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ISAN (International Sensory Assassin Network #1)

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The world has changed. Scientists warned it would happen. Meteors devastated the Earth. World Governments developed plans to help surviving citizens. The United States disbanded and salvageable land was divided into four quadrants—North, South, East, and West—governed by The Remnant Council. Struggling to survive, seventeen-year-old Ava ends up in juvenile detention, until s The world has changed. Scientists warned it would happen. Meteors devastated the Earth. World Governments developed plans to help surviving citizens. The United States disbanded and salvageable land was divided into four quadrants—North, South, East, and West—governed by The Remnant Council. Struggling to survive, seventeen-year-old Ava ends up in juvenile detention, until she is selected for a new life—with a catch. She must be injected with an experimental serum. The results will be life changing. The serum will make her better. To receive the serum Ava agrees to join a program controlled by ISAN, the International Sensory Assassin Network. While on a mission, she is abducted by a rebel group led by Rhett and told that not only does she have a history with him, but her entire past is a lie perpetuated by ISAN to ensure her compliance. Unsure of who to trust, Ava must decide if her strangely familiar and handsome captor is her enemy or her savior—and time is running out.


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The world has changed. Scientists warned it would happen. Meteors devastated the Earth. World Governments developed plans to help surviving citizens. The United States disbanded and salvageable land was divided into four quadrants—North, South, East, and West—governed by The Remnant Council. Struggling to survive, seventeen-year-old Ava ends up in juvenile detention, until s The world has changed. Scientists warned it would happen. Meteors devastated the Earth. World Governments developed plans to help surviving citizens. The United States disbanded and salvageable land was divided into four quadrants—North, South, East, and West—governed by The Remnant Council. Struggling to survive, seventeen-year-old Ava ends up in juvenile detention, until she is selected for a new life—with a catch. She must be injected with an experimental serum. The results will be life changing. The serum will make her better. To receive the serum Ava agrees to join a program controlled by ISAN, the International Sensory Assassin Network. While on a mission, she is abducted by a rebel group led by Rhett and told that not only does she have a history with him, but her entire past is a lie perpetuated by ISAN to ensure her compliance. Unsure of who to trust, Ava must decide if her strangely familiar and handsome captor is her enemy or her savior—and time is running out.

30 review for ISAN (International Sensory Assassin Network #1)

  1. 4 out of 5

    Bex (Beckie Bookworm)

    ⭐⭐⭐⭐STARS. ARC BOOK REVIEW Release Date-1/5/18 ISAN (International Sensory Assassin Network) was a read I enjoyed very much. I have been reading quite a few YA novels at the moment and this was one that intrigued me massively. So this was my first book by this particular author and "ISAN" overall was a clean YA read. The blurb initially piqued my attention in a good way and this was one I was really looking forward to getting stuck into. so if I had to split this down into parts I would say the second ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️STARS. ARC BOOK REVIEW Release Date-1/5/18 ISAN (International Sensory Assassin Network) was a read I enjoyed very much. I have been reading quite a few YA novels at the moment and this was one that intrigued me massively. So this was my first book by this particular author and "ISAN" overall was a clean YA read. The blurb initially piqued my attention in a good way and this was one I was really looking forward to getting stuck into. so if I had to split this down into parts I would say the second half of this book is of a much faster pace than the first. I would also have myself liked for the beginning of"ISAN" to be of a faster pace with maybe more in-depth world-building. For me, this would have pushed this from a four-star up into a five. But when this eventually did get going it was fast paced with plenty of action and definitely kept me on my toes throughout. With a vast array of diverse individuals "ISAN" delivers on all fronts. I am still finding my feet in regards to what is occurring and the hidden agendas buried within the narrative here, but I am also very much looking forward and ahead to where this may go in the future. The possibilities are endless and I can't wait to see where they lead. So all-though there is a romantic element here in "Isan" this very much takes a back seat in the overall storyline plot. This has more of a post-apocalyptic dystopian vibe than a romantic one and the setting hooked me right from the beginning. "ISAN" is told from Ava's POV I myself would have definitely preferred a more well-rounded perspective from multiple characters, but that's just me. I Also should mention that this is also quite a lengthy read of at least five hours and it also ended on a giant cliffhanger. I'm almost positive from this there is going to be a twist coming, there just has to be, It cant be left like that. So I found this to be a great dystopian read that also had an extremely imaginative narrative. It was a fabulous start to what I am sure will be a great new series. Eagerly awaiting the next instalment now. Thank You to the Author for providing me with an ARC of "ISAN - International Sensory Assassin Network " of which I have reviewed voluntary. All opinions expressed are entirely my own. Reviewed By Beckie Bookworm https://www.facebook.com/beckiebookworm/ www.beckiebookworm.com

