Nikki Blue: Source of Trouble (Nikki, #2)
Thank you, Jack Chaucer, for providing me this book so that I could read and review it!
Wow. This book was so, so different from Streaks of Blue (#1), which told the story of Nicole Janicek as she befriended an outcast boy to try to stop him from committing a mass shooting at her high school. In that story, Nikki is a poised, self-confident, meritorious young woman who does the right thing because she knows it is right. In Nikki Blue, three years later, she is no longer that girl. She's confused, she's impulsive, and she's a little destructive. She ignores red flags that are right in front of her eyes, to her near-peril. I missed the old Nicole. Even young people who are trying to find themselves still retain the essence of themselves, but that didn't seem to be the case here. Her transformation was a little too abrupt for me.
It was also a much longer book, and it moved a little slowly. But I did see why all the plot development was necessary, as we basically started a whole new story—this one has almost very little to do with the first book, other than retaining the same characters and their relation to one another. The concept was intriguing, though. And it definitely fell firmly into today's political climate, with the major themes of society's desensitization to climate change, Tesla and other organizations' race to Mars, and even young people's struggle to pay for college and find a stable, promising career.
All in all, I felt that Nikki Blue fell firmly into the category of "second books in a trilogy that help get you from book one to book three."