June Review: An unexpected good read!
Author: Laura Frances
Publisher: Laura Frances
RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐ 1/2
I’m a sucker for books, especially when they’re free. So, when author Laura Frances threw the first book in The Slave Series out on Amazon for free, I jumped at the chance. I’d never heard of the book before, but as another dystopian author, I had to check it out.
I was not disappointed. You won’t be either.
“Follow the rules. Don’t give them a reason to notice you.”
The valley is all that Hannah has ever known. She follows the rules for workers, so she’ll blend in. Every day is a life lived to further the machine overseen by the faceless Council. Making certain the workers do their bidding are the feared Watchers, guards who can take everything away at a moment’s notice. After all, they took everything from Hannah once. This is her life, until one night, explosions and conflict change her world forever. Hannah is launched into the conflict with a choice: wait it out, hoping the Council won’t show up to take her back, or join the fight. One thing is for certain, Hannah’s world will never be the same.
Hannah is a 19-year old worker, who had known little outside her life as a worker. Losing her parents at a young age, she has lived her life trying to blend into society so the Watchers never take notice of her. When her routine is ripped away, doubts plague every friend she makes. Whereas she once focused on looking down, she wills herself to look at others and learns to once again interact with other human beings. The conflict between relative safety and making a difference rages within her.
Edan, Hannah’s friend and savior, is a passionate member of the forces that liberate Hannah. He longs to see change come to the valley, but he is torn by the family he’s left behind. He has paid a cost to do what is right.
Cash, a former Watcher, is haunted by the choices of his past, giving him a look that initially frightens Hannah. However, the more she comes to know Cash’s story, the more she realizes there is more to this man than the uniform he once wore.
Slave has to be one of the most fast-paced novels I have ever read. Just when I thought I would get a moment to breathe, Hannah’s world is again flipped upside-down. This kind of writing will bother some who love to dive deeply into the relationships, but this reader loved it. I flew through this book, reading it in record time because I could not put it down.
The world is built through the eyes of Hannah, and the reader spends a lot of time in her thoughts. First person, present tense writing is not for everyone, but Frances does an excellent job keeping this style of writing from becoming jarring. Hannah’s thoughts flow freely, and the reader will find themselves agreeing with her assessment of the characters around her.
At times, I did find myself wishing for a little more detail as to the world around Hannah. My mind was able to fill in the descriptive gaps, but I would have loved to hear more of what Frances saw in her mind as she wrote.
If you are a fan of fast-paced, dystopian story, this book is for you! There are characters for both men and women to relate to. The story is clean without language or sex. Romance is present, but it is clean. Violence is part of this world, but gore is left out. Faith is not really a present issue in the story.
I would recommend this book to any speculative fiction reader, especially fans of recent dystopian bestsellers. Dystopian has taken a break on the market, and I think the readership is ready for more. Want to warm up before you read Suzanne Collins' prequel to the Hunger Games? Then check out Slave by Laura Frances. You can order a copy of the entire series for your e-reader for just a few dollars!
Available on Amazon.
No disclaimer. I did not receive anything from the author, nor was I requested to write this review.