  2. 4 out of 5

    Jen ♥Star-Crossed Book Blog♥

    ISAN was an explosion of action and emotion and I loved every single moment of it! From that very first page, this book had me in it's grip. I was addicted to the story and the characters, which made it impossible for me to put this book down. So if you're a fan of dystopian, kick ass girls and a sprinkling of romance then you have to check out this book! Or even if you liked the Bourne movies (one of my favorite movies!), then you'll probably enjoy this story as much as I did. ISAN is definite ISAN was an explosion of action and emotion and I loved every single moment of it! From that very first page, this book had me in it's grip. I was addicted to the story and the characters, which made it impossible for me to put this book down. So if you're a fan of dystopian, kick ass girls and a sprinkling of romance then you have to check out this book! Or even if you liked the Bourne movies (one of my favorite movies!), then you'll probably enjoy this story as much as I did. ISAN is definitely going on my favorites list and I can't recommend it enough! My destiny had been set. They owned me. They would use me. I had no choice. Right from the start we got brought into Ava's world. As the story progressed, so did our understanding of everything. It all unfolded beautifully, but be patient because there were things even Ava didn't understand. And we got to learn right along with her. Ava had found herself in juvenile detention when she was given a chance to join ISAN. ISAN was a secret organization that trained girls without much of a future, let alone any family, into killers. ISAN also used experimental drug on them to enhance their abilities. The girls constantly found themselves training with either simulations or tests. And their training was intense, page turning, and made me forget to breathe. I was completely consumed with what they were doing. But Ava started to question if ISAN was the better option. She was their killing machine and there was no way out. I’m not giving up. This isn’t over. His words echoed in my mind. Sniper haunted me while awake and in my dreams. My gut told me something wasn’t right. And the what ifs nagged at me. I shoved Sniper out of my mind. I loved Ava with my whole heart and soul! She could be so selfless and I loved how smart she was. And I was impressed that she was able to see the bigger picture during their training and missions. She was born to be a leader. So Ava quickly earned my respect and her plight easily made me connect to her. But Ava was special since she could see a map in her head, no matter where they were. And as I started to have a firm grasp on the world Ava lived in, things started to happen. Strange messages from someone named Sniper started to appear on her TAB and a comment from a higher up made her pause. He acted as though she had done something in the past, yet Ava had no recollection of it. I felt as lost and confused as Ava during those moments, but I loved every single minute of it! None of my planning mattered. When the door slid open, Rhett stood as if he knew I would be there. His eyes roamed intensely over my body, causing me to blush, and then landed on my hand with the syringe. Crap . Wearing an irresistibly sexy smirk, he planted his hands on either side of the doorway, muscles flexing, blocking me. “Going somewhere?” While out on a mission, Ava got abducted by Rhett. Rhett claimed he had a past with Ava, yet she had no clue what he was talking about. And while Ava questioned what she felt towards Rhett, I loved what little bit I knew about him. Rhett was protective and intense, but he continuously made me laugh and smile. And at the same time, my heart hurt so horribly for him. Rhett was tortured since Ava didn't remember him. I even found myself with tears in my eyes during a few of those moments. But I kept holding out hope that Ava's heart would find her way back to Rhett. Without thinking, I reached for his hand and stood next to him under the night sky, under the stars and the moon. The universe joined us in a mesmerizing moment of awe. Nothing mattered. I drifted to another place and time where Rhett and I were a real couple, and I was not an assassin, but a simple girl. So while Ava had created friendships back at ISAN, she also found herself trying to figure out how she fit in with Rhett and his crew. Well, if she even did. Ozzie was one of Rhett's friends and he made me laugh so much. He was definitely one of my favorites! Ozzie added so much light, humor and the friendship he tried to establish with Ava warmed me to the tip of my toes. He was such an adorable guy! But back at ISAN she had Brooke and Tamara who were her friends. I have a huge guess about Brooke, but time will tell!! And while Ava and I adored both Brooke and Tamara, things happened with Rhett that made her second guess everything. "....I’ll tell you this, no one in this world loves you as much as I do.” - Rhett to Ava There is SO much more that I want to say and it's going to kill me! But ISAN was the hugest surprise ever. I hoped that I would like this book, but I had no clue that I would fall head over heels in love with this story! So if you love action packed stories, strong friendships, being in the dark at times, kick ass girls, a boy with a tortured heart and a little bit of romance mixed in then definitely pick up this book. I am so excited to see what will happens next. It ended at a perfect spot, but my heart is begging for that next book to be released asap!! PS I don't care how hot Mitch was, I never liked him. Ha! *I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book, provided by Xpresso Book Tours. All thoughts and opinions are my own.* For more of my reviews, please visit:

  3. 5 out of 5

    Alice-Elizabeth (marriedtobooks)

    I was on the promotional tour for this book! Set in a divided United States, the main character Ava ends up in a detention for juvenile until one day, she is offered the chance to take a serum that will ultimately change who she is and give her a boost of powers. The catch is that by taking the serum, she must join a program known as ISAN (International Sensory Assassin Network). On missions to kidnap, kill and seek targets. On one of these missions, she meets Rhett who she knows from her past. H I was on the promotional tour for this book! Set in a divided United States, the main character Ava ends up in a detention for juvenile until one day, she is offered the chance to take a serum that will ultimately change who she is and give her a boost of powers. The catch is that by taking the serum, she must join a program known as ISAN (International Sensory Assassin Network). On missions to kidnap, kill and seek targets. On one of these missions, she meets Rhett who she knows from her past. He is part of a different gang and so, take her hostage. During this time, all the secrets start to unravel, leaving Ava with trust issues for everyone she knows and loves. This YA Dystopian I really enjoyed, starting straight away with tension and heart-racing action. Each chapter contained plot twists and turns at every corner that kept me wanting to read on till the final page. The pacing at times was a little slow, but picked up towards the end with Ava and Rhett's interactions. The ending is a cliffhanger which I was a little sad by, however, due to the writing style which I really liked as well as a range of characters, I will be picking up the next book to see where Ava's adventures take her next!

