Series or Stand Alone: Endure series, book one
Release Date: July 2013
Publisher: Etopia Press
Release Date: July 2013
Publisher: Etopia Press
Pages: 336 (ebook)
My Rating: 3/5
Cover: Thumbs Up – I like the color usage and it goes well with the story. I do wish the cover was more focused on the male since Justin is the main character.
Seventeen-year-old Justin's anemic blood is a blessing. Or a curse. It all depends on who you ask.
To most of the immortal Vie, his blood is a scourge: untouchable and useless. To some Vie, his blood is a drug. To Justin, it’s something that gets him in a lot of trouble. Being poisoned by a Vie is just one example. His sister getting kidnapped is another. Whether it’s being coerced by a deluded cult leader, or negotiating with Alex—n Vie scientist addicted to Anemie blood—Justin struggles to keep every mutated drop of blood he’s got.
His fight for survival gets more complicated when he meets Alex’s slave, Cara. Despite coming from different worlds, they’re both prisoners, at risk of being drained by a hungry Vie any moment. When she risks her own neck to help Justin find his sister, he's left with a terrifying choice.
Saving what's left of humanity.
Saving his sister.
Saving the girl he loves.
Or sticking a stake in Alex’s chest.
Justin can't decide which option will get him killed first.
I think Endure is a really promising start to a series that will stand out in the Young Adult crowd. The beginning starts out with an introduction to Justin and his younger sister Sammie. Like other Anemies, the siblings spend their days on the run and their nights in hiding, trying to survive and not get taken during Vie raids. Already in a weakened state due to his illness, Justin does his best to keep the two of them alive on food and water pellets distributed to all Anemies. When Sammie gets kidnapped during a raid, Justin not only loses his baby sister but finds out some shocking information that turns his already fragile world upside down.
My main issue with Endure is that I never really got a good grasp on the world of the Vie. Similar to vampires, I gathered that Vie were once normal humans who were granted immortality through science (and money/power). Now, regular humans are Vie slaves and humans who suffer from anemia are no longer even considered humans. I think I would have liked a history lesson or something thrown into the book that helped me better understand the kind of world Justin lives in. I felt a little cheated because I would get small threads of information concerning the past or about current events in the book and then they would be gone. The characters were pretty well-rounded but I think some more detail and explanation would have gone a long way even if it added more pages to the book’s length.
Another very minor (and personal) issue I had was the language use…I myself use explicit language. I’m no potty mouth but I honestly could care less about the usage of curse words. (As long as it isn’t used as every other word and unnecessary) If I recall correctly I think maybe one or two true curse words can be found in Endure. What’s the problem then?? Clots and sludge brain... I should have counted how many times I read those words - *shudders* I get that they were substitutes for curse words but it just turned me off every single time.
I did enjoy the budding romance between Justin and Cara, a Vie slave. The romantic story arc was a good addition that did not complicate or take away from the main conflicts of the story. I also appreciated and really enjoyed the fact there was no sugar coating of the violence within the story. I won’t ruin any parts but be prepared for the honest and brutal way of life that Justin is living in. I feel really weird admitting how pleasantly surprised I was to find the author wasn’t shy in killing off characters. I guess I didn’t know how much I liked violence *shrugs*
Even though I haven’t had the chance to get a lot of YA dystopian novels under my reading belt I still like the unique premise of Endure and what it has to offer. While there will be a second book (Evoke), I’m glad Endure did not end on a major cliffhanger. Justin’s story is far from over and I like the fact that I don’t feel the need to tear my hair out waiting for the next book, I can be a good girl and wait patiently :)
Did I ever introduce Mishel? Well if not then here is a few words from her :)
Reading hasn't always been my passion. I remember some Anne Rice, a few Amelia Atwater-Rhodes, some Dean Koontz, a couple of John Saul's, a Stephen King at some point. I dabbled a little here and there...had a quickie a time or two...but I really fell in love when I picked up Dark Guardian by Christine Feehan sometime in 2007. Can't tell you how or why my switch was flipped, but I sure haven't looked back since then. I admit I'm a bit (ooookay a lot a bit) of a cover-whore and I may or may not have a book-collecting problem...like "gotta have em' all" problem =) ... I'm a sucker for anything cute and cuddly. I like super heroes, cartoons, tv shows I can never keep up with and collecting random things. I enjoy all things romantic, paranormal, and fantasy. But I like when some YA, historical, sci-fi, contemporary and horror/thriller gets sprinkled into the mix as well...basically if it tickles my fancy - I'll give it a go!