Once We Were - Kat Zhang *Genre* YA Dystopian*Rating* 3.5 Actual Rating*My Thoughts*“Once We Were” is the second novel in The Hybrid Chronicles and in essence, it is the bridge between “What's Left of Me” and the sequel to the trilogy itself which releases sometime in 2014. They Hybrid Chronicles are based on the fact that people are born with 2 souls and that at some point in their lives, one soul becomes dominant, while the recessive soul is supposed to fade away completely. Addie is supposed to be the dominant, while Eva is the recessive soul.The plot doesn't really move forward all that much in Once We Were until the last part of the story when most of the real action takes place as well as the set up for the finale. For those who have read What’s Left of Me, you already know that Addie/Eva, along with Ryan/Devon, and Hally/Lissa have escaped from Nornand Clinic with the help of the Hybrid resistance in the form of Peter, Emalia, Jackson, and Dr. Lyanne. We are introduced to key new hybrids in the form of Christoph, Sabine/Josie, and Cordelia/Katy all of whom were helped by the resistance.What we do see is Eva's transformation from the recessive soul, in to making Addie the weaker character in the book especially when she starts listening to Sabine and her plans on fighting back against what she sees as the injustices done by the government against the hybrids. Sabine really pushes Eva’s buttons in every way imaginable to the point where she is left vulnerable and at odds with Addie.Eva makes decisions that may or may not be considered all that ideal or necessary. Most of this happens because Addie/Eva are both experimenting with finding their own independence and lives away from the other while experimenting with being a teenager and allowing the other to take over for a time.If you haven't already started reading this series, I would say to you that you should. Zhang's world building is interesting and creative in that she creates an alternative reality world where Hybrids supposedly started wars against the Non Hybrids (Including World War I, and II) and thus the government has decided to “fix” the hybrids once and for-all or deny them access into the country.Let me say that although I ended up liking this book in the end, the pacing is excruciatingly slow and painful and at times. The so called romance threw me for a loop because I just couldn't make sense out of it. I won’t spoil anything by telling you who the romance is between, or why it made me sit up and scratch my head. You’ll just have to find out for yourself. I will also say that there is a key official who saves Addie/Eva, that apparently is going to have more to say in determining which way this story ends. *Recvd via Edelweiss 06/25/2013* Expected publication: September 17th 2013 by HarperCollins