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  • Posted November 21, 2013

    Kira has survived many things like her family getting murdered a

    Kira has survived many things like her family getting murdered and living on the streets. She does good at getting by until she wakes up chained next to Rogan. Now she finds she has to play a game for the entertainment of some. If she wins she gets the life she has always wanted if she fails she dies. She doesn't trust Rogan but has to depend on him to get through some of the obstacles. With the help of her psi ability she discovers more than she thought possible in this game for her life.

    Kira has an ability she really doesn't use a lot. She doesn't trust easy and at times feels a little guilty she survived and her family didn't. I will say I was surprised by her actions at times as I thought she would do something different. I really liked her and how she is strong and does not give up.Rogan is from the spoiled lucky ones in this new world and should have it made. He doesn't and has been thrown into the game as punishment. He has a fews secrets that he doesn't want to come out. He keeps trying to help Kira even if she doesn't trust him. I liked him a lot. He seems like the bad boy at first bur the more you get to know him the more you see beneath at what he really is.

    I have read a few dystopian books like this one but it does stand out and is very entertaining. I didn't want to put it down as I had to see what happened next. It seemed like half the time they wouldn't make it off the show alive. I loved all the twist and turns you didn't see coming. The author does a great job keeping you on your toes. Kira really has no one she thinks she can trust and while she thinks her ability is nothing big. it comes in handy in this book. I like giving her a smaller power and seeing what she can do with it. I will say don't think you have it all figured out or who you think is good or bad because you may be wrong. If you love dystopian books try this one and the cover matches the book really well.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 29, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Kira Jordan is a homeless orphan who has survived in the world u

    Kira Jordan is a homeless orphan who has survived in the world using her cunning wits and her low level psi, giving her the power to sense people's feelings, but only with skin-to-skin contact. Rogan is a notorious criminal who had gotten out of Juvenile Detention a couple of days before they met. Now, they have both been thrown into a game where you need to survive, time is your enemy, and a clock is always ticking. Having to stay within 90 feet of each other (or both Kira and Rogan's head will explode), Kira and Rogan must find a way to beat each level of a horrible underground game, all with crowds of rich people watching their every move on a private T.V channel. But Rogan knows more about these games then he will let on, and his secrets may lead to a horrible truth...........This. Book. Is. AMAZEBEANS!!!! I honestly would be hard pressed to find a book like this one (if you're thinking Hunger Games right now, I totally understand, as there are some similarities, I know). I fell in love with Kira and Rogan. Kira is a very sarcastic and witty girl, and sarcasm is my best subject. I love being sarcastic!The ending was sooooo gooooood!!!! It was so sweetly tied up, and I liked the ending theme (I can't tell you what it was, but it has to do with a certain boy and a certain girl). Countdown is written in first person, in Kira's POV, which makes this book like 10000 times better to me. A great read for teen ages 13+.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 16, 2014

    Sounds good

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2014

    I Also Recommend:

    I had my doubts about this book but I actually found it pretty i

    I had my doubts about this book but I actually found it pretty interesting, was it the best book I have ever read, no. WOuld I recommend it though, yes. It was a very interesting view on the online world that I found fascinating! I would most likely read this book again, just not anytime soon. I like more series books. I felt like it was too short but it had to be that way and I understand. I hope you enjoy the book! :-)

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  • Posted January 13, 2014

    (Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a re

    (Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Harlequin Teen and Netgalley.)
    16-year-old Kira lives on the streets following her family’s murder two years ago. When she wakes in a dark room, shackled, and having no idea how she got there, she panics – firstly because she’s afraid of the dark, and secondly because she can hear someone else in the room with her.

    17-year-old Rogan has been in prison on several counts of murder, but now also finds himself in the room with Kira. Things are about to get much worse when the lights come on, a countdown starts, and they have 1 minute to get out of the room before they die.

    Even after escaping the room, they are not safe though, as they learn that they have 5 more levels to complete to be declared winners.
    Can Kira and Rogan win ‘The Countdown’? Who is behind this awful game and why? And will they make it out alive?

    This was an interesting sci-fi/dystopian, with plenty of action.

    Kira and Rogan were both okay characters, and although I didn’t like how Rogan tried to live up to his image at the beginning of the book.

    The storyline was pretty good, and I liked the action and pace, especially in the first half. I did think that one of the levels was a bit poo, but never mind. The tasks did escalate, but I think they could have been worse. It sort of reminded me of the film ‘The Cube’, crossed with ‘Big Brother’! I did think that if it hadn’t been life or death, people would have played the game for fun, so you can see what I mean about it not being that bad!

    There was some romance with was nice, but it wasn’t the main focus of the story. It did seem fairly likely that this would happen though being as they were paired up for the game.

