Over the past few months, I've seen an unusually large number of articles about Samantha Shannon, the college-aged debut author with a seven-book deal whom some have touted as "the next J.K. Rowling." After reading it, I have to say, I think the hype was premature and unwarranted.
Shannon obviously has some interesting ideas and I've no doubt many will want to see where she takes her story. However, her characters never felt fleshed out, her plot (and plot holes) was messy at best (with more than one "too convenient" twist), and the writing/presentation structure read like a rough draft.
Overall, I think this book was okay, but it wanted the liberal use of an editor's red pen, and, quite frankly, I'm shocked by some of the rookie errors I saw: wasted narration bogging down the first chapter that was later proved redundant, an abundance of telling instead of showing, and Twilight-esqe fanfiction moments to name a few (not to mention the typos). (I'm also still a tad ticked that she took the only nice character in the whole lot and decided he was gay out of nowhere (no mention/hints before or after), seemingly for the sole purpose of keeping the main character unattached (from the guy she liked) so she'd be free to make out with the ancient alien later.)
I would hope that the author's craft improves as she continues the series, but I don't know that I care enough about her characters or world to stick around for the ride.