Waiting on Wednesday

waiting on wednesday

Every week Breaking the Spine hosts the bookish meme for book bloggers to share what books they are waiting on to be released!  This week I’m waiting on:

Release Date: May 16, 2017

When Daryn claimed she was seeing visions during her sophomore year of high school, no one believed the truth. She wasn t losing her mind, she was gaining the Sight the ability to see the future. If she just paid attention to the visions, they d provide her with clues and show her how she could help people. Really help them. Daryn embraced her role as a Seeker. The work she did was important. She saved lives.

Until Sebastian.

Sebastian was her first and worst mistake.

Since the moment she inadvertently sealed him in a dark dimension with Samrael the last surviving demon in the Kindred guilt has plagued her. Daryn knows Sebastian is alive and waiting for help. It s up to her to rescue him. But now that she needs the Sight more than ever to guide her, the visions have stopped.

Daryn must rely on her instincts, her intelligence, and on blind faith to lead the riders who are counting on her in search of Sebastian. As they delve into a shadowy realm where nothing is as it seems and where Samrael is steadily amassing power, Daryn faces the ultimate test. Will she have to become evil to destroy evil? The very fate of humankind rests in the answer.

Book Review: Riders by Veronica Rossi

Nothing but death can keep eighteen-year-old Gideon Blake from achieving his goal of becoming a U.S. Army Ranger. As it turns out, it does.

While recovering from the accident that most definitely killed him, Gideon finds himself with strange new powers and a bizarre cuff he can’t remove. His death has brought to life his real destiny. He has become War, one of the legendary four horsemen of the apocalypse.

Over the coming weeks, he and the other horsemen—Conquest, Famine, and Death—are brought together by a beautiful but frustratingly secretive girl to help save humanity from an ancient evil on the emergence.

They fail.

Now—bound, bloodied, and drugged—Gideon is interrogated by the authorities about his role in a battle that has become an international incident. If he stands any chance of saving his friends and the girl he’s fallen for—not to mention all of humankind—he needs to convince the skeptical government officials the world is in imminent danger.

But will anyone believe him?

*Movie announcer voice* In a world where apocalyptic young adult literature is a dime a dozen, comes a new story from Veronica Rossi, author of that other apocalyptic/dystopian series (Under the Never Sky), featuring teen incarnations of the four horsemen of the apocalypse and their mission.

Okay, so there are some really cool things about this novel.  Number one being that Rossi has tapped into something I know very little about, unless you count the episodes of Supernatural that feature the four horsemen.  Two is that I have never read a novel about the personification of the four horsemen of the apocalypse.  The third thing that was pretty cool was the inclusion of characters that weren’t white. Two of these horsemen embodiments were African American and Hispanic, respectively.  So in a lot of ways, Rossi has created something wholly original and equally interesting.

There’s a pretty simple narrative device in play the whole novel: main narrator is relaying the story to an outside entity who is demanding answers.  So pretty much the majority of the novel is in past tense, and the action is being told to us rather than shown to us.  In some scenes this can be a bit dull and it takes away from the high stakes nature of the story.  However, it still works for the most part.

 

 

The Narrator is the embodiment of War, which I take to be the main explanation for why Gideon seems to be having a veritable pissing contest throughout the novel with the rest of the horsemen characters.  There’s so much testosterone at play and the fact that they are pretty much boasting about their abilities, their weapons, and their horses that I wanted all of them to be taken down a peg or two. Each of the horsemen seem somewhat – kind of – realized as characters but mostly in ways that they fit their horseman role more than who they really are, save for Marcus (who doesn’t really expose much of his past), but I don’t want to give away too much plot by going into detail.

I was extremely disappointed by the distinct lack of female characters in this novel.  There is really only one main female character, Daryn, who is pretty awesome and puts the male characters in their place a handful of times.  She is the one who is portrayed as being in control of the outcome, but even then her agency is hardly on display.  She, much like Marcus, reveals very little about herself, so the reader basically only gets a face value background on her. The other female characters were either plot devices (see Cordero) or background characters in Gideon’s life (his sister and his mother).

Side Note: I actually have never heard of the fourth horseman being Conquest.  In most popular incarnations the fourth horseman is Pestilence.  I actually had to google the origin of Conquest versus Pestilence in the four horseman.  Seems that Conquest was actually described more fully in the book of Revelation. Who knew?

Overall, I found the novel to be well paced, well researched, and well written.  There were some things I wish were there, sure, but I think that this series has potential.

3.5 Bards.

3.5bards

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