    There were some plotlines that I didn’t see coming, but there were others that were really obvious, that I could see coming right from the start.
    The ending was okay, bar a few deaths, and I was glad that we got a ‘happily ever after’.
    Overall; a sci-fi /dystopian with plenty of action.
    7 out of 10.

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  • Posted January 3, 2014

    I was really looking forward to reading this one as I am always

    I was really looking forward to reading this one as I am always looking for young adult dystopian reads. Countdown is a fast-paced book filled with lots of action- but I felt the world building and characterization was really lacking. However, as a surface level book, I can honestly say I enjoyed reading this one.

    I thought the premise of this book sounded pretty cool- we are immediately thrown into an underground reality game where two teens are forced to play and do what they must in order to survive to the next level. The book focused on the game, rather than the dystopian world surrounding it. All we really learn is that there was a plague and that there is a Colony where the elite, rich live. We don't get a whole lot of insight into the rest of the population. Kira, our female MC, lives a life of theft after her family's murder. Apparently, she has a special skill that allows her to empathize with others and by touching them can feel their emotions. This would have been a pretty cool extension of the storyline had it been developed more. We are just kind of told she has it and she can do it, and apparently there are others who have gained it after the plague also. But, that was kind of it. We see her read a few individuals in the novel and she gains some insight into their emotions, but I don't know. It just felt like a weak sub-storyline to be honest.

    I suppose I liked Kira well enough. She is thrown into this game without any warning and is forced to work alongside another teen, Rogan, who she learns is a murderer. She is wary of him, but knows she has to work with him in order to survive. Rogan has a lot of secrets and she is right to be distrustful of him. Things don't add up where he is concerned, but after he hesitates on a mission, all of a sudden she starts to wonder if she's been told the truth about him. Kira does a complete 180 where Rogan is concerned and soon she's falling for him. Yeah, we have insta-love folks. Insta-love doesn't bother me, but it was like, one second she doesn't trust him for anything and the next they're making out and ready to jump into bed together. Whaaaat? I just didn't feel any kind of attachment to these characters and I didn't find their development to be very believable. The story occurs in a very short amount of time, so there really wasn't time for either of those things, but I still felt we only skimmed the surface of what could have been.

    I did like that I didn't know what to expect. Each level of Countdown was a mystery, though I did figure the last level out, as it only seemed fitting. The fact pace and the action is what really kept me reading and I was completely immersed and engaged in the book. I would give this one a shot if you are an action fan, but if you are looking for a young adult dystopian, I don't feel you are going to get that here.

    *Received a copy of this book via NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review.*

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 8, 2013

    Awesome Book

    I absolutely loved this book! The action, plot and pinch of romance was amazing! I would read this book again and again! Rogan and his back story was very interesting and complex. I loved it! He was the perfect character for Countdown as well as Kira for partners. This book was just amazing and awesome. If there was another book, I would read it! Overall, I recommend this book to everyone --> more specifically action, futuristic, plot twists lovers!!

    My favorite part of the book was probably ... I honestly don't know. The bok was just so great.

    The part that frightened me the most was probably when Gareth grabbed Kira's foot towards the end of the book when they were in the dark and no one knew who it was. Kira thought it was Rogan, but it wasn't him, so it was the supposed dead Gareth. Which was creepy and scary.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 29, 2013


    Couldn't put it down!!!!!

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  • Posted November 16, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Countdown is a fast paced, action oriented read that kept me fli

    Countdown is a fast paced, action oriented read that kept me flipping the pages. This is mostly plot and action driven, and was just what I needed after an emotional whopper of a last book. 
    Kira is paired with murderer Rogan, who is handsome, mysterious and she has to begin wondering what if there is more to the story, what if he didn't do it, what if he did. Kira's family was murdered in this violent, cruel and chilling dystopian society and she is forced to the street before she ends up fighting alongside Rogan against the countdown, for her life. 
    I didn't think I would enjoy the romance as much as I did, but it was a nice addition to the action and the story. 
    While this isn't anything earth shakingly unique in the dystopia genre, it was well written, and the characters had enough depth to them that they didn't seem like accessories to the plot. It all flowed well, and I am glad that I took a chance and requested on netgalley and got around to it because the twists were nice, and I did like the computer aspects that were added into this one. 
    I thought that the ending was really going to let me down, but it managed to give me what I needed as a wrap up and still fit the story. 

    Bottom Line: Quick and action packed with romance I enjoyed

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  • Posted October 14, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Read from October 09 to 10, 2013 Book Info  Paperback, 336

    Read from October 09 to 10, 2013

    Book Info 
    Paperback, 336 pages
    Published October 1st 2013 by Harlequin Teen
    ISBN 0373210906 (ISBN13: 9780373210909)
    edition language English
    other editions (5)
    Source:Netgalley EARC

    Book Buy Links 




    3 seconds left to live. Once the countdown starts, it cannot be stopped. 

