Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for The Innocence Treatment by Ari Goelman, hosted by Rock Star Book Tours! I’m taking the day off from Shattering Stigmas to chat about this book, do a review, and then give you a chance to win your own copy, yay! 

The Innocence Treatment by Ari B. Goelman
Published by Roaring Brook Press on October 17th 2017
Pages: 304

You may believe the government protects you, but only one girl knows how they use you.

Lauren has a disorder that makes her believe everything her friends tell her--and she believes everyone is her friend. Her innocence puts her at constant risk, so when she gets the opportunity to have an operation to correct her condition, she seizes it. But after the surgery, Lauren is changed. Is she a paranoid lunatic with violent tendencies? Or a clear-eyed observer of the world who does what needs to be done?

Told in journal entries and therapy session transcripts, The Innocence Treatment is a collection of Lauren's papers, annotated by her sister long after the events of the novel. A compelling YA debut thriller that is part speculative fiction and part shocking tell-all of genetic engineering and government secrets, Lauren's story is ultimately an electrifying, propulsive, and spine-tingling read.

I found myself quite fond of this book, which is why when I saw the announcement for the blog tour, I jumped on it! I have not been doing many blog tours lately, unless I know I really liked the book or author, so here we are. This came as part of my Macmillan Fall 2017 package, and was one of the reasons I picked said package, actually- it just seemed like my kind of book. And yay, it was! Let’s talk about why, shall why?

  • It is future/dystopian, but a really fresh take. I liked the medical aspect a lot, and I liked that it focused on distorting the brain. Because frankly, that is so fascinating in a creepy “oh crap I hope this kind of thing doesn’t actually happen” way. But it feels plausible. Okay, maybe not this exact situation obviously, but some form of awful medical control. Look, I have read a ton of dystopian and future-set books, and this felt very original to me, so I think that says quite a bit!
  • The formatting is unique!love me some unique formatting. This is done through Lauren’s journal entries, her sister’s footnotes (which were probably my fave!), and clinical session transcripts. The journal entries worked really well because the reader got to know Lauren quite well through them, so she didn’t seem so abstract. And the other bits filled in some things that Lauren wasn’t privy to.
  • Speaking of Lauren, it was impossible to not feel for her. I mean, brain surgeries? Not knowing who to trust? Not knowing what is happening to your own body? That is a lot for one person to handle, especially a young person. And most especially a young person who has spent her whole life completely oblivious to the truth of the world around her.
  • The possibility of an unreliable narrator. Was Lauren reliable? I am not telling you, and I myself was unsure for so long. Which made the book that much more high stakes. Because as much as Lauren doesn’t know who to trust throughout the book, neither do we as the reader.
  • It was fast paced and engaging. I flew through the book, not only because I was invested in the outcome, but just because there were constantly new twists and discoveries. Plus, the formatting made for a really enjoyable read as well.

I think the only thing that I wasn’t a huge fan of was that I did have some trouble believing the whole “not understanding sarcasm/lies” part- because I don’t really know if that is how the brain works? But alas, it was easy enough to get over once I got into the book!

Bottom Line: A great fresh take on future/dystopian novels, from the plot to the formatting. It was engaging and entertaining, and a definite win for me!

About Ari B. Goelman

I’m Ari Goelman.  I write fantasy novels.  Stories, too.

My latest novel, due out in October, 2017, is The Innocent Treatment.  Lauren Fielding is a sixteen-year-old high school student with a cognitive disability – she believes everything her friends tell her, and she believes that everyone is her friend.  A cutting edge medical treatment helps Lauren, but after the treatment her mental condition soon veers into paranoia.   Or does it? The Innocent Treatment comes out in October, 2017, but in the meantime you can read (a little) more about Lauren here.  (You can also pre-order a copy here.)

My first novel, The Path of Names came out a few years ago.  It’s a middle grade fantasy / murder mystery / ghost story.  You can read lots more about it here.  Or you could just read the book.  Honestly, that’s probably a better idea.

Here’s my blog and here’s a list of the short stories I’ve published,  many of which you can read online for free.

3 winners will receive a finished copy of THE INNOCENCE TREATMENT, US Only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule:

Week One: 

10/9/2017- A Dream Within A Dream- Excerpt 

10/10/2017- It Starts at Midnight- Review 

10/11/2017- BookHounds YA- Guest Post 

10/12/2017- Savings in Seconds- Review 

10/13/2017- Books at Dawn- Excerpt 

Week Two: 

10/16/2017- Howling Libraries- Review 

10/17/2017- YA and Wine- Interview 

10/18/2017- Here’s to Happy Endings- Review 

10/19/2017- Kendra Loves Books- Review 

10/20/2017- Lisa Loves Literature- Interview 

Do you think you’d want to be blissfully unaware of people’s real thoughts and feelings? Or would you rather know the truth? (I am definitely Team Truth.)

Posted October 10, 2017 by Shannon @ It Starts at Midnight in Blog Tour, Giveaway, Review / 7 Comments


7 responses to “Review & Giveaway: The Innocence Treatment by Ari Goelman

  1. I’m really excited to read The Innocence Project. I like the idea that it’s told through journal entries and transcripts. I’m anxious to see how the author handled that.

  2. This one sounds very interesting. I love that it is told in a unique format those always grab me. Also, I love that we aren’t sure the narrator is reliable I find that keeps me wanting to know more. Great review! Thank you for sharing the giveaway!!

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