Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Defiant by Mari Li, Jen Minkman, Lis Lucassen

by Mara Li, Jen Minkman, Lis Lucassen

My rating: 5 stars

Publication Date: March 26, 2015
Publisher: Storm Publishers
ISBN-13: 9781625178152
Genre: YA Dystopian Anthology
Print Length: 223 pages
Available from: Amazon | Barnes & Noble


What can you do when the society you live in isn’t as good and grand as people want you to believe? For Emma, Leia, and Justa, there is only one way to survive – by being defiant.

Three young adult authors from the Netherlands use their storytelling talents to explore worlds where nothing is as it seems and no one is truly safe.

The Red Messenger 

Some things are better left unsaid – or unquestioned.

When Emma finds a mysterious note in a coat that once belonged to her twin sister Sophia, the words written on it won’t leave her alone: “The Angel has come”. Angels are a part of forbidden folklore, remnants of the old Jewish religion that was banned by the Realm long ago. Sophia had secrets she never shared with Emma, and they demand to be unraveled. Now, Emma’s quest will change her world forever.

The Island 

Leia lives on the Island, where children leave their parents to take care of themselves when they are only ten years old. Across this Island runs a wall that no one has ever crossed. No one wants to – because the Fools living in the west, behind the wall, are deluded and believe in illusions. That’s what The Book says, the only thing left to the Eastern Islanders by their ancestors.

But when a strange man washes ashore and Leia meets a Fool face to face, her life will never be the same. Is what she and her friends believe about the Island really true?

The Tribunal 

When Justa is summoned for jury duty in the Tribunal, she is sure of one thing: she needs to stick to the rules in order to get her best friend’s murderer convicted. In her society, jurisdiction is infallible. The choice ahead of her seems clear – but soon, Justa is forced to choose between justice and lies. Will she use her head over her heart, or will Aron, the accused who dares to look at her with such disdain in his eyes, change her mind for good?

DefiantMy Review
Defiant by Mari Li, Jen Minkman, Lis Lucassen 

What is a normal rite of passage for most young adults becomes a huge leap into the unknown for three teens. Living in dystopian worlds where the truth is not easily sorted from the lies they have been told, they becomes Defiant and dare to stand up to those around them. Authors, Mara Li, Jen Minkman and Lis Lucassen each have a tale to tell about the strength of the youthful spirit as the battle between what they have been told and what they see collide within their hearts and minds.

Mara Li’s tale, The Red Messenger is the story of one girl, reeling from her twin’s death who discovers the secret life her sister led with a group of rebels fighting religious and human tyranny. In a world defined by walls and having the correct physical traits, where the Third Reich and Hitler were victorious and the genocide of undesirables has run unchecked, a teen picks up the cause for her sister risking capture, discovery and even death.
Jen Minkman’s The Island is the story of a teen forced out of her family home by an age-old tradition, who discovers that the stories she was told about other lands, and peoples were untrue and created to instill fear in the hearts of her people and maintain control. Only a chance encounter with a boy from another tribe turns her flickering flame of curiosity for the truth into a raging inferno of doubt.

Lis Lucassen’s The Tribunal portrays a skewed “justice” system where the uninformed and emotionally immature are forced to sit in judgment of accused criminals, under the guise of just punishment when in truth this sham is far more sinister. Even those closest to her have dark and heinous secrets to hide, and the accused is the man who holds the truth. In a leap of faith, our heroine must decide to continue to follow blindly or to finally open her eyes to the bitter truth.

All three tales uncover the strength of youth, the courage of defiance against the powers that twist their control and the curiosity to ask the painful questions. Each tale is complete, well-written and the words of the authors provide an atmosphere that feels dark and veiled, much like the truths that have been uncovered! Great writing, wonderful world-building and characters who give new meaning to the word Hero.

I received an ARC edition from Jen Minkman in exchange for my honest review.

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