up to his friend Rachel. Soon curiosity turns into outright infatuation, and Zane isn't the only one who's falling fast. He really was a great guy, and I enjoyed his narrative just as much as Ariane's.
I really enjoyed the plot for this as well. It definitely threw me for some loops. While a few things caught me off guard, I got back on my feet quickly. One in particular was pretty devastating to think of the implications. Both Zane and Ariane received some nasty surprises, but in the end things worked out for the better. It was well paced and the length was just right in my opinion. The story happens in a relatively short amount of time, but I wasn't left dying for more pages. Perfectly paced.
I'm really excited to see where this series goes. I really enjoy Kade's writing, and I've pretty much fallen in love with Ariane and her story. I'm sure the sequels will be just as fantastic.