The Murder Complex by Lindsay Cummings

June 9th, 2014 Kimberly Review 98 Comments

9th Jun
The Murder Complex by Lindsay Cummings
Murder Complex
by Lindsay Cummings
Series: The Murder Complex #1
Published by: HarperCollins
Genres: Dystopian, Science Fiction
Source: Publisher
Purchase: Amazon
Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

An action-packed, blood-soaked, futuristic debut thriller set in a world where the murder rate is higher than the birthrate. For fans of Moira Young’s Dust Lands series, La Femme Nikita, and the movie Hanna. Meadow Woodson, a fifteen-year-old girl who has been trained by her father to fight, to kill, and to survive in any situation, lives with her family on a houseboat in Florida. The state is controlled by The Murder Complex, an organization that tracks the population with precision. The plot starts to thicken when Meadow meets Zephyr James, who is—although he doesn’t know it—one of the MC’s programmed assassins. Is their meeting a coincidence? Destiny? Or part of a terrifying strategy? And will Zephyr keep Meadow from discovering the haunting truth about her family? Action-packed, blood-soaked, and chilling, this is a dark and compelling debut novel by Lindsay Cummings

The Murder Complex by Lindsay Cummings is the first in the dystopian Murder Complex trilogy. Cummings blended science fiction and mystery into this futuristic Floridian thriller. This in Lindsay Cummings debut novel and I quickly devoured it.

The world building unfolds slowly as we take in dual perspectives provided by Meadow Woodson and Zephyr James, a ward. They live in a tightly controlled world where everything is a fight for survival from food rations to jobs. The most intriguing aspect of this world is that the murder rate is higher than the birth rate. It is a dark, oppressive world with rules enacted by the initiative that they must obey. Speaking during the silent hours or harboring pre-fall memorabilia will get you killed on the spot.

Trained by her father to kill, fight and survive any situation, Meadow is fearless yet retains a compassionate side. She lives with her brother, little sister and father on a houseboat off the shores of Florida. Wise beyond her years, she fights for her family and her unwavering love for her little sister Peri.

Zephyr James is a ward. He lost his parents and lives in what used to be the everglades. Zephyr has no idea he is one of the Murder Complex’s trained assassins. A chance encounter with Meadow changes everything for both of them. He is complex, and dreams of a girl he thinks could save him. He despairs over the blood on his hands and seeks forgiveness. He struggles between who he wants to be and who he thinks he is. He often himself unworthy. Despite that, there is a childlike purity to him.

The Murder Complex was a compelling read, as we moved back and forth between the perspectives of Zephyr and Meadow. The tale moves rather quickly since we are not weighed down with a lot of world building in the beginning. The tale is dark and gritty at times. It is a violent, desperate world where only the strongest survive. With each detail, I became more immersed in the world. Murder Complex shared a simplistic yet complex world, and I found its components, rules and solutions to be both horrifying and fascinating. Meadow and Zephyr roles in this trilogy and their relationship intrigued me. There is a little romance, but it is secondary to the dark thriller. The sci-fi elements woven into the tale felt Fringe like and Cummings gave it believability. Of course, we ended on a cliffy after a huge climax that revealed and answered so many questions. Gads, now we wait for the next installment. There is a prequel, The Fear Trials, which was published May 27, 2014. It shares Meadows training with her father.

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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About Kimberly
Kimberly is a coffee loving book addict who reads and listens to fictional stories in all genres. She's a self-professed Whovian, as well as a Supernatural, and Sherlock Holmes junkie, She enjoys sharing books, tips, recipes and hosting the Sunday Post. The coffee is always on and she is ready to chat...Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

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98 Responses to “The Murder Complex by Lindsay Cummings”

  1. Melanie (YA Midnight Reads)

    I’ve been seeing some really mixed reactions for this book so I’m really nervous about what I’ll think of it when I read it later this month. Does sound really convincing though!

    Lovely review, Kimba! <33

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I look forward to your thoughts it wasn’t five cups of coffee, but it was engaging, and the end despite the cliffy was strong.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I did not think you were a dystopian fan..more fantasy 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Glad you all are back, I was deathly ill for almost 4 weeks with pneumonia, and for almost a week I didn’t log on other then to see if my post went off. It was two weeks before I visited blogs and another two before I replied to comments. Hope you all were just crazy busy, and no issues.

  2. Melliane

    I saw this one but it’s the first review I read about it. I confess that the world intrigues me, I always love to have something a little different and to see the ideas of the author. Thanks for the review!

    Melliane recently posted: Scorched by Erica Hayes
    • kimbacaffeinate

      It was different, and fast paced. While not perfect, the ending was strong and has me excited to see what happens.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      It has some interesting elements and I am anxious to see how it develops.

  3. Nick

    You have no idea how happy I am to see a glowing review from you, Kim. So many readers haven’t been enjoying this book and it had me a little disappointed, but knowing that you liked it has me more excited now.
    I love the sound of the scary world and the sci-fi elements. I’m crossing my fingers that I’ll love this as much as you did.
    Lovely review, Kim!

