3 out of 4 stars
Share This Review
The year is 2129 and America has dissolved into a dystopian society divided into two factions. The Unity is in control of several major cities, providing employment, tracking devices and forced retirement at age 40, while the rest of America is known for its turmoil, killer plants, slavers and Ageplay, a technology used to extend human lifespan. In Exiles’ Escape, Book Two in W. Clark Boutwell’s Old Men and Infidels fantasy series, the story follows Will, Hecate and Malila, as they are brought together trying to escape the oppression of the Unity.
Malila, after her return to the Unity from the outlands of America, is hounded by memories of Jesse, the old man who helped her survive and opened her eyes to a different way of life. Will she ever see him again to apologise for her actions? Jesse is trying to track Malila but finds himself in the middle of an assassination plot. Malila, along with her friend, Hecate, attempt to escape the Unity’s stronghold, running into Will along the way. While Will seems friendly, he’s in Unity under false pretences and has orders to kill Malila. Will he be able to bring himself to carry them out, and will Jesse be able to get to Malila before it’s too late?
Written in third person, the story changes between the different characters, giving detailed overviews from every perspective. The characters each have their own strong personalities, which become apparent in how they face obstacles in their way. While determined to escape, Hecate and Malila show their strength in overcoming the doctrines they’ve been brainwashed with since birth. Will comes across as a likeable character who appears genuinely good hearted. The reader is able to see that while his previous training has tried to ultimately get him to kill, he still hasn’t lost his own sense of right and wrong.
The concepts looked at here were intriguing and not too unrealistic for a futuristic world. With all political upheavals, there is always potential for people to take power for themselves at the cost of others. It also looked at human nature and how, when there are restrictions on food or necessities, people are forced to show their true colours, and trust becomes an unknown concept.
As the second book in the series, there were parts of the story which were difficult to understand, as well as multiple references to Book One. This is not really a stand-alone book and I would highly recommend reading this series in order. There is a summary of Book One in the Appendix, outlining the background of the story which is helpful, however, I only found this after finishing the book.
Unfortunately, in the first half of the book there are multiple punctuation errors which would be picked up with another run through with the editor. There is also a lot going on in this book, and it took me awhile to get immersed in the story. While jumping between the characters is helpful to get to know each one, it can make it confusing for the reader.
This book had a lot of interesting concepts of how a dystopian society would work in a futuristic America, which I enjoyed. However, due to the editorial errors I rate this book 3 out of 4 stars. This is for readers who like books which look at futuristic societies and the problems they face, such as Hunger Games, Divergent and The Maze Runner, although I would recommend starting with Book One.
View: on Bookshelves
Like micoleon13's review? Post a comment saying so!