Book Haul: April 11

The Fire Sermon3

| The Fire Sermon by Francesca Haig |

Another day, another Goodreads Giveaway win! A lucky streak indeed. The Fire Sermon has an incredibly beautiful cover and, with its post-apocalyptic premise, sounds like just the type of book I’ll love! Yet another series on my TBR that I cannot wait to get around to!

| Synopsis |

The Hunger Games meets Cormac McCarthy’s The Road in this richly imagined first novel in a new postapocalyptic trilogy by award-winning poet Francesca Haig.

Four hundred years in the future, the Earth has turned primitive following a nuclear fire that laid waste to civilization and nature. Though the radiation fallout has ended, for some unknowable reason every person is born with a twin. Of each pair one is an Alpha – physically perfect in every way – and the other an Omega burdened with deformity, small or large.

With the Council ruling an apartheid-like society, Omegas are branded and ostracized while the Alphas have gathered the world’s sparse resources for themselves. Though proclaiming their superiority, for all their effort Alphas cannot escape one harsh fact: Whenever one twin dies, so does the other. Cass is a rare Omega, one burdened with psychic foresight. While her twin, Zach, gains power on the Alpha Council, she dares to dream the most dangerous dream of all: equality. For daring to envision a world in which Alphas and Omegas live side by side as equals, both the Council and the Resistance have her in their sights.

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‘Sci-Fi’ Teaser Tuesdays: December 01

Sci Fi Teaser TuesdaysWelcome to Teaser Tuesdays – a weekly feature hosted by A Daily Rhythm. From the beginning of December to the end of January, Books by Proxy will be taking part in The 2016 Sci-Fi Experience, hosted by Stainless Steel Droppings. Expect a new teaser every week!

| Teaser Tuesdays: December 01 |

Rising Tide

by Rajan Khanna

Science Fiction | 268 Pages | Published by Pyr in 2015

“As those three images resolve into one, I see a soldier, a man in a Navy uniform, moving toward us, a rifle in hand. He fires and I see the muzzle flash, hear the retort of the gun even through my ringing ears.”

~ p. 100, Rising Tide by Rajan Khanna

| Synopsis |

Ben Gold sacrificed his ship in an effort to prevent pirates from attacking the hidden city of Tamoanchan. Now Malik, an old friend turned enemy, has captured Ben and Miranda—the scientist Ben loves. With Miranda held hostage, Ben has to do Malik’s dirty work.

Miranda has plans of her own, though. She has developed a test for the virus that turned most of the population into little more than beasts called Ferals two generations ago. She needs Ben’s help to rescue a group of her colleagues to perfect the test—but first they must rescue themselves.

When a terrible new disease starts spreading across Tamoanchan and people start dying, it seems there’s something more sinister afoot. Then an old enemy attacks. Can Ben fight off the invaders? And will it be in time to save anyone from the disease?

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| Join In |

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Please leave a comment with either the link to your own Teaser Tuesdays post, or share your ‘teasers’ in a comment here!

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Review: Red Rising by Pierce Brown

Red Rising

Book One of the Red Rising Trilogy

by Pierce Brown

Young Adult | Science Fiction | 382 Pages | Published by Hodder & Stoughton in 2014

| Rating |

Over the past few years I’ve managed to unintentionally avoid most of the popular young adult dystopian releases – something about hyped novels clearly deflects my attention. That was until Red Rising turned up as the September book of the month for Dragons and Jetpacks. Having, despite the hype, heard very little about it, I cracked Red Rising open with very few expectations and… wow! This novel seriously blew me away. In a debut novel full of repression and vengeance, Pierce Brown manages to surpass all expectations (if I had any at all!). Red Rising is beautifully written, imaginatively crafted and heart thumpingly brilliant.

The Earth is dying. Darrow is a Red, a miner in the interior of Mars. His mission is to extract enough precious elements to one day tame the surface of the planet and allow humans to live on it. The Reds are humanity’s last hope.

Or so it appears, until the day Darrow discovers it’s all a lie. That Mars has been habitable – and inhabited – for generations, by a class of people calling themselves the Golds. A class of people who look down on Darrow and his fellows as slave labour, to be exploited and worked to death without a second thought.

Until the day that Darrow, with the help of a mysterious group of rebels, disguises himself as a Gold and infiltrates their command school, intent on taking down his oppressors from the inside. But the command school is a battlefield – and Darrow isn’t the only student with an agenda.

Red Rising is a tale of division and repression. The Golds are the conquerors, the glorious leaders who have elected themselves the superior race of humanity. Those who lie elsewhere on the colour spectrum find themselves confined to their caste, unable to climb socially or politically and treated as subhuman by those above. The Reds have it worst of all. Toiling deep underground, they labour under the pretext that they’re making Mars habitable for humanity, a lie perpetuated by the Golds to ensure their continued servitude.

But Darrow and the Sons of Ares plan to bring down the system from within and will do almost anything to free their people. Brown has created a dark and unforgiving field on which to play his characters. This is a harsh land full of harsh people, where only the strongest survive and the most determined rise to power. Those in the way are disposed of dispassionately, both Reds and Golds alike.

This is a novel written with skill and excitement to create a fast paced and thrilling plot; Darrow’s rage and pain filtering throughout the narrative. And though the pages seemingly fly by, this isn’t a novel to rush; the detail Brown puts into his worldbuilding is well worth the time and attention. The characters may carry the novel  and drive the plot but this dangerous and alien planet is described with vibrancy and unobtrusive detail. Pierce Brown can almost do no wrong. Almost. Just one (repeated) phrase – ‘picking his butt’. No.

Darrow is a brilliant protagonist, full of fire and passion, anger and vengeance, sorrow and guilt. It’s incredibly easy to get swept along with his narrative, to empathise with his plight and feel his burning anger towards the Golds. The complete somersault of Darrow’s universe, the necessity for him to change and become someone, or something, else are all etched out in beautiful prose as his character grows and develops. All Brown’s characters feel real and, through friendships and allegiances, brutal tests and grim reality, Darrow’s preconceptions are repeatedly tested to create a complex and exciting novel which bristles with tension and leaves you wondering just where it all might lead.

This is one novel which certainly lives up to its hype; if you’re a fan of dystopian science fiction then Red Rising is sure to impress, and though the opening chapters are deceptively reminiscent of other well loved (and obscenely popular) novels, persevere! – This book stands in a league of its own. Goodbye Red Rising, hello Golden Son!

Bookish Beats Suggestion

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