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Hollowspine

I'm Reading Comeeks

I dedicate this blog to comics in all forms, manga, autobio, superhero, art books, etc.  And of course, since I need a challenge, I've decided that I'll read and write (short) reviews for 365 comics during 2015.

Once We Were

Once We Were - Kat Zhang

The second book in the hybrid chronicles finds Addie and Eva hiding out in the aftermath of their escape from Nornand. Feeling cooped up and left in the dark Eva jumps at the chance to sneak out and discuss plans with fellow hybrids, but soon she's getting her and Addie deeper into the resistance and finding out things she may not be ready to hear. They are also experimenting with 'going under' leaving only one of their personalities awake at a time.

Rather than reacting to things happening to them, in this story Eva and Addie (esp. Eva) take action, planning a demonstration and eventually even more to give a voice to the hybrid population of the US. More is revealed about the world of the series as well. It seems that other countries do not ban hybridity, that in some places it's normal to be "two-souled." I hadn't quite realized in the other book, but in this world technology is also very limited and Addie/Eva had no idea that people had actually been to the moon.

Having read about many demonstrations and fights between citizens and their government in Cory Doctorow's books I found I couldn't really get into that aspect of the story, since it was nowhere near the quality and thought that Doctorow put into his, but the other aspects of the story, Addie and Eva facing some of the problems of having two people in one body, brought the novel together.

I hadn't thought of it while reading the first book, but here the strangeness of the (almost alien) idea was really brought to the forefront. What would it be like to share one's body with another? I couldn't really see how it would work, even in a large and accepting society. Everything would have to be very open, because who knows which soul would love which other soul, who would care for children that were born of one body, but four separate souls being involved in it's conception? So one two souled guy marries one two-souled girl, what about the other two? It would be convenient if they paired up, but of course, nothing is that simple, so then other people get involved suddenly it's the married couple, the other two souls of the guy the married girl's other personality is dating and the other other guy that the guys other soul is in love with...so confusing! In this society there wouldn't be love triangles, but love myriagons! 

So far the big questions, while at least brought up in this book, are far from being answered. Why do people have two separate personalities in one body? Why do some 'recessive' souls fade away while others do not? Why are some people only born with one to start out with?

While I didn't love this book, I probably will look for the next one in hopes it answers some of those questions.