Monday, May 26, 2014

Summer Reading 2014 Divided

I've heard the Dualed series for Young Adults described as a cross between Divergent and Hunger Games. I can see why that comparison is made. Citizens of Kersh live inside a walled safe zone and the Surround outside its walls is full of danger and chaos (Divergent). The circumstances that led to the need for a safe zone have also left humans sterile, so that their children are produced in labs (Aeon Flux, anyone?). Each person also has an ALT, an alternate of themselves with the same DNA that belongs to a different family. To insure that only the fittest and toughest are using up the city's resources, the ALTs are activated and one must kill the other and the survivor becomes a Complete citizen with the right to a complete life (Hunger Games). Until they are activated, the ALTs are Idles waiting and training for that day to come.

West Grayer, the female protagonist, has reached Complete status and is working as an assistant weapons instructor. She has her boyfriend, Chord, and her younger friend Dess, who is more like a little brother. She has school and her appointments with her therapist to try and work through the lingering nightmares from when she was Active and hunting/being hunted by her ALT. So it seems like everything should be smoothing out and leading to happily ever after. Then an Operator from the ruling Board approaches her with an offer that is hard to refuse - do a task for the Board and her own future children will never have to face an ALT, they will be Completes without all the danger. While she struggles with what to do, she has to think of her own safety, that of her friends, and even what's best for Kersh itself.

The action is gripping, the moral dilemma is thought-provoking, and I've become very interested in the characters. I need to go back and read the first book so that I can learn about the people and events that are mentioned in this second installment. I'm not divided on that at all.

I read an e-book provided by the publisher through NetGalley. The book will be released in stores on May 27, 2014.

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