The Rules: 06/30/13
The Rules by Stacey Kade is the first book in the Project Paper Doll series. Ariane Tucker has been living with five simple rules since she escaped from a top secret genetics lab. She has been living as the daughter of a security guard, but in reality she is a human-alien hybrid.
Kade uses the same parallel story telling structure as her Ghost and the Goth series. Here the points of view are Ariane (the alien) and Zane (the boy bullied into being her fake boyfriend).
Ariane's knowledge of the world is spotty at best. For all her attempts to understand popular culture, she's still very naive. She gets some things but doesn't always get the context. She is therefore an understandably unreliable narrator.
Zane, meanwhile, is part of the popular crowd. The girl who commands them, wants to make Ariane's life a living hell. So she decides the best way to do that is to get her publicly dumped at the upcoming high school shindig. Except — Zane's got a conscience.
Ariane and Zane's relationship isn't exactly friendship and it isn't exactly romantic. But it's interesting and believable in the context of high school bullying. Kade allows their relationship to evolve naturally and gives it room to continue to develop in future books.
The Rules like the previous series does end on a cliff hanger. It's nothing too surprising for anyone familiar with the genre but it's still a satisfying ending. I definitely plan to continue reading.