Freedom is a lie.
It’s been four years since Tori escaped the desert planet of Esandira and her life as a drug-mule and assassin for a dictator named Craik, but she is as enslaved as she ever was. While she is physically free, inside her mind, the past blurs with the present, and she’s desperate for a cure from the faces that only she can see, and the voices that only she can hear.
On the run from an assassin and a bounty hunter, she crosses paths with Spencer, a seventeen-year-old who isn’t sure where he’s going. Spencer doesn’t want anything to do with her, and while she shares the sentiment, their lives are twisted together by the death of a mutual loved one.
With her enemies drawing closer, Tori is getting tired of running. And she sees only one way out. Craik must die. It’s a dangerous cat and mouse game, but the closer she gets to Craik the more her dark secrets begin to surface and the more she begins to question the path she has chosen.
*I have received this book from LibraryThing’s ER program via the publisher in exchange for an honest review.*
What really grabbed my attention about this book was the blurb. Once I spotted the word ‘assassin’, I knew I was going to have to read this book. Seriously, I’m a sucker for books with assassins. To say the least, the book did fail to meet some of my hopes and expectations. I have a lot of mixed feelings about this book. To me, this was an average book. I felt like it had a lot of potential and could’ve been better. I disliked the main female character at first, but she really did grow on me. I do seem drawn to books with strong, arrogant female characters. Anyway, let’s just get into the dissecting!
This book was very hard getting into at the beginning because I felt like I couldn’t really connect or empathize with the main character. I wasn’t able to feel sad for Vỉcŧor because I didn’t get to know him as well as Tõri did. Sure, the author includes some flashbacks here and there, but it feels like the book just picked up in the middle of a series or something. I found myself looking up the book just to make sure I didn’t just accidentally start reading a new series. When I started the book, I had absolutely no idea what was going on. I thought to myself: ‘Oh well, everything’s going to be explained in a few more chapters anyway.’ I was wrong. I was already more than halfway through the book and I still couldn’t understand some things. I guess you could say that this is an example of weak story building.
This is especially sad because I felt like this book could’ve become something more; the book’s plot had really great potential, which brings us to our next point – the plot. Even though I’ve finished reading the whole book and everything, I still do not know what the main idea/plot of this book is. The book blurb seems to say something which the book itself doesn’t have anything to do with. Who knows? Maybe it’s just me and I just assumed the wrong things. Sometimes, I’d feel like the plot was actually going somewhere but then something would happen and I’ll still be as confused as ever. This story has a pretty unstable plot. In the first part of the book, Tõri was the Strÿker and she was stealing money and stuff. In the second part of the book, Tõri is concentrated on protecting a chip. In the third part of the book, Tõri wants to get the prototype and kill Craik. Plus, not everything was explained clearly – I don’t know if the authors did this on purpose or not.
Holy Seøøoth. I think my favourite part about this book was the swear words. Xѐraiṫh, Çetiçs, Permisterathis, Seøøoth, Resett, Einaďgræ. They’re pretty creative, but the accentuations are hella weird. Frankly, all the names in this book were weird! How do you pronounce ¥sh? Is it ‘Ash’? And why was there a need to spell Tõri with the ‘õ’, may I ask? I’m not hating or complaining about the names but they were pretty damn confusing. Especially the planetary and galactic names. Seriously, don’t even get me started on these. S`Erria, Shër`rathës, OceaN°iarra, Ra`eat Island, Niғva… I could go on & on & on. However, the glossary at the end of the book was pretty helpful in terms of pronunciations and meanings. Too bad I didn’t realize there was a glossary until after I finished the book.
My favourite thing about this book were the characters. I just adored Tõri’s arrogance and strong personality. You do get to see a soft side of her once every blue moon. Spençer is such a sweetheart and I love his and Tori’s relationship. Admittedly, I did think that Tõri and Spençer was going to happen – in a romantic way – but then ¥sh happened. I had mixed feelings about the bounty hunter in the beginning of the book, but I’ve decided that I like him, although I did feel like his and Tõri’s relationship was kind of spontaneous. I can’t really say anything about Vỉcŧor because I didn’t experience any character attachment to him. I guess he was kind of Tõri’s father figure? Oh, and speaking of fathers, throughout the story I’ve been wondering the following question: Where are Tõri’s parents? I really wanted to know the answer to that…
To conclude, this book has caused a lot of mixed opinions; it really all depends on you. There was weak story building and a shaky plot that tended to meander off point. This book had a kind of vagueness about it – you can decide if you like that or not. It also had a terse writing style which, again, all hinges on you. There were a few loose ends and unanswered questions that weren’t all properly tied together. I’d recommend this book to you if you’re willing to take the risk of picking up the book and deciding whether you’ll like it or not. Signing off. ‘Till next time!