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I liked the obscurity, and darker elements. I am surprised the fast pace didn’t appeal to more people. I think the lack of or backseat romance may have disappointed some.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Too bad, I like to read 3 or 4 reviews and look to see if the things they didn’t like will be things that turn me off.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I enjoyed the dual pov’s and Zephyr’s was shrouded in a little mystery, so it was cool seeing his story unfold.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I hope to read the prequel as well Jenea 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Yep and it was one that will have you itching for book two.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I am really glad I read it, hope you pick it up 🙂

  4. Shy

    This is next up for me to read. Glad you liked it though. I have heard nothing but good things about it

    • kimbacaffeinate

      enjoy Shy, I look forward to your thoughts

    • kimbacaffeinate

      It has a good premise and I liked the blending of science fiction elements

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Sorry to hear that I haven’t looked at any yet.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      It has an interesting premise Stephanie 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I saw that, and I plan to read the novella!

  5. Lori

    I’ve seen a few reviews for this book and they’ve all been 4 or 5 stars so I plan to add it to my list. Sounds like a great page-turner and the sci-fi element sounds intriguing! Thanks for sharing 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Good to know Lori, someone commented that they had only seen negative reviews, but I enjoyed this 🙂

  6. Lenore

    This one is in my TBR. I had planned to read it sooner rather than later, but then saw some mixed reactions. I’m glad to hear that you like it! Thanks for the review.

    Lenore recently posted: Sunday Post #6
    • kimbacaffeinate

      I look forward to hearing your thoughts Lenore!

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Enjoy Michelle, and I am the same way I do not need a romance in dystopian novels.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Enjoy Trish, and the romance is just a little ripple.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Oh it is a horrible world to live in and the author really brought the harsh reality to life, the struggle to obtain a job to feed their families was a think of nightmares.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I was worried too, and while not perfect, it was dark, and vivid. Which I loved.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I really liked him and his struggles. He was a little gaga over Meadow, and the author did a great job of showing his inner turmoil.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      thanks Sherry I would love to see your take on it.

  7. Tanja

    Woha this sounds even darker than I though it would be. I like it! 🙂 I have heard really interesting things about the story and I must say that Zephyr (has an awesome name) and sounds really great. Great review, Kim 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      It is! The author really brought the harsh reality of this world to life.

  8. Dre

    It seems like a lot of books for YA are getting into the dark and gritty theme. I do like the premise of this book, and I might actually try it out. I’m still on a reading slump, though, so it’s been a bit hard finishing anything. And I like the names Meadow and Zephyr 😀

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I am sorry to hear you are in a reading slump still. For me, I tend to like the darker young adult reads,

  9. Giselle

    Although I’ve been seeing mixed reviews of this one I’m still highly curious about it. The dual POV and fast pacing are both things I enjoy in this genre and the whole dark, twisted aspect of the plot is def. right up my alley. Glad you liked it, Kimba!

  10. kimbacaffeinate

    I do love a good assassin too Braine. Thanks!

  11. Greg

    I’ve been curious about this one, it seems like it may be a little more personal- more focused on the characters than the setting- or at least that’s the impression I get. This sounds like a winner.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Yes, while we get a very good impression of the world they live in, the tale does centralize on the two main characters.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I am going to read it too Christy, I am hoping it gives some insight into how we got to this point beyond what we already know.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Enjoy Paij! This was different and I am anxious to continue.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I think you will find the why, how fascinating 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Yeah cliffies..I have a love/hate thing with them. I want to know now, but on the other hand it does keep me excited about the next book.

      • Jan

        I agree, Kimba. I think with a series I’ve read more than one book I don’t dislike it quite as much. I just want the book soon! I new series, however, and I’m more likely to regard it unfavorably…LOL

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Hopefully the wait for book two isn’t long 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      The lack of romance and the way it unfolds only providing information as needed to keep an air of mystery may turn some off, that and the darker aspects.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Meadow was fleshed out and I loved how the author was able to show the many sides of her and occasionally remind us that she is young.

  12. Chyna

    I’m glad you enjoyed this book. I ended up hating it a lot…the story was very lame…and the lead acts like a cocky bastard (Some day I hope her arrogance will get her killed) I just felt utter rage for this book. it had so much potential but it let me down. 🙁 I recent reviewed this but I feel unsatisfied huhu

    Chyna recently posted: Sale, Top reads Recommendations!
    • kimbacaffeinate

      I am sorry that is what you took away from the book Chyna.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I hope you give it a go, thanks Stephanie 🙂

  13. Kristin

    I had a very mixed reaction when I read this one although I ultimately rated it the same as you. It was good, I agree but left many unanswered questions plus I didn’t really connect with Meadow being special.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Meadow was a tough nut to crack, and I got her, but really hope she is fleshed out more in the next book.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      They have been mixed, this is different and dark. I think a lot of people struggled with Meadow, but I kind of got her and think we will see her fleshed out more as the series progresses. I hope you give it a go!