  4. 5 out of 5

    Sophie

    I thought I would love this book, but I simply didn't. The summary promised great things but the story itself wasn't that. There wasn't a lot about the world building and the plot didn't really start kicking in until nearly 50%. I found the whole book too slow. The main character, Ava, was supposed to be ""special"" but I just couldn't like her. She was a bit naive. Sometimes it seems she thought she was better than everyone else. And her actions contrasted with her thoughts. And the thing I disl I thought I would love this book, but I simply didn't. The summary promised great things but the story itself wasn't that. There wasn't a lot about the world building and the plot didn't really start kicking in until nearly 50%. I found the whole book too slow. The main character, Ava, was supposed to be ""special"" but I just couldn't like her. She was a bit naive. Sometimes it seems she thought she was better than everyone else. And her actions contrasted with her thoughts. And the thing I disliked the most, the way the girls were always lusting after every boy they saw. Poof, a new guy introduced? He's beautiful. Everyone wants him. Also why don't they question the organization they're in? Training teens to kill people--and they don't even know why they're killing them--doesn't sound really trustworthy. I think I read too much of this genre for me to really appreciate this book, but it could be the book for you.

  5. 5 out of 5

    ⇝LEAH⇜

    I usually don't rate books that I don't finish...but this one...ugh! I don't understand? The writing is juvenile and so freaking eye-roll worthy. I just couldn't go on reading this. Whiny girls getting into cat-fights, blatant butt ogling, and that's all in the first couple of chapters. Oh, and the scene where he just wants to stick a needle in her arm..."It's a volatile compressed gas that passes through the permeable layers of your skin." and she lets him because she doesn't want to look stupid I usually don't rate books that I don't finish...but this one...ugh! I don't understand? The writing is juvenile and so freaking eye-roll worthy. I just couldn't go on reading this. Whiny girls getting into cat-fights, blatant butt ogling, and that's all in the first couple of chapters. Oh, and the scene where he just wants to stick a needle in her arm..."It's a volatile compressed gas that passes through the permeable layers of your skin." and she lets him because she doesn't want to look stupid. The fuck???  I received an ARC via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Katie Harder-schauer

    My review will be posted on or near release day. Honestly, I've been waiting for the announcement of this book for a while, and I'm super excited that it's finally at least listed on Goodreads. Dystopian fans prepare.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Jonas Saul

    Okay - WOW! What a fabulous novel. I loved the main character Ava. Young, smart, and unique. The novel arc was stellar, with the story unfolding very well. I loved the era the story took place in and enjoyed how the author eased the reader into it. The imagination required for a novel like this is incredible. And Rhett! Wow - so good. Can't say enough about this one other than: Read it! Enjoy it! Well done, Mary Ting! Now, where's another novel with Ava?

  8. 5 out of 5

    Michele(mluker) Luker

    Dystopian novels are my favorite Genre, so you have NO IDEA how happy I am that Mary wrote one! Ava has had a rough time in life. However with her special DNA, a secret government agency wants her. She figures, why not, it will get her out of Juvie and possibly give her a better life...a life of an assassin. She trains vigorously, and manages to lead her own team....a team that becomes her friends. When a mission goes adrift, she is kidnapped...and begins to learn for the first time about her tru Dystopian novels are my favorite Genre, so you have NO IDEA how happy I am that Mary wrote one! Ava has had a rough time in life. However with her special DNA, a secret government agency wants her. She figures, why not, it will get her out of Juvie and possibly give her a better life...a life of an assassin. She trains vigorously, and manages to lead her own team....a team that becomes her friends. When a mission goes adrift, she is kidnapped...and begins to learn for the first time about her true self. Memories she never knew she lost, gradually comes to the surface and she is trying to piece everything together. ISAN is awash with extraordinary characters that blended beautifully together. The ingenious world seduces your imagination and makes the real world disappear, as you get consumed into the story. Bursting with action, brimming with twists that spiral out of control, ISAN will leave your imagination satisfied. An exquisite read...fun....I NEED MORE.

  9. 5 out of 5

    DawnMarie Carpintero

    5+ Stars I was given this book for my honest review. I want to say I will write my review on the day this book releases but I will give you this little bit to hold you over till then. This author brings so much to the table unlike her other books that you will be in a gasping state most of the book. She not only brings the wondrous surprises that we all have come to look upon when reading her books but she brings a calmness, jump out of your seat and awe moments with every word read. Major Kudos an 5+ Stars I was given this book for my honest review. I want to say I will write my review on the day this book releases but I will give you this little bit to hold you over till then. This author brings so much to the table unlike her other books that you will be in a gasping state most of the book. She not only brings the wondrous surprises that we all have come to look upon when reading her books but she brings a calmness, jump out of your seat and awe moments with every word read. Major Kudos and Happy screaming.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Jessi (Novel Heartbeat)

