I picked this book up while browsing through the teen section in a library I'd never been to before early last year. I read 47 pages of right there. It pulled me in like none of the other books I'd tried did. Starting with the description of a death by drowning will do that. We're not even told why he's in the water to begin with, he's just there drowning and we have to go with it.
That was one thing that was clever but also frustrating about the book. How things are revealed. There's lots of surprises throughout the story, some of them a bit predictable, but more often unexpected. I never knew how Seth &co. would resolve it all.
However, the number of times the author has Seth stop suddenly and start running somewhere for some reason he won't tell the reader becomes kind of annoying. He could easily insert a few words of explanation but instead has to draw out the suspense by cutting off the sentence with em dashes, or having characters put off discussing a topic until later.
I liked the use of present tense, and thought it was a good choice for the narrative. It made the impact of the story much more immediate. I also liked Regine's mantra, "Know yourself and go in swinging." It's a good mindset.
Not bad, but not the best writing out there either. I could tell within the first few pages that this could've used another proofread, especially when it comes to punctuation. The author seems not to know that questions in dialogue end with a question mark and not a comma or period.
All the characters here were pretty flat and one-dimensional, and seem driven solely by sex, even those not infected with the disease. The women were objectified the most, differentiated by breast size every time one was introduced. But the treatment of the men wasn't much better either.
All that aside, there were some redeemable qualities of the story. The pacing was good, and it was an interesting enough premise to keep me reading. The action at the climax of the story flowed pretty nicely. Also, there were some passages that had me equally aroused and disgusted at the same time, so good job on that, I guess? I mean, that's gotta take some skill.