Synopsis: The Year is 2093. The world is grey and infected, unsafe for human inhabitation. We live sheltered, under The Veil. I live a life just like yours. Until the day that all changes.Who am I? I’m Anna. But who is this man who claims to know me…who knows more about me than I do? He’s shown me a glimpse beyond my world into one I have been told doesn’t exist. Into a world I’ve been told doesn’t even have the CHANCE to exist. Do I trust him? If I do it could cost me everything. My family, my friends. My life. He says he knows a different way, a better way. Do I risk everything to follow a stranger? Do I dare look with my own eyes? Do I risk being deceived? What if the life I am already living is the deception?- From the ashen past and out of the present world the few and the outcast take a stand for what they believe. For what they have seen with their own eyes– and know to be true. These few know that the world has been lied to, lulled into a dangerous sleep. They’ve become a drowsy people, ignorant of The Monarch’s ominous design. Her memories stolen and her past rewritten, will Anna be able to lift the shroud of lies, to escape the confines of a life she has always known and accepted to be true? And if she does…will she survive to see the truth revealed?
My review: I don’t appear to as in love with this book as other reviewers.
The good stuff: I believe the author is about 14 years old. A published book at that age is quite the feat and overall I enjoyed the premise and the characters. They do develop over the course over the story and and that development is quite integral as they discover their memories have been ‘rewritten’ by the evil President Petrov. I liked that we didn’t get the big reveal of the ultimate bad guy – The Monarch until the end even if (possibly because Young Adult dystopian is saturated at the minute) it was a bit obvious.
The synopsis’ on various sites don’t say whether this is the first in a series but while there is a definite ending of one part of the tale it does set up some possible next adventures. And that’s another thing that I enjoyed. This part of the story had an ending. So often these days the authors deliberately end books in a way that means you have to get the next one. Or maybe it’s the publishers at fault trying to trick you into spending more money. With this I have an ending and a personal choice as to whether I want to read the next one
The bit I didn’t like: Helen’s Amazon bio mentions her spirituality and church. The story is quite heavy with Christianity including a big chunk where parts of the bible are re-told and I’m really not sure why that needed to be in. It felt a bit heavy handed. There’s having faith and then beating others around the head with it. Then again … if there are plans for a sequel I do like the idea of a deity turning up with some form of rapture and the bad guys getting the comeuppance. I think I need to know more about what part this will play going forward to really understand the need for it. I’ve read books where the lead characters have faith and done right it adds to the story without becoming the focal point.
But! She’s a young adult and this is her first novel and it’s a good debut. I hope she continues to write and develop and publish more stories.
Free arc from netgalley