Review: Tandem by Anna Jarzab

Posted 13 November, 2013 by Pushy in Blog, Featured, Pushy, Pushy Book Review / 6 Comments

I received this book for free from the Borrowed From Library in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review:  Tandem by Anna JarzabTandem by Anna Jarzab
Published by Delacourt, Random House on October 8th 2013
Genres: Parallel Realities, Sci-Fi, Young Adult
Pages: 428
Format: Audiobook
Source: Borrowed From Library
Buy on Amazon
4 Stars

Everything repeats.
You. Your best friend. Every person you know.
Many worlds. Many lives--infinite possibilities.
Welcome to the multiverse.

Sixteen-year-old Sasha Lawson has only ever known one small, ordinary life. When she was young, she loved her grandfather's stories of parallel worlds inhabited by girls who looked like her but led totally different lives. Sasha never believed such worlds were real--until now, when she finds herself thrust into one against her will.

To prevent imminent war, Sasha must slip into the life of an alternate version of herself, a princess who has vanished on the eve of her arranged marriage. If Sasha succeeds in fooling everyone, she will be returned home; if she fails, she'll be trapped in another girl's life forever. As time runs out, Sasha finds herself torn between two worlds, two lives, and two young men vying for her love--one who knows her secret, and one who thinks she's someone she's not.

The first book in the Many-Worlds Trilogy, Tandem is a riveting saga of love and betrayal set in parallel universes in which nothing--and no one--is what it seems.

Many Worlds

I fell in love with Anna Jarzab’s writing a few years ago, when I listened to (in one of my very early audiobook forays) her absolutely stellar, stand alone novel, All Unquiet Things.  So when I heard at BEA that Ms. Jarzab was putting out a sci-fi, YA novel this year, I was first in line to get a copy.  FIRST.  IN.  LINE.  And honestly, I did my best not to be the weirdest stalker fan of BEA, but I’m not entirely sure how well I pulled that off.

So, it was with high expectations that I started this book and I’m happy to say I enjoyed it immensely!

Sci-fi For The Win!

One of the trickiest parts of getting YA Sci-fi right, IMHO, is getting the science to be believable.  I’m not a physicist by ANY stretch of the imagination (Heather and Danny can attest to that!), but I have read my fair share of Asimov and Sagan and I like to think that I’m into the details that make a sci-fi book believable.  However, it can be hard to write good, believable sci-fi and still keep it accessible and interesting to the general public that’s just looking for a good story.  Anna Jarzab hits that sweet spot with Tandem.

I loved the subtle but important differences between the world of Aurora and that of Earth and I loved how, even though the scientists on Aurora don’t fully understand how the Tandem (the veil through which parallel universes are linked) works, it still follows a clear set of scientific rules.

Plus Romance…*sigh*

Now you all know I need me a little romance in my books, and I’m happy to say that Tandem isn’t all bookish delights.  There’s a definite romance between Sasha and Thomas which will make your heart flutter.  Plus there’s room for other romances with the secondary characters which I’m definitely looking forward to seeing explored, although (thankfully) it doesn’t look like we’ll get the dreaded second-book-love-triangle.  I really would just love more Sasha-Thomas goodness, thank you very much!

Everything Repeats…Thank Goodness!

Speaking of the secondary characters, there are a LOT of characters that I feel we didn’t get as much time as I would have liked with and I’m so very happy this book is the first in a trilogy.  Of course I want more time with Sasha, who’s sweet and fierce and lovely, and Thomas, who’s strong and loyal and yummy, but I want more time with Juliana and even Lucas.  Plus I want to know more about Libertas and why the General hats Farnam and what’s up with Juliana’s father and, and, and…..pretty much everything!

Bottom Line

A strong, fascinating start to a promising new series!  Take the leap and check out Tandem!

Rating 4


I borrowed this audiobook from the library, so I didn’t know the audio producer until the end, but I was pleased to hear it was AudioGO!  I love Audible, but I’m happy to see that AudioGO is putting out well produced titles as well.  I had a less than great audio book experience with them in the past, but this production was fabulous!  I highly recommend the audio version of this book!

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Lover of words and authors; absolute fan girl of books! Give me a good story, with characters I can love (and hate) and I'll follow you anywhere. Sing me a song of worlds I can dream of, and I'll listen forever.

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