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.
Wow. I didn't know quite what to expect when I decided to participate in the tour, but this wasn't it. In a good way.
One thing that's immediately notable, is the darkness. This novel is potentially the darkest I've ever read. but it had a light at the end of the tunnel and it had it's tissue moments.The book was wonderfully written, with great, varied cast of characters whom brilliantly brought the focus of the novel up to the front.
The focus of course, is emotion. (Which I wasn't expecting when I picked it up.)
and boy, is it wrought with emotion.
mostly low emotions, and whew! some spicy ones involving Cole, her guard and love interest. I adored some of the fuzzier moments. here's an teaser from one of my favorite fuzzies:
Heavy clouds, pregnant with water, drip, drip, drip down the windowsill. Zeus lies on the floor. I guess he was too hot on the bed overnight. Cole wraps around me, his warm breath caressing the back of my neck each time he exhales. We're so close, but at the same time, not close enough. While he's pressed against me, I trace the outline of his arm with my fingertips. His skin feels like silk, but it's firm at the same time. A sigh escapes his lips. I wiggle around some, and eventually he stirs, releasing his grip. He grumbles something like an apology and rolls over. Dang. I shake him. "Hey, I hate to have to wake you, but you better get your butt in gear or you'll be late for roll call." I take the opportunity to touch his hair and rub my fingers down his faded haircut. He moans. "I'll never get up if you keep doing that." Oops.
Cole is somewhat of a wild card. He enters, and leaves the stage with all the other characters at the end of the novel, without ever revealing exactly who he is and why he's been ordered to protect Lexi. I might have some guesses for that last question, but I'm not willing to believe until I see for sure.
I loved Lexi's unwavering determination to survive (something which she lacked at the very moment we met her.) and I LOVED ZEUS. He's an adorable, gawky dog, who steals the spotlight on a few occasions. He certainly stole my heart!
My only hangups for this novel:
1) It was so so so dark. I have depression issues, so I had to put it down a few times to recoup myself. Although the novel ended on a good note, a LOT of bad things happen to Lexi throughout the novel.
2) Cole, freakin Cole. Why was he so cruel in the beginning? How did Lexi come to terms with those past behaviors? I suppose it was just in case the Commander was watching, but his unexplained back story leaves a little to be desired. (perhaps a novella some where could help with this.) His transition from cruel guard to loving rebel was a bit blurry or rocky. What made him make those decisions when he did?
anyway, the good absolutely outweighs the bad I think. One of the best moments written in this book, is Lexi's relationship with Alyssa. I can't give you any other deets on that, because it would be too spoilery. But ultimately, even with the sadness and depression themes, I give it four stars.
Have you ever read a really depressing book, that totally made you bow down and respect it anyway? (or love it anyway?) (it's okay to respond with TFIOS, I understand *pats your back* mightier beings than you have been struck down with that one.)
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About the authors:
Is a registered nurse with a passion for novels, the beaches of St. John, and her Philadelphia Phillies. A talented singer, Abi loves to go running and spend lots of time with her family. She currently resides in Lancaster, Pennsylvania with her husband, triplet daughters and two very spoiled dogs.