Audiobook Review: Archetype by M.D. Waters

Posted February 27, 2014 by Felicia S in 2014 Read, 3.25 Wine Glasses, Audiobook, Reviews / 14 Comments

Audiobook Review: Archetype by M.D. WatersSource: Audiobook Review, NetGalley EBook Review, Provided by Penguin Audio

Format: Audiobook

Archetype by M. D. Waters
Narrator: Khristine Hvam
Length: 10 hrs and 12 mins

Date Read: February 2014

Genre: Dystopian

Introducing a breathtakingly inventive futuristic suspense novel about one woman who rebels against everything she is told to believe.

Emma wakes in a hospital, with no memory of what came before. Her husband, Declan, a powerful, seductive man, provides her with new memories, but her dreams contradict his stories, showing her a past life she can’t believe possible: memories of war, of a camp where girls are trained to be wives, of love for another man. Something inside her tells her not to speak of this, but she does not know why. She only knows she is at war with herself.

Suppressing those dreams during daylight hours, Emma lets Declan mold her into a happily married woman and begins to fall in love with him. But the day Noah stands before her, the line between her reality and dreams shatters.

In a future where women are a rare commodity, Emma fights for freedom but is held captive by the love of two men—one her husband, the other her worst enemy. If only she could remember which is which. . . .

The first novel in a two-part series, Archetype heralds the arrival of a truly memorable character—and the talented author who created her.

More Information:
Publisher: Penguin, Penguin Audio
Series: Archetype #1


Listened/Read for Review (Penguin Audio/Netgalley)
Overall Rating: 3.25
Story Rating: 3.50
Character Rating: 3.00

Audio Rating: 4.00 (Not part of the overall rating)

NOTE: I am in the minority where Archetype by M.D. Waters is concerned. Most people felt the story was brilliant, unique, and outstanding. I just never connected with the characters and the end just didn’t work for me. The writing is spectacular though so please give the book a try if it looks interesting to you!

Story Thoughts: Confession: I actually had this book rated a little higher until the epilogue. I don’t know why but it didn’t feel like an organic end to the story to me. That being said, I did enjoy the rest of Archetype. There were times I was on the edge of my seat wondering what was going to happen or where the story was going. It was interesting mix of science, dystopian, and medical thriller. The world building was outstanding including science that we are familiar with now coupled with a possible outcome that I could totally believe.

Character Thoughts: UGH! I hate when I can’t connect with the characters. I am going to be deliberately vague here because there are spoilers in identifying the characters by name. In Archetype, I just never really got that character connection I so desperatly need in a dystopian or apocalyptic world. I need someone to root for or someone to wish into a fiery grave. I didn’t feel the “bad” guy was bad enough, the “good” guy was good enough, or that the leading lady was sympathetic enough. I did feel for Emma’s situation but just not for Emma (if that makes any sense at all). The only character I had any connection with was the Dr. that I hoped would trip and take a needle to the eye! I just needed the character connection and it wasn’t there for me.

Audio Thoughts:

Narrated By Khristine Hvam / Length: 10 hrs and 12 mins

Khristine is one of my favorite narrators and she did an excellent job with Archetype. Her portrayal of Emma’s process of figuring out her situation and the emotions of that journey matched the story very well. Her male voices were strong, the pacing was spot on, and the cadence was engaging. I highly recommend listening to Archetype on audio.

Final Thoughts: Even though the characters did not work for me, the story was interesting and engaging. I will probably pick up book 2 (which I am almost sure there will be) to see if it changes my mind about book 1!


FTC Disclosure


Story Rating
3.5 / 5
Character Rating
3 / 5
Narrator Rating
4 / 5
Felicia S
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14 responses to “Audiobook Review: Archetype by M.D. Waters

  1. I really don’t think this is for me, and I hate it when you can’t connect to the main characters. Sometimes the story itself is worth it though, to keep on reading.

  2. I really hate when I can’t connect with the character either. I’m feeling a little Stepford Wives vibe with this? The “perfect” wife? (Or am I projecting because I want a Stepford Wives story?)

  3. This one has me curious, and I am so sorry you didn’t connect to the characters. Usually if I can at least understand their actions I can enjoy it even if I am not a huge fan..but it almost sounds like they weren’t believable to you.

  4. I know what you mean! I hate it when I can’t connect to the characters. And like you, I’m an ending girl and those endings have to make sense. I am intrigued by what you said about the writing, but I may wait to see if things are corrected in book 2 before I try it. So, you need to review that one too… 😉

  5. I know what you mean about character disconnect, it can make or break a story, and Epilogues are tricky things aren’t they! They either work perfectly or not.

  6. Hmmm… I have yet to read/listen to a dystopian novel. I’ve enjoyed Khristine Hvam’s narration in the past, but after reading your review, I’m not sure this book would be a good intro to this genre. Thanks for your honesty!

    • Actually this one might work better for you than me. I am not kidding when I say everyone else adored it. I also think for me the problem might be fixed in book 2 (mostly because towards the end I was beginning to get the character connection I was craving).

  7. I have heard nothing but good things about this one Felicia, so it was interesting to read a little bit of a differing opinion. I completely understand where you’re coming from though, I have to have that character connection as well, and if I don’t it doesn’t matter how brilliant the story might be, I just can’t get into it:)

    • I almost feel bad not loving this book. I did like it but it was missing a connection with me through the characters. Plus being such an “ender” the epilogue really did throw me off!

  8. I’ve been interested in this book for a while. Gah, but not being able to connect with characters is huge!!! Still might give it a try though. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

    • EVERYONE has loved it except for me (or at least the reviews I have read) so I have determined it might have been my mood at the time of reading or one of those books that I need to read both to connect with. 🙂