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Monday, August 29, 2016

The Thousandth Floor by Katherine McGee

One hundred years in the future, an engineering marvel in the middle of New York City is where everyone wants to live. The tower has a thousand floors and a person could truly live their whole life without leaving the building. Social status is determined by the floor you live on, but of course, "The higher you are, the farther you fall." The author's imagination stretches sky high as she delves into the secret lives of New York's new elite.

This debut novel features multiple characters, giving us a glimpse of teen lives in this new New York's social scene. The top floors, where the social elite live, is full of glamour, money and sophistication. Avery and her family live on floor 1000, their penthouse apartment the envy of everyone in the building. Avery is supposed to be the perfect human, her DNA engineered with the best her two parents had to offer. She's beautiful, sweet and intelligent, but Avery feels less than perfect. In love with a boy she could never have, her junior year of high school isn't turning out the way she wanted. She and her best friend Leda are drifting further and further apart because of their attraction to the same boy and because of secrets Leda refuses to reveal.

Leda's addiction to stimulant drugs sent her to rehab during the summer and it's a situation she doesn't want to share with anyone. I think she's strong enough to admit that she has a problem, but she would never admit to anyone that it's affecting her life. Pressure at school, parties and alcohol are constant reminders of her stint with drugs especially since money and connections is all you need to get your hands on your next fix. And Leda definitely has access to both.

Leda's problems seem small when compared to other teens. Rylin lives on the 32nd floor with just her sister. After losing their mother, she had to drop out of school in order to support herself and her sister. She's barely scrapping by with a minimum wage job and the lack of money and health care debts are constant reminders that she could be ejected from her apartment any day. So when her mom's old employer, an orphaned teen living in one of the top floor apartments, calls her when he needs her help to serve and clean at his party, she jumps at the chance for easy and fast money. But when her one-time gig turns into something more, Rylin can't help but develop strong feelings for Cord, a boy way above her social status.

These are just quick glimpses into the world of some of these teens. There are so many point of views that it made it really hard to get into the book, but once every story is established, it becomes easier to read. We also follow the story of Eris, a girl that used to live on floor 985 and now lives on 103. Watt also lives on the lower floors but his hacking abilities has given him a glimpse into the lives of the elite teens, which makes him curious enough to try to rub shoulders with them. Atlas, Avery's older brother, "disappeared" for over a year, only checking in with his family from time to time to let them know that he was still alive. Now that he's back, living in the tower, he's dealing with the secrets and feelings he ran away from in the first place.

I liked the novel quite a bit but it was far from my favourites. I loved the technological advances and the architecture behind the tower. The idea is complete fiction since I highly doubt Central Park could ever be considered for the location of such a building. Also, the tallest building in our present time has 154 floors so 1000 is far from reality. I've never really been a fan of Gossip Girl or Pretty Little Liars, and The Thousandth Floor definitely feels like those books/TV series. The elite social scene, the glamour of New York, drugs/alcohol/parties make for interesting stories but personally, it was to much "teen drama" for me. I hope the characters mature in the next books because I might have to give up on this series like I did with Gossip Girl and Pretty Little Liars.

On a side note, I'm glad the cover was redesigned. The original one (left) was nice, but I think the new one (middle), represents the glamour of the tower a lot better. The UK version (right) is very attractive but similar to so many other YA covers. How many covers with a girl in a dress will we have to go through before this fad is over? The middle one remains my favourite and it's definitely gender neutral. Which one is your favourite?

the thousandth floor 0.5    the thousandth floor    the thousandth floor uk


Tynga is a 32 years old mom of two, from Montreal, working as a lab technician in an hospital specialized in heart disease. In her free time, she enjoys reading all things Paranormal and photography.

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2 People left their mark' :

  1. I really want to give this one a try! Hopefully the multiple POVs don't make me want to give up :P

  2. The middle cover is my favorite, too. Your review was great and went through all my concerns about teen angst but still left the appeal of the book itself.