by Amy Ewing
Click the cover to read the premise on Goodreads.
I'm going to be a bit harsh with this book because I did enjoy it and I usually rate books I enjoy a tad higher than 3.25 stars.
The world is so... constricted, it's irritating. Outside of this city is an ocean that would wipe out the known world, starting with the poorest on the outer ring. At first glance, this is a cool idea... isolated city... maybe. But I'm NOT a fan of The Lord of the Flies and throwing a bunch of human beings into a constricted place brings out the worst in us in so many cases. I suppose what I hate about that is that not everyone is so evil, but the ones that are rule the world because they're ruthless and willing to do things the nice people won't. So the evil "win" or dominate. BOOOO!!!!!!!
This version of dominating evil includes fancy makeup and some super-cute outfits. Every bit of enjoying the fluff makes me want to growl, however, since evil may dress nicely, but it's still evil.
There's also some insight into the wicked dominator of the west, otherwise known as the purchaser of Violet, or the Duchess. The Duchess of something-or-other, I'm not thrilled with these politics because they're so darn rigid. Speaking of... I really wanted to think more highly of the Electress, since she came from another class. Or the niece, who also came from that class. To discover that both of them are as wicked and selfish as the dominating founders of this stupid city just multiplies the hopelessness of ever surviving.
Maybe I'm one of those people who examine the odds and quit if I'm so far behind, there's no way I can win. I honestly feel like Violet has no good choices and even by the end, her desperate moves might result in continuing to breathe, but where? as whom? And honestly, what's the point? Becoming a bomb and taking out as many evil dominators as possible seems to me as viable a solution as trying to escape.
So... I sympathize with Violet. I like her. I like her decisions, as much as she has them. Including her decisions about Asher. I was totally cheering her on for living in the moment she's given. Why not? The world is, uh, believable and vibrant, even if it stinks. The supporting cast is good. I'm not sure who to trust. I will probably read the next in the series (also pretty cover, although I'm no longer fooled.) Or... I may read reviews and decide to kill this one while I still have my imagination to give Violet wings to fly from this city and find another continent.