    I just can't do it anymore. Trust me, no one is more disappointed than me. I made it to 45% before I finally had to give up. The ONLY reason I managed to force myself so far through this train wreck is because this book was one of my top 5 most anticipated releases of 2018. I mean, come on, an assassin network?! The premise sounded really incredible. What I was expecting: A kickass, adrenaline-packed, edge-of-your-seat story full of awesomeness and, well, ass-kicking. What I got: Whiny, catty, bick I just can't do it anymore. Trust me, no one is more disappointed than me. I made it to 45% before I finally had to give up. The ONLY reason I managed to force myself so far through this train wreck is because this book was one of my top 5 most anticipated releases of 2018. I mean, come on, an assassin network?! The premise sounded really incredible. What I was expecting: A kickass, adrenaline-packed, edge-of-your-seat story full of awesomeness and, well, ass-kicking. What I got: Whiny, catty, bickering teenage girls. And angst. And really horrible writing. This book was juvenile to the point that it felt like Middle Grade, not Young Adult. If it weren't for the fact that they were assassins, it should have been labeled MG. And really, from what I read it could have passed as it anyway because there was little to none of that ass kicking I was hoping for - the 45% I read was basically all of the aforementioned whiny, bickering teenagers. Sorry, but I was never that immature when I was 17. There were too many things in this book that were ridiculous to the point that I rolled my eyes. Such as: 1. They're distracting us with their stench. Yes, that's right. With their stench. The other team purposely made themselves stinky so that it would be distracting to the girls hyped up on the sensory-enhancing drug, Helix. What? 2. The MC's best friend got pissed at another girl for taking too long getting her food in line. She flips her off just for that, then the girl threatened to break her fingers. And there were other scenes with similar escalating tempers. I don't know, everything just seemed overly-dramatic? Like whyyy are you getting so upset over pot roast and mashed potatoes. 3. This literal line: [He] watched me soak in his hotness. Soak in his hotness? Maybe I'm too old for this? I guess I just want something that feels a little less like reading from an angsty 14-year-old girl's perspective when I'm expecting a book supposedly about ASSASSINS. 4. In the middle of a fight: Two gunshots whiffed past me. At the same time, the bullet tore through skin, muscle, and bone. As my body slammed into his, shattering glass crashed in my ears as pain wrenched through me. I flew out the window. I didn't know which one of us had been shot. Which one of you had been shot? HOW DO YOU NOT KNOW YOU'VE BEEN SHOT?! I mean...what would I know, I've never been shot? Buuut I'm pretty sure you would feel it?? -baffled- I get that when you're hyped up on adrenaline you probably wouldn't feel pain acutely but HOW would you not know you'd been shot?! Even if the pain doesn't register you'd still be able to feel it. Right? Am I crazy?! (If anyone reading this has ever actually been shot, I'd love some insight on this subject lol) 5. Some random dude messages Ava on her Tab (iPad thingy) and asks to meet her and SHE GOES TO MEET HIM? What the actual ever loving fuck? She didn't know a thing about him (seriously, not even his real name, because he told her to call him Sniper), had like two 15 minute electronical messages with him, and when she went to a club and got a mysterious note from him that said to meet him at the back door and "don't tell anyone," wandered off alone to meet him. But it's okay because he was hot. That's a great thing to teach teenage girls. Anyway, you get the point. There were so many other irritating things in this book that I was rolling my eyes or cringing on almost every page. The prose was horribly sophomoric, even for a low end YA. This would have been too juvenile for me even when I was 17. Looks like this book has really high reviews so I must be the black sheep again...

  11. 4 out of 5

    Shelley

    *Source* NetGalley *Genre* Young Adult / Dystopian *Rating* 3.5 *Thoughts* ISAN is the first installment in author Mary Ting's International Sensory Assassin Network series. Protagonist Ava lives in a world where meteors destroyed what was once Planet Earth. In the aftermath, the US was divided into four regions; East, North, South, & West. Each region is overseen by the so called Remnant Council. Remnant Council members are supposedly secret. Then there is the International Sensory Assassin Net *Source* NetGalley *Genre* Young Adult / Dystopian *Rating* 3.5 *Thoughts* ISAN is the first installment in author Mary Ting's International Sensory Assassin Network series. Protagonist Ava lives in a world where meteors destroyed what was once Planet Earth. In the aftermath, the US was divided into four regions; East, North, South, & West. Each region is overseen by the so called Remnant Council. Remnant Council members are supposedly secret. Then there is the International Sensory Assassin Network (ISAN) who takes in those left in foster care and juvenile detention. *Full Review @ Gizmos Reviews* http://gizmosreviews.blogspot.com/201...

  12. 4 out of 5

    Koeur

    Publishing Date: May 2018 Publisher: Vesuvian Books ISBN: 9781944109560 Genre: SciFi/YA Rating: 1.4/5 Publisher’s Description: Meteors devastated the Earth. World Governments developed plans to help surviving citizens. The United States disbanded and salvageable land was divided into four quadrants—North, South, East, and West—governed by The Remnant Council. Struggling to survive, seventeen-year-old Ava ends up in juvenile detention, until she is selected for a new life—with a catch. She must be inj Publishing Date: May 2018 Publisher: Vesuvian Books ISBN: 9781944109560 Genre: SciFi/YA Rating: 1.4/5 Publisher’s Description: Meteors devastated the Earth. World Governments developed plans to help surviving citizens. The United States disbanded and salvageable land was divided into four quadrants—North, South, East, and West—governed by The Remnant Council. Struggling to survive, seventeen-year-old Ava ends up in juvenile detention, until she is selected for a new life—with a catch. She must be injected with an experimental serum. The results will be life changing. The serum will make her better. To receive the serum Ava agrees to join a program controlled by ISAN, the International Sensory Assassin Network. Review: I think I need to adjust my level of discernment in order to avoid this current deluge of YA/SciFi that keeps invading the publishing space. Anywaaay, this was another rundown on the ol’ speshul gurl/sniffing musky men with a lot of “clenching jaws” to round it out. Every girl that is part of the assassins squad has the hots for Rhett, Russ or Mitch. Of course all three guys want to bang 17 year old special gurl, Ava. The idea that indigent teenagers are recruited into a secret assassins group, is ridiculous but hey that’s showbiz. You can check out all my reviews, HERE.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer H.

