Book Review + Giveaway: Strings by David Estes

"A wonderful retelling of the Pinocchio story...I simply couldn’t put this book down."  Rysa Walker, bestselling author of TIMEBOUND

Title: Strings
Author: David Estes
Genre: YA Fantasy/Dystopia
Publication Date:  February 15th, 2016
Page Count:  354 pages
Format:  eARC
Source: Author in exchange for an honest review

Sometimes the strings that tie us down are the same strings that set us free.

Sixteen-year-old Pia has always lived in a mysterious facility where mechanical strings control her existence. She plays apprentice to her father, Gio, in performing nanotech designs for the Company, and she soon suspects there are diabolical human forces behind the manufactured reality of her world. 

Though her childhood memories and the origins of the strings remain strangely elusive, she begins to find solace with the introduction of two unlikely friends: daring, irrational Sofia, and calm, tender Marco. 

As the truths of the past and present unravel together, Pia must find a way to free herself from her strings and escape the facility before facing the wrath of the unstable head of security, Mr. Davis. But to gain her freedom, she must navigate the dangers posed by Davis and by her suspicious new friends to find the real identity of the puppeteer. 

If Pia can succeed in revealing the secrets of the Company, she may very well find the independence she so desperately seeks. But in her controlled world nothing is as it seems, and the closer she gets to the truth, the graver the consequences. 
*The Reader's Review*

My rating: 4/5 stars

This is not the first time that I wish to get inside David Estes’ mind and explore all his crazy and absolutely awesome ideas for storytelling. I know there are MANY fairytale retellings out there, from Beauty and the Beast to Cinderella, and though there is no doubt each one is fantastic (at least the ones I’ve read), I have to say this retelling of PINOCCHIO (I know!!!) is one of the most imaginative retellings I’ve had the pleasure of reading.

First of all, the STRINGS. The idea of strings controlling the main character, Pia, is absolutely terrifying and later on, genius. How they make her do things unwillingly, how they are attached to 15 places in her body making her the human Pinocchio. She can move around thanks to the special ceiling made from a substance that allows the strings to pass freely, but one wrong step and the strings can turn deadly. But Pia is not the only one controlled by these strings, her father is also kept prisoner in the compound that forces them to work endlessly on technology never getting a day off in their lives, until the Company gets new management. THEN SO MANY THINGS HAPPEN.

I deeply enjoyed reading Strings and although it has very few characters, all of them were so darn interesting, starting with tiny Fig (who is Pinocchio’s cricket but as a nanobot!). Seriously, David Estes KNOWS how to make the best awesome friends. I loved Fig like no other character in this story because he was funny, sarcastic and loyal to Pia. Team Fig all the way!

And Marcos? He made me swoon hard. He’s not your usual male character and that’s why I loved him all the more. YAY for diversity! That’s all I can say about him for now. But you SHOULD meet him soon.

All in all, Strings turned out to be a wonderful read and strengthened my resolve to read the rest of David Estes’ books. Strings is actually a standalone (I think) so if you want to start reading books by this author, then I definitely recommend to start with this one.



About the Author

David Estes is the author of more than 20 science fiction and fantasy novels that have received hundreds of thousands of downloads worldwide, including The Moon Dwellers, Fire Country, Slip, Brew, and his new SciFi Pinocchio retelling, Strings. He lives in Hawaii with his inspiring Aussie wife, Adele, rambunctious son, Beau, and naughty cat, Bailey. When he's not writing, you'll likely find him at the beach swimming, snorkeling, or reading under an umbrella.



  1. I read one book by this author and I thought it was pretty great, so I don't know why I'm hesitating picking up another one. AND you said diversity so count me in!

  2. What!? Wait... a Pinocchio re-telling? Wow! this is the first time I heard about it, I almost can't believe it!
    It sounds absolutely fantastic and original. I WANT to read it so bad!
    Amazing review, Melissa! Thanks so much for sharing about this book!