ARC Review: THE ONES WE’RE MEANT TO FIND by Joan He

Rating: ★★★★★

Summary: One of the most twisty, surprising, engaging page-turner YAs you’ll read this year—We Were Liars with sci-fi scope, Lost with a satisfying resolution.

Cee awoke on an abandoned island three years ago. With no idea of how she was marooned, she only has a rickety house, an old android, and a single memory: she has a sister, and Cee needs to find her.

STEM prodigy Kasey wants escape from the science and home she once trusted. The eco-city—Earth’s last unpolluted place—is meant to be sanctuary for those commited to planetary protection, but it’s populated by people willing to do anything for refuge, even lie. Now, she’ll have to decide if she’s ready to use science to help humanity, even though it failed the people who mattered most.

For long, I couldn’t decide which book to review as my first blog post. Sure I’ve read a couple books in 2021 so far but I lacked the excitement of reviewing them as a first on my blog. Then one day I got approved for The Ones We’re Meant to Find, which was my most anticipated read of this year. And after finishing it, I was sure this book would be the first.

Without further ado, below is my first ever blog post telling you why I loved reading this book!

Read the first sentence of the summary again, because that’s exactly what this book is — twisty and page-turning. Reading it was one hell of an experience, my mind is still reeling from that ending.

At its heart, this book is about sisterhood. We have the outgoing Cee, stuck on an abandoned island and Kasey the science girl, trying to decide if she’ll save the world she struggles to understand. Both of them connected by their will to find each other.

These sisters who now have my heart, drew me in from the beginning chapters with their contrasts and dynamics. Joan He’s storytelling power is truly a marvel, for the small details in their narratives and the metaphors she wove into their thoughts and dialogues wrecked me. I kept questioning how/if they would finally unite — the answer was delivered in a completely different way than what I expected.

While people who’ve read this debate over which sister they like more, I found parts of myself in both Cee and Kasey—which, I think, is the main reason why I was so invested in their story. Cee’s emotions and Kasey’s logic felt personal to me.

But The Ones We’re Meant to Find is also so much more. It’s a story of the meaning of humanity, of love, of the bonds we have and the bonds we develop. It’s about what we are willing to do to survive. Unknowingly it compels us to think of the impact our actions, intentional or not, have on our surroundings. With its take on environmental changes and privilege, awfully relevant to current times, the book is also thought-provoking.

❛Intentions, good or bad, didn’t impact people. Consequences did.❜

Another aspect I really enjoyed was the worldbuilding. It took a while to grasp the techy terms but a couple chapters in I was able to visualise it well. The eco-city, the bots, the island, the sea; all combined by Joan to create the perfect sci-fi backdrop for the emotions and twists to follow. Can we appreciate how creative Joan got with the ranks? The atmosphere truly read like a Studio Ghibli film. And as someone who adores nature imageries, it was a delight to read the parts set on the island.

The twists!!! They were so cleverly woven into the plot that I was glued to the pages, eager to know more. I definitely paused reading to stare into the void at some point. There were times when a plot twist clicked and immediately went “ohhhh” after connecting it to an event that happened previously. Each of the characters made their decisions because of their own experiences or because of who they’ve become. And it made sense, why the characters did what they did which only made the revelations more effective. Also, A+ for foreshadowing (Joan how dare you).

The Ones We’re Meant to Find has climbed up to being one of my all time favourite books. If you want to read (and totally SHOULD) a book that blends sci-fi and dystopian elements along with an engaging prose and characters that are likely to stay with you, this should be on your immediate TBR.

Thank you Netgalley and the publisher for the ARC!

❛The only place Kasey still found Celia was in her dreams.❜

The Ones We’re Meant to Find by Joan He releases May 4th 2021

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Preorder here

CW: terminal illness, suicide, violence (including choking), death, death of parents (off-page), death of a loved one, drowning, vomiting, large-scale natural disasters and mass casualties, gore.

If you need therapy someone to share your thoughts and feels on the book after you’ve read it, come talk to me on Twitter!

73 thoughts on “ARC Review: THE ONES WE’RE MEANT TO FIND by Joan He”

  1. Pingback: March 2021 Wrap-Up
  2. Such a great first post! I loved the relationships Joan He created in Descendant of the Crane and can’t wait to see what she does with the sisters in TOWMTF 😍

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Gauri I can’t believe this is your first post, everything is done up so well and that was such a thoughtful review! 100% agree with everyone in the comments up there, your blog aesthetic is dazzling!! So happy to hear that you loved The Ones We’re Meant to Find, the sisterhood and climate change backdrop sounds like an incredible combination… I’m even more excited to get to my arc after your review! Lovely post and welcome to the blogosphere! 🥰

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Ahhh congrats on launching your blog Gauri, everything looks so gorgeous!! 😍 And I love the review!!! I’m so happy to hear you enjoyed this book, I’ve been wanting to check out Joan He’s work for a while and this has just reminded to get on with that.

    Great post!! I can’t wait to read more from you ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ahh thank you so much!!! i’m sure the sister’s relationship will be a delight for you, hope you like the book when you read it 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  5. You’ve written an amazing (first) review. I’m looking forward to read this one when it releases, you review made me even more excited. The cover is so beautiful as well! Can’t wait to read more blogpost from you soon!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. welcome to the book blogging community, Gauri! so so happy you’re here, and i’m looking forward to reading more of your reviews and posts 😊 this is such a well-written review!! The Ones We’re Meant to Find is one of my most anticipated 2021 releases, and after reading your review, i’m even more excited to read this now – it sounds like it’ll hurt me in all the right places :’)

    Liked by 1 person

  7. ahh welcome to the blogosphere!! your blog is so gorgeous, and i love the way all the colours go with each other!! also i got an ARC of TOWMTF as well, and i cannot wait to be hit by ALL the feels!! congratulations on launching your blog!! lovely review 💖💖

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thank you so so much ahaana!!! 💕 hope you have fun reading it!! (also, had a look at your latest post and i love!! the interview)

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Congratulations on your blog once again Gauri!! ❤ Also: "Unknowingly it compels us to think of the impact our actions, intentional or not, have on our surroundings. With its take on environmental changes and privilege, awfully relevant to current times, the book is also thought-provoking." What a fantastic paragraph? This was a wonderful review!! Ahhhh I am even more excited to read this book now!!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Congrats on launching your book blog and your very first post! Nice review to an amazing book that I need to read 🤣 just followed you btw!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Congratulations on your blog launch and first post! And what a post to start with. I’m very excited to read this book after hearing so much praise about it. Lovely review 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  11. yay! congrats on launching your blog, gauri! it looks absolutely amazing.

    as for this review, you’ve wonderfully described every moment of me while i was reading the book too. the twists and turns and the foreshadowing just threw me into a loop. i couldn’t believe what i was reading. i loved both cee and kasey. like you said, they represent different parts of a person and i could relate to that as well.

    i can’t wait to see more blog posts from you ❤️️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ahhh thank you belle!!! so happy that you connected to my views on the book, can’t wait to interact with your posts❤️❤️

      Liked by 1 person

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