    Hold on to your dust jackets because wow. I want the sequel now! *ugly cries* 😭 Ava thought she knew who she was, what she was doing, and who she could trust, but after being taken during a mission and coming face to face with Rhett (allllllll the heart eyes!) - a guy who is determined to make Ava remember him and their history - nothing in Ava's world is certain anymore. I blew through this story in less than 24 hours. ISAN grabs you from the very beginning and doesn't let up until the very end Hold on to your dust jackets because wow. I want the sequel now! *ugly cries* 😭 Ava thought she knew who she was, what she was doing, and who she could trust, but after being taken during a mission and coming face to face with Rhett (allllllll the heart eyes!) - a guy who is determined to make Ava remember him and their history - nothing in Ava's world is certain anymore. I blew through this story in less than 24 hours. ISAN grabs you from the very beginning and doesn't let up until the very end all the while making you question everything right along with Ava. The action had my heart pounding, the swoon had my pulse hammering, and that cliffhanger will give you LIFE! I was absolutely thrilled when a ISAN virtual signing went up on Good Choice Reading. Can NOT wait to get my personalized, signed copy! *Thank you to NetGalley and publisher for allowing me the opportunity to read and review!*

  14. 5 out of 5

    Amber

    Dystopian and Sci-Fi are not genres I usually read, however, I love everything Mary Ting writes. And even in genres that I don't typically read, she was still completely epic. The world she built inside the pages of ISAN was just phenomenal. Once you start, you wont be able to stop. Isan definitely has more action to it than what I'm used to reading in Mary's books but she keeps her readers on their toes and wanting more the whole way through. ISAN brings you action, drama, romance and so much m Dystopian and Sci-Fi are not genres I usually read, however, I love everything Mary Ting writes. And even in genres that I don't typically read, she was still completely epic. The world she built inside the pages of ISAN was just phenomenal. Once you start, you wont be able to stop. Isan definitely has more action to it than what I'm used to reading in Mary's books but she keeps her readers on their toes and wanting more the whole way through. ISAN brings you action, drama, romance and so much more. I completely fell in love with the characters and can't wait to see what's to come with this series. Definitely my new fave from Mary Ting.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Cindy Fong

    I have read this story twice, and each time, I am still sucked in and mesmerized by the story. Follow Ava on her journey of discovery. Ava is a trained assassin with ISAN, but when someone from her past surfacesall that she believes to be true, might all just be a facade. Stuck trying to decide what is fact and faction, Ava begins to question everything around her, her training, her friends, family and her love. I loved the storyline and the characters. I cannot wait for more in this series....

  16. 4 out of 5

    Fanna

    3.5/5 I picked up ISAN because it claimed to be a science fiction, dystopia but was pleasantly surprised to find the romance impressive enough. The story revolves around Ava who has been in ISAN (International Sensory Assassin Network) after she ran away from her foster home. ISAN, as you might be wondering, is a secret agency that trains young adults to fight and well, assassinate. But the catch is: it isn’t simply kicking asses. It’s kicking asses with a serum running in their blood and this s 3.5/5 I picked up ISAN because it claimed to be a science fiction, dystopia but was pleasantly surprised to find the romance impressive enough. The story revolves around Ava who has been in ISAN (International Sensory Assassin Network) after she ran away from her foster home. ISAN, as you might be wondering, is a secret agency that trains young adults to fight and well, assassinate. But the catch is: it isn’t simply kicking asses. It’s kicking asses with a serum running in their blood and this serum, called the Helix, is the hero-cum-villain of the story. The serum heightens their senses and this power is used to fight. I won’t delve much into it due to my no-spoilers policy, but rest assured, the revelations are unpredictable at times and things aren’t what they seem to be. Of course, being a dystopian, it had its set of tropes to muster and while this called for some eye rolling at times, I found myself giving in to the big twists for they were timed pretty well. It’s too early to comment on the overall plot since there’s a sequel in making but if I consider this sole piece, it was well planned and executed. The story starts off and ends at somewhat same but still completely opposite notes and I love that little cliffhanger that has killed me. There are enough events to give a sense of a complex science fiction and the action scenes don’t fail to push that adrenaline through you. The characters are something that both pleased and disappointed me. I’m not going to mention any side character’s names because I personally feel that would take away the surprise elements, so bear with me. Ava, the female protagonist, is a tough girl who aces all her training missions and is now ready to fight the real ones, but the humanized side of her was well explored when she questions killing someone or anyone for that matter. You guys know how I am about humanizing so yeah, I like a tough girl who isn’t heartless. However, she does sometimes annoy me with her actions and dialogues which makes me question why I’m still reading and that isn’t cool. She had this underlying urge to prove herself to the people who might’ve (as a fact) stated that she failed and this gave a subtly ominous side to her character, in my opinion. The side characters aren’t developed themselves. I’m going to say this outright because that’s exactly what I felt and though I think I should give this a benefit of doubt since the sequel is still in progress, I shouldn’t because this book had 300 pages. By the way, I’m saying this for the majority. Two were pretty well developed and there’s one who won my heart. That half star is there for him. Yeah, it’s a boy! The writing is impressive especially with the action sequences that excited me. It’s written in the first person point-of-view. The backstories are built coherently and don’t make me question the planning stages of this novel at all. Overall, there were a few bits that fell off for me because how many dystopias can I actually love with the protagonist fighting for an organisation that he/she questions over the course of the story. Anyway, this was overall a pretty good read because of the few impressive climaxes that the story had through the middle. And of course, the cliffhanger that’s making me scream for more. Disclaimer: I received a digital copy of this via my participation in a promotional blog tour but that in no way influences my rating and/or opinions about this. Thank you Xpresso Book Tours and Mary Ting! Blog | Twitter | Tumblr | Instagram