    2 pawns thrown into a brutal underground reality game. 

    Kira Jordan survived her family's murder and months on plague-devastated city streets with hard-won savvy and a low-level psi ability. She figures she can handle anything. Until she wakes up in a barren room, chained next to the notorious Rogan Ellis. 

    1 reason Kira will never, ever trust Rogan. Even though both their lives depend on it. 

    Their every move is controlled and televised for a vicious exclusive audience. And as Kira's psi skill unexpectedly grows and Rogan's secrets prove evermore deadly, Kira's only chance of survival is to risk trusting him as much as her instincts. Even if that means running head-on into the one trap she can't escape. 


    My Thoughts

    Read from October 09 to 10, 2013

    Video games made into big screen movies are great, have watched them for years and think Countdown by Michelle Rowen has the "feel" of a movie but like the fact that we use our imagination to bring alive the characters and the action in our minds because it would be hard to translate a lot of the story from print to film.

    So turns out this book was issued first in 2008, revamped by author for a teen audience and then released in early October of 2013. 

    Good decision as it was a great fast paced, action filled, easy to follow read that managed to capture both the spirit of other books in the genre while standing apart with enough different aspects to make it unique in it's own right.

    As one who has enjoyed for years reading about "survival after the Plague/Virus/War" post apocalyptic genre this book was a great addition to it and hopefully will garner enough of a following to make it worth while releasing a second time.

    I felt that this has more to offer than just the one book, be interesting to see if the author decides to continue Kira and Rogan's story in future.

    [EArc from Netgalley in exchange for honest review]

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  • Posted October 8, 2013

    One word. Awesome. Call me crazy, but I absolutely loved this

    One word. Awesome. Call me crazy, but I absolutely loved this book. Yes, there have been reality tv-type stories done before, but this one was so unique. It was like reality television meets The Hunger Games. The story had quite a few things about it that made it really different than others of its kind.

    First of all, there are very few characters in the story. The majority of the book takes place between just Kira and Rogan. You'd think this might be boring, but uh, hells no. There was very little down time for you to get bored in because the story just punches right along with this super fast pace that keeps you on the edge of your seat. The game of Countdown has different levels, and when the countdown on each level begins, Kira and Rogan have only moments to complete a task before they both die. Between each level is a very small rest period before the new level begins. The fact that the author was able to use those miniscule moments to not only reveal things about the story and the purpose behind the game, but also she managed to provide some amazing characterization and a progressive romance between the two characters. To do such thorough characterization in so few moments was amazing. And despite the fact that, again, there were only moments here and there, the romance never felt rushed in any way. It was slow-building at a perfect pace.

    These two characters are so brave and strong, and they fight so hard through each level that you just find that you're holding your breath as you root for them, both to win the game and beat the bad guys, and to be together.

    This was definitely a fast-paced and action-packed story that kept me on the edge of my seat. Lastly, I loved that this was a standalone novel. In a world of series stories, finding a great standalone is refreshing. The writing in this book was amazing, and I immediately wanted to read the book again. Get this book!

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  • Posted August 23, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    A MUST READ for Dystopian YA Fans!

    Raise your hand if you are a fan of well-written YA dystopian fantasy! I am, and although the basic premise isn’t new, trust me, Countdown by Michelle Rowen is one adventure that will have you hanging from your fingernails as a twisted society pits two teen “throwaways” against the evil machinations of artificial intelligence and a society that craves the thrill of an extreme reality show, from the safety of their viewing implants. Sick? YES Twisted? YES Unimaginable? Sadly, not so much, just take a look at what contemporary TV has to offer today.

    A plague has shattered society, life is chaotic and the powers that rise are lax, survivors are often left to fend for themselves, no matter how old they are. Kira was a young teen when her family was brutally murdered before her eyes. Now she runs the streets, alone. Rogan is a street-smart convicted mass murderer with enough hidden baggage to sink the Titanic. Together, they make one strong team, guaranteed to make the sponsors some big money! Will they learn to trust in each other, as well as their own instincts to survive? Will outside forces come between them in a brutal mind game? To what lengths will they go to survive?

    Michelle Rowen has created two very likable and strong characters who try to overcome insurmountable odds to survive in a game they didn’t ask to play. Loaded with great dialogue, a deviously twisted plot, and intense friction, action and tension, Countdown and Michelle Rowen prove that a complete escape into another world and reality is just the turn of the page away!

    This ARC edition was provided by NetGalley and Harlequin Teen in exchange for my honest review.

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