Evelyn's life is just about perfect. Every morning she wakes at the same time. She has breakfast. she meets with her Therapist, and then she's free to visit her garden. She is respected and well cared for. She is, after all, a Daughter of the People. Handpicked by Mother herself to follow in her footsteps and one day lead Elysium, their underwater haven. They have everything they need here: food, resources, entertainment, jobs, and they're safe from the wicked surface dwellers above. But one day a surface dweller finds his way into Elysium. Evelyn is fascinated by him and wants to help him in spite of everything she's always been taught. No one in Elysium is ever allowed to question Mother. But soon Evelyn begins to do just that. And once she starts to doubt Mother's teachings and rules, Evelyn finds herself in big trouble.
J.A. Souders's debut is crazy! Crazy good and crazy, crazy!
I love the world! An underwater utopia -- anyone familiar with BioShock has to automatically love this idea. In fact, the pitch I read on Renegade called it part Bourne and part BioShock. I'm all for that!
(As an aside I've often wondered why there aren't more underwater worlds. It seems pretty logical to me that there should be!)
It's not clear at the outset exactly what's going on with Evelyn, but by the end of the first chapter you know Elysium and Mother are pretty freaking warped! Souders wastes no time getting straight to the action while provided a great balance of set up for the reader in explaining the world.
The book only becomes more twisted and bloody from that point forward. Mother is bad. Really, really bad. You know she's bad but Souders still manages to shock and disturb the reader with just how bad this character gets.
And then there's Evelyn. Sweet and flighty Evelyn who really isn't flighty at all. I won't give away her story, you have to read Renegade yourself to learn that. Needless to say I kind of loved this book. There were definitely a few moments when I had to roll my eyes and admit maybe the book went a little too far in one direction, but I quickly popped back into the story and forgave those instances. It was too much fun not to!
Renegade officially hits shelves on Tuesday, November 13. I highly recommend adding this one to your "Absolutely Must Have" list as soon as you can!
Check back here next Thursday, November 15, for a Q&A with the author!