  17. 4 out of 5

    Katherine Paschal

    **3.5 Stars** Review on https://smadasbooksmack.blogspot.com/ Ava was given the choice to leave her juvenile detention center for the opportunity to join an organization that will use her strengths on covert missions- the catch is that she will be given small doses of an experimental drug named Helix that alters all her senses, pretty much making her into a super soldier. The plus side is that she will get out of jail, not have to go to a foster home and be fed- sounds like something she can't pas **3.5 Stars** Review on https://smadasbooksmack.blogspot.com/ Ava was given the choice to leave her juvenile detention center for the opportunity to join an organization that will use her strengths on covert missions- the catch is that she will be given small doses of an experimental drug named Helix that alters all her senses, pretty much making her into a super soldier. The plus side is that she will get out of jail, not have to go to a foster home and be fed- sounds like something she can't pass up. Now after months of training, Ava is in charge of her own team of kickass girls, but this "amazing opportunity" seems more like a different kind of prison, one based on lies. Ava does not know what she stands for anymore but she is willing to dig to find out. What a ride full of twists! I would easily classify this as an action adventure mystery. The pacing of the plot was very fast, jumping from one thing to the next, keeping the reader on their toes. And the mystery was so twisty I had no idea what was going to be dropped on Ava (aka me through Ava) next. The take away message in this book is everyone lies, secrets are common occurrences and trust no one. The best part of the book for me was the action, be it the virtual training encounters or the real life danger the team encounters. ISAN started off with Ava and her team being in the middle of a intense situation which pretty much set the tone for what was to come for the rest of the story, you don't learn that it was a training encounter until Ava "dies"...again. I loved how the author created all the training games, be it the virtual scenarios or the crazy obstacles courses with the jumps and booby traps all while wearing a vest and basically playing laser tag. At times I was a little hesitant about what was going on in the plot but the action was intense and engaging enough that I kept on reading to discover more challenges next. I personally was not a fan of the pretty much insta-love that came into play (3 days is not enough time to love a person in real life- lust and infatuation, totally, but not love), I would have been happier without it, but alas YA it seems must have romance even when a book is better without. But to each their own. This my friends is not a standalone book, instead it is the first in a series where answers to old questions just started to be hinted at and brand new questions popped up. Fact- we have uncertainty about a lot of things, hints at some stuff, and basically you need to patiently wait for the next book to dive deeper into the heart of ISAN and the the lies and conspiracy surrounding the organization. I hope that Ava is up to the challenge... I am voluntarily reviewing an advance, complimentary copy of this book.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Amber

    ISAN is a beautifully inspirational and breathtakingly touching story of learning what it means to truly live. Having the privilege to eat, breathe, and take care of your body is not the same as living and experiencing a full and enriched life. While staying alive is important, we can’t afford to neglect our heart. Our body is only a part of who we are as a whole being. Our mind can guide us, but it is only with our heart that we can feel and truly cherish the people and the world around us. To ISAN is a beautifully inspirational and breathtakingly touching story of learning what it means to truly live. Having the privilege to eat, breathe, and take care of your body is not the same as living and experiencing a full and enriched life. While staying alive is important, we can’t afford to neglect our heart. Our body is only a part of who we are as a whole being. Our mind can guide us, but it is only with our heart that we can feel and truly cherish the people and the world around us. To truly live, we must be whole. Ava can’t really remember who she was before coming to ISAN. In her dreams, she sees glimpses of events and images of people that she doesn’t always recognize. What should make her desperate to search for answers only fuels her determination to forget the past and keep moving forward. After all, the past can’t change her present or redirect her future. Only she can redirect her future, but she has been convinced that she doesn’t have a future. All the more reason to just appreciate what she has now and forget about anything else. One simple message will forever change her life. One word will tear her entire world apart and awaken her long dormant heart. One person will topple the mirage that is her existence and show her what it means to really live life to the fullest. In the end, the choice will be hers to continue living a half-life or do whatever it takes to fight for a life she has always dreamed could be hers. I was immediately captivated by Ava. Her character is simple yet so deliciously complicated once we get a better picture of her life. I can’t say how much I love stories that are chock full of action and mystery while sweetly laced with a beautifully delicate romance. There were hints of a “La Femme Nikita” format which made me squeal with delight since that is my all-time favorite TV series. Once Rhett was introduced I was thoroughly and completely invested into this incredible adventure. Rhett wasn’t what I expected, but he was utterly perfect for Ava. He was able to give her a small but precious taste of what it means to live an authentic life with every part of who you are. He left no stone unturned in showing her how mesmerizing, intoxicating, and scary is can be to leave behind the world she had grown comfortable with, but at the same time she saw what it meant to feel and be completely real and whole. Mary Ting has forever etched her name on my short list of favorite authors, and this story placed another gold start next to her name. I am not sure there are words that can truly explain how an author can push their way into your heart, make you feel and hurt and soar with the eagles, and in the end transform a part of you into something better and wonderful. The impact of one heart to another can be limitless and life changing, and every word from Mary’s heart has always and will always have that profound effect on me. I hope that you will give her a chance to touch you just as deeply and what better time to start then with this phenomenal new series!

  19. 4 out of 5

    Dee/ bookworm

    #Isan #NetGalley publisher synopsis: Meteors devastated the Earth. World Governments developed plans to help surviving citizens. The United States disbanded and salvageable land was divided into four quadrants—North, South, East, and West—governed by The Remnant Council. Struggling to survive, seventeen-year-old Ava ends up in juvenile detention, until she is selected for a new life—with a catch. She must be injected with an experimental serum. The results will be life changing. The serum will mak #Isan #NetGalley publisher synopsis: Meteors devastated the Earth. World Governments developed plans to help surviving citizens. The United States disbanded and salvageable land was divided into four quadrants—North, South, East, and West—governed by The Remnant Council. Struggling to survive, seventeen-year-old Ava ends up in juvenile detention, until she is selected for a new life—with a catch. She must be injected with an experimental serum. The results will be life changing. The serum will make her better. To receive the serum Ava agrees to join a program controlled by ISAN, the International Sensory Assassin Network. While on a mission, she is abducted by a rebel group led by Rhett and told that not only does she have a history with him, but her entire past is a lie perpetuated by ISAN to ensure her compliance. Unsure of who to trust, Ava must decide if her strangely familiar and handsome captor is her enemy or her savior—and time is running out. I really tried to get into this book, but it was hard for me. The premise of the book sounded amazing, but in actuality it seemed very far fetched, the characters seemed very winey and I really didn't connect with any of the characters. It also appears as if they are training, but there is not a lot of action. I received an advance reader copy in exchange for a fair review.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Chris Sword

