Friday, 26 July 2013

New Release: Branded by Abi Ketner and Missy Kalicicki

Fifty years ago the Commander came into power and murdered all who opposed him. In his warped mind, the seven deadly sins were the downfall of society. He created the Hole where sinners are branded according to their sins and might survive a few years. At best.
Now LUST wraps around my neck like blue fingers strangling me. I’ve been accused of a crime I didn’t commit and now the Hole is my new home.

Darkness. Death. Violence. Pain.

Now every day is a fight for survival. But I won’t die. I won’t let them win.

The Hole can’t keep me. The Hole can’t break me.
I am more than my brand. I’m a fighter.
My name is Lexi Hamilton, and this is my story.

Released June 2013. 

Here is my review of Branded:

*I received a free copy of this book from the author through the YA Dystopian book club in exchange for an honest review*

Lexi lives in a society where the 7 deadly sins will put you in a brutal form of prison called THe Hole. Lexi is wrongly accused of lust and sent there without trial, branded with a blue collar on her neck. The only thing that stands between her and the rapists and murderers is her personal guard Cole.

This was totally different from any dystopian novel that I've read. This was the most brutal society I've read about and the thought of living in it horrifies me. The guards are as deadly as the inmates, there are no rules or protection from psycho rapists and murderers, there is no safe place to be, little sign of humanity and a constant fear for your life. Yet in Cole, his dog Zeus, Dr Sutton and his dying patient, Lexi does find some moments of humanity among the despair. The plot is scary, cruel and sad as you watch the suffering of so many different people. There were a couple of twists that I really didn't expect and plenty action to enjoy. The characters are so well written that you instantly care what happens to them-they are beautifully developed. I was reduced to tears at one point which is rare for me with a book but it shows how much I cared about what was happening. And I loved Zeus! I was worrying all the time about his survival.

We also learn a lot about Lexi and the horrible life that she suffered before her arrest and the betrayals that she suffered. This is done gradually through the book so that you learn gradually and not through big info dumps. Yes there is a romance here with Lexi and Cole but it is slow burning and it only adds to the story. I'm not a fan of overly romantic stories but this one had the balance right and I enjoyed it a lot. The writing style was uncomplicated and the authors did a great job of mixing the horror with the hope, telling the story to keep you hooked.

There wasn't anything wrong with this book, no real negatives that I could mention. There is a bit in the middle that slows a bit more than I'd have liked but nothing that detracts from the story in any way.

This will appeal to dystopian fans of all ages and I look forward to more books by the authors. Great job ladies!
star rating photo: Four Star Rating 4stars.png

Where can I buy this book?

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