Quickie Review: Fire and Flood by Victoria Scott (Fire and Flood #1)

Fire and Flood | Victoria Scott | Scholastic Press | Fire and Flood #1 | 5 Stars | Source: Bought | 305 pages Young Adult | Dystopia
Release Date: February 25th, 2014
Goodreads

Goodreads Synopsis:

Tella Holloway is losing it. Her brother is sick, and when a dozen doctors can’t determine what’s wrong, her parents decide to move to Montana for the fresh air. She’s lost her friends, her parents are driving her crazy, her brother is dying—and she’s helpless to change anything.

Until she receives mysterious instructions on how to become a Contender in the Brimstone Bleed. It’s an epic race across jungle, desert, ocean, and mountain that could win her the prize she desperately desires: the Cure for her brother’s illness. But all the Contenders are after the Cure for people they love, and there’s no guarantee that Tella (or any of them) will survive the race.

The jungle is terrifying, the clock is ticking, and Tella knows she can’t trust the allies she makes. And one big question emerges: Why have so many fallen sick in the first place?

Victoria Scott’s breathtaking novel grabs readers by the throat and doesn’t let go.

Review:

This was bought on a whim and read within a couple of days. I think 3 days is the best turn around time I have ever had. This is testament to how consumed I was by this novel. I couldn’t put it down!

I really enjoyed our main characters in this novel. Tella’s development was  an interesting one to see. On the one hand she was quite vain and selfish. On the other hand, she was constantly grieving for her brother. I think we have all seen someone close to us in pain at some point and seeing Tella in this pendulum of a life made her easy to empathize with. Side characters also were incredibly insightful. All had a reason to be there and a family to fight for and seeing all of their individual stories added more depth to the tale.

Some of the my favourite parts of the novel were dedicated to the Pandoras. They are basically animals and companions that help the contestants. There was a range of animals with different abilities and seeing their interactions with the main characters and each other was something I thoroughly enjoyed reading about. Some of the pandoras were wole characters on their own.

When I read the synopsis for this one I immediately thought of The Hunger Games. The only thing the two series have in common is that they are both dystopia/fantasy. That is it. The Brimstone Bleed is a completely different concept. The origins and motives behind it are something that kept me guessing until the end and I can’t wait to read further into it in the sequels to come.

To say I loved this novel is an understatement. It has been a long time since I have just wanted to sit, read and forget what is going on around me for a while. This novel provided with me with an escape into an amazing world with kick ass characters. If you want a dystopia at the top of its game, this is the one for you.

Goodreads Average: 3.91/4 (Out of 2,097 ratings)

EXTRAS:

As soon As I finished Fire and Flood, I tweeted Victoria Scott (@VictoriaScottYA) and asked her how long the series would be. There will be a sequel called Salt and Stone and out next year. She also said that possibly a third one may come out as well. I hope so!

Review: When She Woke by Hillary Jordan

When She WokeTitle: When She Woke | Author: Hillary Jordan Harper Books | Stand Alone | 4 Stars | Source: Review | 341 pages Adult | Dystopia
Release Date: October 4th, 2011

Goodreads

Goodreads Synopsis:
“Hannah Payne’s life has been devoted to church and family, but after her arrest, she awakens to a nightmare: she is lying on a table in a bare room, covered only by a paper gown, with cameras broadcasting her every move to millions at home, for whom observing new Chromes – criminals whose skin colour has been genetically altered to match the class of their crime – is a new and sinister form of entertainment. Hannah is a Red; her crime is murder. The victim, according to the State of Texas, was her unborn child, and Hannah is determined to protect the identity of the father, a public figure with whom she’s shared a fierce and forbidden love.

WHEN SHE WOKE is a fable about a stigmatized woman struggling to navigate an America of a not-too-distant future – where the line between church and state has been eradicated and convicted felons are no longer imprisoned and rehabilitated but chromed and released back into the population to survive as best they can. In seeking a path to safety in an alien and hostile world, Hannah unknowingly embarks on a path of self-discovery that forces her to question the values she once held true and the righteousness of a country that politicizes faith.”

Review

When She Woke is a dystopian novel set in the not so distant future. There are only a few changes compared to what we have in the world today.
It began with a great start, providing us with Hannah’s current situation (“red as a stop sign”) and in parts one and two flickering back in time and forward to the present day in order to discover why she is in this situation.

For me parts one and two (it’s set in to four) of the novel were a little slow – even though they were beautifully written making me experience the burning lights of the chrome prison and the sorrow of aborting her baby – they still seemed to drag.

However this aside part three is where the plot really began to take off! There were numerous ups and downs that kept me glued to the pages and finishing the final two parts in a matter of hours.
When it comes to character development, I adore what Hannah has become. She has gone from a quiet only-speak-when-spoken-to girl to a bright, opinionated woman that has no doubt in herself or her actions. 

All though I did have the initial struggle with the first two parts I would recommend this too all book lovers who want to try a new kind of dystopia. Be warned this is more adult than Young Adult. It drops the C bomb (in there right context, though. If there is one) and there is quite a bit of swearing in places. 

Goodreads Average: 3.68/5 (out of 14,078)

Want to buy it? Amazon UK | Amazon US | The Book Depository