What’s Left Of Me by Kat Zhang Audiobook Review

What's Left Of Me by Kat Zhang audiobook cover

Book: What’s Left Of Me by Kat Zhang, Harper Audio, Sept. 18, 2012

Book Info: YA Sci-Fi, Audiobook purchase from Audible. Running time: 9 hrs, 37 mins. Read by: Kim Mai Guest

Rating: 4 / 5 Stars

More Info: Goodreads | Audible

What’s Left Of Me by Kat Zhang is a harrowing book about identity and ethics. It’s set in an alternate reality where everyone is born with two souls. Once one of the souls dominates, the other fades out of existence. But sometimes the souls don’t settle, and the souls continue to co-exist long past the acceptable time frame. The government considers this condition highly dangerous, so much so that these “hybrids” are institutionalized. Wow- this book is unsettling! I thought I was going into a dystopian book, but what I got was more of a sci-fi/horror mash-up. I listened to the audiobook and that made it even more chilling. Lots to think about with this one.

Addie and Eva are two souls living in the same body. They take turns controlling their body and are treated as individuals as children. However, once they turn 6 or so, one of the souls should have become stronger and taken over the body. This did not happen though, and their parents and teachers are concerned and seek medical advice. To protect themselves from being labeled a hybrid, Addie and Eva decide to let Addie assume the dominant role and pretend that Eva has faded away. So now, the only person that knows Eva is still around is Addie, and she sees everyone close to her move on without her.

It is a lonely existence for Eva, as we discover through her narration. She can’t participate in life so thinks it would be better if she actually could disappear, but she does have this powerful bond with her sister and helps her in a lot of ways. I felt more sympathetic towards Eva since her own parents don’t acknowledge her and she is so alone. But Addie also feels guilt about the situation and has complex feelings about it in general. They meet some people that recognize the situation they are in and present some opportunities to them- is it possible that they could share possession of the same body? Doesn’t this sound like a horror film?

The characters make this book stand out. Eva and Addie are presented as two distinct individuals with clear voices and their own personalities. Their struggle is heart breaking and I was rooting for them to find a way for them to co-exist. Though I didn’t get a lot of the answers I sought in terms of the why’s and how’s just getting to know the characters was an intense and satisfying experience in itself. There is a little bit of romance in the book, but it’s not a huge part of the story at all. It actually brings up some questions about how Eva and Addie would handle relationships considering they share a body.

Kim Mai Guest reads the audiobook (she also narrated Anna and the French Kiss.) She differentiates the voices and personalities of Eva and Addie so I was never confused about who was speaking. I don’t know if that ever gets confusing in the book version. Her voice is clear and she gives just enough inflection to the characters without overdoing it. Her pace is good too- I always think an audiobook is successful if I don’t notice the narration too much, and that is the case with this book.

An impressive debut from Kat Zhang, and it’s hard to believe this is her first book. She wrote this book in high school, which makes it all the more impressive. Since this is the first book in a series, I suspect a lot more world-building questions will be answered in the next book, and I’ll be reading it.

Ornament

11 thoughts on “What’s Left Of Me by Kat Zhang Audiobook Review

  1. BermudaOnion says:

    It seems like I read another book where bodies had two souls but it doesn’t sound like it was as good as this one.

  2. Kelly says:

    Great review, Lucy 🙂 and I love the trailer that you’ve included.

    My TBR and Amazon wishlist have really grown today after seeing some amazing books. I had What’s Left of Me on my TBR anyway as it was a W.o.W for me a couple of months ago. I have just bought it on Amazon for £5 which is a bargain!

    Audible.co.uk don’t have the same selection of audiobooks that Audible.com have which is always a pain as I’d like to listen to more audiobooks. It’s quite a new thing for me to get in to.

    1. Lucy says:

      Glad you found a great deal on the book! Looking forward to hearing what you think of it. Audiobooks can be very expensive and I try to find them at the library when I can.

  3. Candice says:

    I’ve heard lots of great things about this one, and I especially like the idea of two souls in one body – definitely gives you a lot of think about!

  4. vmcarswell says:

    The idea behind this one is so interesting, there is no way I could pass it up. It also sounds like it will be a lot deeper than I thought. It is also impressive that she wrote this book in high school. As one who wants to be a publishes author, I’m jealous, lol. I love the cover for this book and I don’t think there could have been one more perfect. I can’t wait to read it!

    1. Lucy says:

      I’m jealous of her too- she’s such an accomplished writer already. The book flows so well I was surprised to find out the author’s age after I finished the book. And the cover is really cool, isn’t it? Hope you enjoy the book when you get the chance to read it.

  5. This sounds SO cool!! Great review totally sold me on it!

  6. I haven’t heard of this one before, but it is right up my alley. I love books with that kind of sci-fi spin. I’ll be adding this one to the wish list for sure!

  7. fishgirl182 says:

    i really like the premise of this book. it’s definitely unique and kind of creepy sounding, glad that you enjoyed it. i have an arc so i’ll have to let you know if it’s confusing going between the two at all.

  8. […] at The Reading Date had a review of the audiobook of What’s Left of Me this week. It reminded me that this was a Waiting on Wednesday book for me a couple of months ago […]

  9. […] What’s Left of Me by Kat Zhang. Narrated by Kim Mai Guest. From my review: (Guest’s) voice is clear and she gives just enough inflection to the characters without overdoing it. Her pace is good too- I always think an audiobook is successful if I don’t notice the narration too much, and that is the case with this book. […]

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