I recently read the book, "Beat" by Jared Garrett. I was really looking forward to it because I've been impressed with what Adam Sidwell and Future House Publishing have put out. Adam even says that if you liked Hunger Games, you'll like this one.
While it was a good story, with driving action and suspense, at times, I didn't find a comparison to Hunger Games nearly accurate.
This is a great book for a teenager who wants an exciting book with action and tension. For a teenager who is analytical or an adult who is marginally familiar with statistics it could only be considered an average read--too many plot holes and far too many bullets for a fifteen-year-old boy to survive.
I'll try to avoid spoilers...
The premise is fun but a little too simple to work. Ninety percent of humanity is wiped out by a bug that kills when a victim's heart rate exceeds 140 to 150 beats per minute. This happened about 100 years before Nik Granjer rides his bike through New Frisko, a calm and controlled reproduction of the former, but now dead, city. I got the impression that the infection came during out current era. By my calculation there should have been over 700 million people left on earth; many more than seem to be left in this society.
This was the first thing that challenged my ability to suspend disbelief. With only ten percent of humanity left there would not be enough infrastructure left to not only continue the existing level of technology, but actually advance way beyond that.
Some simple things threw me off as well. Like the redwood trees and seeing snow on the mountains. I got the impression that the New Frisko was near the old one. You can't see any mountains with snow on them from anywhere near San Francisco and the redwood forests he describes would have to have grown up since the Infektion, about 100 years before. For trees to grow the size he describes, they would need closer to 1000 years.
The story is told in the first person point of view. I'm not a big fan. As a result, the middle twenty percent of the story drags as Nik "notices" and "realizes" things, and processes his thoughts over and over, and develops his theories.
Finally hooking up with a friend, the story picks up its pace again and becomes more interesting.
The author alters some spelling conventions under the pretense that these letters have been outlawed to simplify communication. I found these misspellings distracting and inconsistent.
Overall, the pace is fast with interesting--though not always believable--details. As I said at the beginning, a great read for a teenage boy.