As a reader who is incredibly fond of YA thrillers, when a copy of Nemesis fell into my hands, I was beyond excited to start reading. Having never read anything else by Brendan Reichs, I wasn’t sure exactly what I was in for, but once I started reading, I knew there was absolutely no way I was putting this book down until I finished it!
“The sun rises. But not for me.
I know what day it is.
Will he come sooner, or later?
I don’t know, but it doesn’t matter.
And when he does, I’ll die.”
Min has been dealing with a horrifying ordeal ever since she was eight years old – every other year (even ages – her 8th, 10th, 12th, 14th, and 16th birthdays) a man in a suit and silver sunglasses shows up and kills her. The method in which he kills her is always different – pushing her over a cliff, shooting – it varies each year, but the outcome is always the same. Min is killed, and then she wakes up in the middle of a clearing in the woods, completely fine, without a scratch on her.
As Min goes through her everyday life, she makes sure not to tell anyone what happens to her – after all, no one believed her as a child, so why would they believe her now? But she’s still stuck dealing with the confusing situation that she finds herself in every other year – the man in the suit and glasses shows up and kills her. While she has been seeing a psychiatrist and taking medication for this for years, she definitely knows that all of this is real, even if no one else believes her.
When things start to get a little strange, she gets her best friend, Tack, to help her break into her psychiatrist’s office, only to find out some weird stuff on Project Nemesis – a strange thing that she is part of, along with the rest of her class. She finds out that her psychiatrist has a special file on her, though, along with another student in her class – Noah.
Noah and Min don’t really talk, as they run in different social circles (well, to be honest, Min and Tack hated Noah’s group, because they were the jocks and cheerleaders that treated the two of them like trash), so when Min decides to talk to Noah about what’s going on, she isn’t surprised that he doesn’t really want to talk to her. However, after a while, when weird things start happening with him, too, he’s more than willing to talk to Min to try and get to the bottom of things. After all, the man in the suit and glasses shows up every two years to kill Noah, too – and he and Min share the same birthday.
So what is Project Nemesis? And who is the guy who has been murdering both Min and Noah every other year on their birthday?
“The world might be about to end, but what did I care?
My world ended all the time.”
Together Min, Noah, and Tack work to get to get to the bottom of Project Nemesis, and what they uncover is something that will change their lives forever.
Nemesis is a dark and moody thriller that I thought was exceptionally enjoyable. I loved the characters – even the popular kids like Ethan and Sarah, who made Min and Tack’s life miserable in school, because they were the “rich” kids and Min and Tack lived in a trailer park. Tack was such a great best friend, and he wasn’t your typical “cookie cutter best friend” character like you see in so many books. He actually had a really great personality that added a lot to the book.
Nemesis is told from two different viewpoints – Min and Noah. The first section of the book is told from Min’s point of view, the second is told from Noah’s point of view, and the rest of the book has alternating chapters between the two. This was such a great way to write the book, because it gives us a deeper look into both Min and Noah’s worlds, allowing us to see the common ground that connects them. While their personalities seemed somewhat similar, I had no problems figuring out which character’s viewpoint I was reading.
The book ends with an explosive conclusion that doesn’t really answer many questions at all, which leaves plenty of room for the story to continue in the next book. The mystery will hopefully unravel itself a bit more in the next book, and I really do hope that all the characters from this book will be back, and that it will continue where it left off. The answers that we did get I honestly didn’t see coming.
In terms of YA thrillers, Nemesis is probably one of the best that I’ve read to date. It not only brought me out of a reading slump, but I think it may have put me back in one because it was so amazing! I rarely rate a book 5 stars, but I can’t recommend this one enough!
Also, check out the nifty mood board that I made for the book and get a feeling for the overall vibe of the story!