The Rules

The Rules

3.94 (5,446 ratings by Goodreads)
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1. Never trust anyone.
2. Remember they are "always "searching.
3. Don't get involved.
4. Keep your head down.
5. Don't fall in love.
Five simple rules. Ariane Tucker has followed them since the night she escaped from the genetics lab where she was created, the result of combining human and extraterrestrial DNA. Ariane's survival--and that of her adoptive father--depends on her ability to blend in among the full-blooded humans, to hide in plain sight from those who seek to recover their lost (and expensive) "project."
But when a cruel prank at school goes awry, it puts her in the path of Zane Bradshaw, the police chief's son and someone who sees too much. Someone who really sees "her." After years of trying to be invisible, Ariane finds the attention frightening--and utterly intoxicating. Suddenly, nothing is simple anymore, especially not the rules.
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Product details

  • 12-17
  • Hardback | 410 pages
  • 149 x 215 x 32mm | 590g
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 1423153286
  • 9781423153283
  • 569,929

About Stacey Kade

Stacey Kade ( is the author of the Ghost and the Goth Trilogy: The Ghost and the Goth, Queen of the Dead, and Body & Soul. She lives in the suburbs of Chicago with her husband and three retired racing greyhounds. Look for her on Facebook and Twitter (@StaceyKade).
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Rating details

5,446 ratings
3.94 out of 5 stars
5 36% (1,935)
4 34% (1,868)
3 22% (1,171)
2 6% (335)
1 3% (137)

Our customer reviews

Hmmm...another hard review to write. On one hand, I had several faults with this book (which I will break down later in the review). On the other hand, I'm in love with Ariane's character. She was amazing, resourceful, introspective, and disconcerting all at the same time. I flew through this book because I couldn't get enough of her interesting perspective, her fascination with human objects and culture, and her struggles trying to define her identity. Growing up in a lab as a human-alien hybrid while simultaneously being able to hear people's jumbled thoughts and emotions apparently results in a lot of quirks. While some of them were not so realistic (you've literally spent 10 years in the school system and you haven't realized that using a pen when you're doing math is abnormal?) a lot of them were really interesting. Ariane hoards, establishes fixed routines, and is terrible at understanding idioms. I liked that weirdness and her paranoia about being too obviously non-human was an interesting result to her interaction with other people. I think the author did a great job of establishing her "strangeness" within comfortable bounds. I also really enjoyed Zane's POV chapters and his own perception of Ariane. He recognizes that she's different, but can't pinpoint the reason for it, and reveals in his narrative that he's been aware of Ariane's peculiarities and personality for a lot longer than she realized. Their growing relationship was funny and quirky and so much different than a lot of the YA relationships out there, which was awesome. It was a slower-burn, but when it did pick up it was swoon-worthy. However, I did find that the plot (get back at the most popular mean girl) to be a little out of place. It just seemed like another spin-off of the typical high school story: unpopular shy girl gets back at mean popular girl for reasons and gets the guy. While it didn't follow this trope exactly, it was a little tiring to see that the only thing this girl could do with her life and gifts was to publicly humiliate another girl. One of the accompanied reasons for this was because Ariane was prone to telekinetic outbursts when she was around Rachel; she'd get so angry she'd snap. Rachel, on the other hand, is just plain psycho! She was way too unrealistic a villain and her reasons for her actions were so eye-roll worthy. I think at the end I wondered why the author had to pit girl against girl when there were so many other new angles she could have approached with Ariane's character in a high school setting. The plot took a turn near the last third of the book, which added some much needed tension to the plot. I liked some of the realizations Ariane made about herself, but I'm still at odds whether the ending worked for me or not. In the end, Ariane's character was a breath of fresh air for this book, and the romance was really good! The plot for me didn't quite cut it, and I didn't like that the high school villain was so unrealistic, but overall it was an entertaining read!show more
by Janita Van Dyk
I really enjoyed this first book, the pacing was great, and there was character growth as well as a romance that I cheered for. The Rules sucked me in right away. Even though I was a bit confused on the whys and hows of Ariane's condition, as well as who she replaced and how exactly that worked, I still immediately liked what I was reading, and I wanted more. Though I will say that I expected something different from this book based on the synopsis, but I wasn't disappointed in what I got. Ariane is a mixture of human and alien DNA, and I really like how that gives her strengths, but also weaknesses. Big ones, that she has to deal with. As her back story is revealed little by little, I learn why the Rules are in place, and more about her connection with her "dad" Michael Tucker. Who, for the record, I really admired. I liked how much he cared for her, and his reasoning for taking Ariane in the first place. He is so protective, and their relationship seems so authentic. I connected with Adriane and her feelings of not belonging. That yearn to fit in. It was so sad how she really couldn't get too close with anyone because she doesn't want to draw attention to herself or else the lab she escaped from could notice her. But even though she has the different DNA, it really begs the question what makes a human. She shows the full range of emotions, from anger, protectiveness, and love in its different forms. She has special abilities, so I know that sets her apart, but at her core, how different is she really? And I don't know if having someone as a narrator makes me more susceptible to like someone, but being in Zane's head did that for me. I don't think that I would normally fall for someone in the "in crowd" like him. But seeing that he had some deeper emotional value behind the pretty face, and that even though he was friends with people like Rachel, the "it and mean girl" of their high school, he didn't support all that she stood for or did. As I learned more about his home life, and the more I was in his head, the more that I liked him. He had pure a pure heart underneath the tough exterior and the things that he did to fit in. The romance between the two is sweet, and I really enjoyed those moments. I love how it started out of revenge and then evolved into something else. The twist near the end really got me. I was expecting one part but DEF not the other. I guess I should have read Rule 1: Don't trust anyone more closely. It makes me want to retract one of the statements above that I wrote while in the middle of the book and had started jotting down my thoughts, but it is true for that part in the story, so I will leave it. I am eager for the next book, and sadly can't find much else about it, but I will certainly be watching Ms. Kade's blog and goodreads for more info. Bottom Line: Sweet and fast paced story from two characters that I rooted more
by Brandi Kosiner (Brandi Breathes Books)
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