4.5 out of 5 stars!
Wow! Afterimage was a top notch dystopian novel! It has everything you could possibly want, a hostile war ravaged Earth check, a tyrannical pop up government that rules with an iron fist check, groups of survivors hell bent on resisting the government’s shackles check, compelling and engaging multidimensional characters on both sides of the fence check, and freaking super abilities check, check! I was quite honestly blown away with this story!
Afterimage, how I love thee, let me count the ways…
The Plot. It was original, imaginative, and smart. Just an all around well thought out plot line that isn’t all that far fetched. In a time of need, after another World War has taken it’s toll on the world, with no real leaders left, The Public was born. The Public wishes to create the perfect society. Think of it as Pleasantville meets The Community (The Giver) but way more cunningly destructive and damaging. The lengths The Public goes to for this idea of a perfect society are horrifying. Perfection comes at a cost and the innocent are paying the price, most without even truly knowing what is really happening. Things start getting even more intense once The Public’s biggest asset is ripped away from their clutches by a group of rebels. Little did these rebels know they would be starting a war. It was non-stop, pulse-pounding goodness! It was not your typical YA dystopian, the characters were older and this tale was much grittier. And that made me love it even more!
The Characters. Imperfect perfection. Each one was well written, with many layers that I believe we have only just scratched the surface of. There were many point of views in this story and I can’t say that there was even one that I did not enjoy. A big tip of the hat to J. Kowallis for absolutely nailing the POV changes. It was done beautifully, and what’s better is that none of them felt unnecessary. Each one gave you better insight to the character, their role, and motivations. I’m also impressed with the writing of the “villains”. While I loathed Dr. Dryer and Lobb they were still quite fascinating! The way they took this idea of pureness and harmony and manipulated it until it was this hulking beast of hurt, damage, and insidiousness had me enthralled. I was horrified but I couldn’t look away. I was wondering where this all started? Was it one defining moment, one tough call where they decided “the end justified the means” that started them on this slippery slope and ultimately turned them into the monsters they are today? So basically, the good, the bad, and the truly ugly, it was all present here in these various characters and I admired each one of them in different ways.
I could go on and on, but I don’t want to give anything away. This was a real page turner from start to finish and I can’t wait to continue on with Encender next! I highly recommend this to Dystopian fans, because in my opinion, this is that at it’s very best!
I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.