Meadow Woodson, a fifteen-year-old girl who has been trained by her father to fight, to kill, and to survive in any situation, lives with her family on a houseboat in Florida. The state is controlled by The Murder Complex, an organization that tracks the population with precision.
The plot starts to thicken when Meadow meets Zephyr James, who is—although he doesn’t know it—one of the MC’s programmed assassins. Is their meeting a coincidence? Destiny? Or part of a terrifying strategy? And will Zephyr keep Meadow from discovering the haunting truth about her family?
It is the key to survival, the key to life.
This is one of the only times that I am glad that I read the prequel novella before reading the actual book. Now, I don't usually go for novellas, mainly because they're only available in ebooks, but I'm glad I did because it helped out to know what happens before the start of the book.
That being said, I was very much surprised by The Murder Complex and the world that Lindsay Cummings created; her writing just brought, not only the world, but the characters themselves to life. I really enjoyed seeing how much Meadow fought to be strong enough to survive in the world she lives on, and how the author was able to show not just the character's strength but also how much she cared for her family. Seriously, a pretty win-win in both character development and overall story line.
Even though the world was gritty, I enjoyed reading about it because there were so many layers to the story; the mystery surrounding Meadow's family and the Murder Complex were two of the things that really hooked me when it came to the story. I just wanted to know more; and the more the book progressed, I wanted to know if my theories were right. It was just such a well crafted book from start to finish.
Ah, Meadow and Zephyr, I found myself enjoying their weird connection within the book. But, what I enjoyed most about them would have to be the dual narration that they provided for The Murder Complex. I really enjoyed seeing the two sides of the world from their respective views. While I wasn't expecting the dual narration, I thought it enhanced the story because it gave the book more depth to see how the world and their individual roles therein would come together.
While I sometimes find dual narration to be, well, hit-and-miss most of the time, I actually really enjoyed seeing it in this book and am glad that it was there. It leaves me quite excited to see where their stories will go in the next installment.
In the end, I cannot go without saying how much I enjoyed Lindsay Cumming's writing. Her writing paired with the world and characters she created are what really made me love The Murder Complex. It was a dark, complex world and I enjoyed every minute of reading it. Definitely one of the more original dystopian-like reads I've read in a long time.
Final Verdict: The Murder Complex- A gritty, twisting and compelling read and one of my favorite debut author reads of the year.
The Murder Complex earns