    I have never gave a book review before, Mary Ting is one of my Wife's favorite authors. And I had seen a description of this book ISAN and thought that it would be very interesting to read. I am more of a Christian Novel reader; However I started reading this book became engrossed in it. It has a lot of action which most guys as myself like in a book. I am a computer geek and I would love to have some of the technology that this book talks about. I am not sure what to really say in a review but I have never gave a book review before, Mary Ting is one of my Wife's favorite authors. And I had seen a description of this book ISAN and thought that it would be very interesting to read. I am more of a Christian Novel reader; However I started reading this book became engrossed in it. It has a lot of action which most guys as myself like in a book. I am a computer geek and I would love to have some of the technology that this book talks about. I am not sure what to really say in a review but my honest opinion it is a very well written book with on the edge of your seat action from the beginning to the end. I loved the book and will be recommending it to my friends and co-workers. I'm glad I read the book, at first I did think it was going to be a lot of romance because that is what my wife really likes however it wasn't one of those lovey dovey stories. It was sweet but not necessarily a girly only book, this book is for everyone and I like that. Mary, if your reading this Evelyn said your anxious to know my thoughts on this book. No worries because I did really enjoy this book, and I will do my best to recommend ISAN and try to send you some male readers. If I could give you more stars on the rating, I would. This is a 10/10 for me, Evelyn said to write a second part to this book, she wants more just as I do as well.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Dani Hart

    An enchanting glimpse into the future when the world is devastated by natural disasters and the human race finds ways to rebuild, replenish, and capitalize on resources from the same meteors that brought them to the brink of extinction. With a secret government keeping everyone in check, including the four council leaders of the four quadrants that make up this new world, lines are crossed and Ava, a 17 year old juvenile foster delinquent turned Assassin is at the forefront of it all. Ava’s life An enchanting glimpse into the future when the world is devastated by natural disasters and the human race finds ways to rebuild, replenish, and capitalize on resources from the same meteors that brought them to the brink of extinction. With a secret government keeping everyone in check, including the four council leaders of the four quadrants that make up this new world, lines are crossed and Ava, a 17 year old juvenile foster delinquent turned Assassin is at the forefront of it all. Ava’s life is filled with mental missions, training, and field missions. She knew her job and whether she was satisfied or not she signed a contract with ISAN to get out of juvie and this was her life now. She is an Assassin and nothing more. Until she’s taken on a terrifying and unexpected adventure that opens her eyes to possibilities she had never considered. With lives in her hands she has to figure out who is lying and who is telling the truth before everything blows up in her face. ISAN is a thrilling adventure filled with conspiracies, deceit, lust, danger, and love. I can’t wait for book 2!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Sam

    **I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own** Ok...AMAZING!! I just love dystopian literature, each story has similar elements, but each author uses them in their own way to create such amazing novels and Mary Ting did an amazing job. I absolutely stunned at how great this book was!! Ava, the main character, is strong and fierce, but she has normal human flaws that make her relatable. Of course, her life experiences aren't very relatable. I **I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own** Ok...AMAZING!! I just love dystopian literature, each story has similar elements, but each author uses them in their own way to create such amazing novels and Mary Ting did an amazing job. I absolutely stunned at how great this book was!! Ava, the main character, is strong and fierce, but she has normal human flaws that make her relatable. Of course, her life experiences aren't very relatable. I mean, she's a freaking assassin!! I liked how the book had started out about a bunch of girl being trained to be assassins, there weren't many guys in the picture, which was nice because there aren't a lot of dystopian books out there that don't have some sort of romance present. Towards the middle, however, the boys enter the picture and a hidden romance appears (I won't say anything else...spoilers!!) It was overall a wonderful read. I wish there hadn't been any romance in it, just because a lot of books have that in it these days, but it added a nice flare to the story.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Megan Lowe

    This book was an interesting prospect for me. It’s been a while since I’ve read a distopian book and one could argue that after major successes, the genre is a bit done. I think it probably is. I liked Ava and I liked the situations that were presented and how the world operated. My problem was with the lack of detail at the beginning of the book about the world. I think this was majorly needed and the lack of detail didn’t quite hold the story together that would’ve improved it. I also think the This book was an interesting prospect for me. It’s been a while since I’ve read a distopian book and one could argue that after major successes, the genre is a bit done. I think it probably is. I liked Ava and I liked the situations that were presented and how the world operated. My problem was with the lack of detail at the beginning of the book about the world. I think this was majorly needed and the lack of detail didn’t quite hold the story together that would’ve improved it. I also think the obsession with boys was a bit overdone as well. It just seemed a little uncouth to me. That said, it was a solid book.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Nicole

