Tuesday, March 5, 2013

The Vanished by Sarah Dalton

Title:  The Vanished
Author:  Sarah Dalton
Series:  Blemished #2
Published:  January 30th 2013
Page Count:  294
Genre:  Young Adult Dystopian
Shelf:  Review Copy
Rating:  ★★★★

Synopsis from Goodreads:

“The Compound bustled with action and anticipation, causing my stomach to do a flip. I stopped in my tracks, realising something, something I hadn't thought of before. We were going to war, and people were going to die.”

The Vanished are the forgotten: those who live beyond law or society. Mina fought for freedom. She fought for a better life – a future. But even a free world can decay.

As Mina begins her new life in the Clans she meets people with surprising knowledge about her power, knowledge that could change everything – even her relationship with Daniel. But as she makes new friends, old friends turn against her in shocking betrayal.

Life in the Compound is tough; there are ways and traditions so strange that Mina begins to suspect foul play at the very heart of her new home. Instead of leaving corruption behind in Area 14, Mina is faced with the rotten core of human nature as a Clan warlord threatens to invade the Compound. The Clans are turning against each other and Mina is stuck in the middle.

The Vanished is the second instalment in the Blemished series and follows Mina’s story as she continues to challenge those in power and seek out new dangers. With even more rebellion, romance and betrayal, The Vanished promises to take the reader on a roller-coaster ride of adventure and emotion.

Will freedom fall?

My Review:

It’s always great when a sequel picks up right where the last instalment in a series left off. The reader isn’t left wondering or guessing what happened in the interim period. That is exactly what Dalton did with this novel. It was made all the better and much trickier by the fact that the first instalment in the series wasn’t a cliff-hanger. That said, once into this novel, it was completely different (yet somehow still the same) as its predecessor.

This novel was just as intense as the first in the series, but in a completely different way. Although genetic manipulation and mutation still plays a major role in the story, there is a great deal more fighting in this novel. The story at the core remains the same but Dalton runs with it. With this twist, she avoids the staleness that can occur in a series that never changes, evolves, or in this case, mutates. The story remains extremely well written. Dalton employs many different techniques while describing the world that her characters find themselves in. Through the symbolism found in colour and scent she very subtly, yet effectively, differentiates between individuals and locales.

Character development continues in this novel in a very efficient manner. Characters learn a great deal about themselves through their interactions with others and through situations that they find themselves immersed in. Being caught up in peer pressure causes them to fight for who they are. They also grow up quite quickly due to the lack of parental units but yet remain true to themselves. I thoroughly enjoyed that most of the characters held to their beliefs and didn't do things that made them uncomfortable. It was very nice to see them being the same individuals at the end of the novel as they were at the beginning, regardless of what they went through or how hard they had to fight to get back to themselves.

If the uniqueness of this novel doesn't grab you then the characters will draw you into their world. Dalton has an amazing way with words that connects your imagination to hers. You can’t help but love the characters and want to help them through the unimaginable yet very possible world that they live in.

Buy your copy online here today!

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