After the devastating loss of the Sanctuary—and of her love, Taylor Nolan—Gemma Alcott settles in Winter’s Dam and takes up Letty Webb’s mantle, receiving weary subversives at the bookstore and offering them safety. The role gives her a purpose and a reason to get up every morning, but no matter how many people she saves, she can never bring back the people she’s lost.
Or can she?
When unknown assailants raid the bookstore in the middle of the night, capturing Gemma and her friends, she expects to be dragged to a detention center. But the kidnappers aren’t with the Task Force. They are former soldiers and police officers, and they’re part of a growing rebellion. Six months earlier, when Gemma hijacked the renouncements and made her bold declaration to the world, she planted the seeds of a revolution. And this rebel group has one mission:
To liberate the detention centers.
But when Elevation Ministry Center is bombed and megachurch Pastor David Ogden is shot, Gemma becomes the prime suspect in the attack. With the Task Force closing in on her, and powerful forces behind the scenes working to destroy the rebellion in its infancy, Gemma must decide how much she’s willing to sacrifice for freedom.
Because all freedom comes at a cost.
I received an ARC of this book from the author. All thoughts and opinions are entirely my own, and I am writing a voluntary review.
AnnaScott’s Review of Book 1: Subversive
AnnaScott’s Review of Book 2: Sanctuary
Ok, the first book in this series was really good. The second was even better. This one, though, easily surpassed both of them.
Let’s just start with the genre. I feel like I say this every time I read a dystopian book, but my favorite part about this genre is the subtle commentary we get about our culture. And boy, did this one hit close to home (for context, this book is set is an alternate universe where America is controlled by a totalitarian government who hates Christians, so same culture but with a corrupt government). All of the references to propaganda and history and misinformation were just so much more significant because of the last year and a half.
One thing that I have loved about this entire series is that I never know how each book is going to end. With this one in particular, I noticed that parts of the narrative were similar to the Divergent and The Hunger Games series, and I got nervous for a while that it would end in similar ways. As usual, though, the ending was a complete surprise, and one that was quite satisfactory.
The single, solitary complaint that I have (which isn’t really a complaint but more of a comment?) is that I wish the ending had been a little more definitive about what would happen next. I totally get why Raena ended it the way she did, and I can’t come up with a ‘better’ alternative, I just wish I knew with a little more certainty that these characters that I’ve been falling in love with for three books would get an official happily ever after.
Overall, this book was so captivating that I read it in two days, which was so hard because it’s the end of the trilogy and I hated to finish it. I would highly recommend this book for anyone who likes Christian dystopian – I absolutely love Gemma and Taylor and all of their friends, and Raena did an amazing job combining entertainment with some powerful messages.