    I received this novel from net galley and the publisher for an honest review. Thank you!! This book was amazing!! I could not put it down!! There were several plot twists and the author kept me in such suspense. The story is written in first person point of view. Ava is part of ISAN, which stands for International Sensory Assassin Network. She was in foster care, then went to juvie, and then recruited by ISAN, like a get out of jail card. She and others have been training to handle missions desig I received this novel from net galley and the publisher for an honest review. Thank you!! This book was amazing!! I could not put it down!! There were several plot twists and the author kept me in such suspense. The story is written in first person point of view. Ava is part of ISAN, which stands for International Sensory Assassin Network. She was in foster care, then went to juvie, and then recruited by ISAN, like a get out of jail card. She and others have been training to handle missions designated by ISAN, thinking they are hunting and killing criminals. Ava and others are injected with Helix, an experimental serum that heightens there senses and abilities. Ava is kidnapped by a rogue group where she meets Rhett, who claims they have a history. But Ava has never met him before. How can he know so much about her? Rhett does everything he can to get Ava to remember, but she cannot and believes she made herself forget. Rhett tells her memories can be forgotten, but the emotions are always there. Ava begins to care for Rhett and the others as she learns more about what they do. Ava is torn between two worlds and does not know what side she is on. Ava needs to decide who to trust before it is too late. I cannot wait to read the next novel in the series!!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Diane Lynch

    I love Mary Ting’s ISAN (International Sensory Assassin Network). Seventeen-year-old, Ava has a special DNA marker that allows a unique drug known as Helix to enhance her abilities. She is given a choice of remaining in juvenile detention or joining ISAN (International Sensory Assassin Network). After being captured by a rebel group she is told that her life is a lie. She has no idea who she can trust. This dystopian novel is suitable for young adults. ISAN reminded me of a combination of the tel I love Mary Ting’s ISAN (International Sensory Assassin Network). Seventeen-year-old, Ava has a special DNA marker that allows a unique drug known as Helix to enhance her abilities. She is given a choice of remaining in juvenile detention or joining ISAN (International Sensory Assassin Network). After being captured by a rebel group she is told that her life is a lie. She has no idea who she can trust. This dystopian novel is suitable for young adults. ISAN reminded me of a combination of the television series Alias (2001-06) and the Matrix movie series. It is creative, full of action, and mysterious. I like Ava. She has some interesting powers like being able to store architectural blueprints in her mind to help her on her missions. She is a good leader. She has had a difficult life. I like that she is strong-willed. The plot was amazing. A lot of interesting twists occur throughout the novel. ISAN was skillfully written and thought-provoking. The story had a captivating ending. I cannot wait for the next book in the series. I highly recommend this book to science fiction lovers. ISAN would make a great movie or television series. I voluntarily reviewed an advance reader copy of this book.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Jeannette dods

    Let me try and put into words how awesome this book is without revealing spoilers. The main character, Ava, is your average 17 year old girl. Ok, maybe not average, she is a trained assassin living in a dystonian world. Ava has her trials she must face and constant questions at every turn. The characters in this book are well developed and make you feel as though they are also your friends/enemies. I found myself fighting along with them and attempting to decipher the mysteries that ISAN entails Let me try and put into words how awesome this book is without revealing spoilers. The main character, Ava, is your average 17 year old girl. Ok, maybe not average, she is a trained assassin living in a dystonian world. Ava has her trials she must face and constant questions at every turn. The characters in this book are well developed and make you feel as though they are also your friends/enemies. I found myself fighting along with them and attempting to decipher the mysteries that ISAN entails. The flow of the book is an easy read, smooth and realistic. I absolutely loved this book! Its filled with action, mystery, drama, and romance. I cant wait for the next book in the series. I need it now.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Tracy Millosovich

    I love the scientific aspect of this story. And the action is amazing! The author outdid herself. I am glad I got to read pieces of this. I am hoping to get a signed copy of this, and see the movie. Yes! There is an ISAN movie coming in May 2018!!!

  28. 4 out of 5

    Julia A

    This book was a refreshing addition to my virtual bookshelf full of dystopian books. It was a fast-paced and addictive read, with descriptions of a world so foreign from our own that it thrilled me to imagine and visualize it. All of the characters are special in their own way and work seamlessly together to create an unique and exciting reading experience. I can't wait to read the next book in this series! I received this book through NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Amanda Gillespie Shock N Awe Book Blog

    I have been a fan of Mary Ting for awhile and have high expectations for her books. Once again she has met those expectations. ISAN reminded me why I love this genre. The character development was spot on giving the reader the opportunity to draw their own opinions of who to love and who to hate. The ending was predictable in the way that you knew there would be a cliffhanger and now I have to wait patiently for book two. Patience isn't my strong point.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Stacy

    I gave it 3.5 I didn't know if I would like ISAN going in, but by the end I wanted more. It started out a bit slow, but I enjoyed ISAN. I felt myself caring for not only Ava—although she could be very naive at times—, but many of the supporting characters. Once things got going the story had a nice flow to it. Hold onto your pants because there is a lot of action in ISAN and you never really know which characters to trust. It seems like a few characters have hidden agendas and I'm not quite sure if I gave it 3.5 I didn't know if I would like ISAN going in, but by the end I wanted more. It started out a bit slow, but I enjoyed ISAN. I felt myself caring for not only Ava—although she could be very naive at times—, but many of the supporting characters. Once things got going the story had a nice flow to it. Hold onto your pants because there is a lot of action in ISAN and you never really know which characters to trust. It seems like a few characters have hidden agendas and I'm not quite sure if they are on the good or bad side of things yet. I look forward to finding out. There is a bit of romance going on in ISAN, but I don't really have a lot to say about it yet. One thing that ISAN was missing was details about the world. The world building was minimal and I think some more detail would have pulled everything together. I'm excited to read more of the ISAN series and will keep checking the authors website for news on when it will be coming out. * This book was provided free of charge from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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