Review: Darkness

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Darkness

Author: Victoria Sadler
Genres/ subjects: dystopian, feminist, military
Rating: ****

Goodreads link.

 

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The West has fallen – defeated at home by economic collapse and abroad by war and environmental catastrophe. But not everyone wants to rebuild the world the way it was.

In the former United Kingdom, a group of female terrorists, RAZR, is seizing the opportunity to destroy the patriarchal state for good.

Laura is the sole survivor from her block of flats. When her attempt to reach safety is sabotaged by a surprise attack from RAZR, she finds herself swept up in their crusade, under the sway of their dangerously charismatic leader, Jane.

But is Jane the enemy? Or is she a saviour? And what kind of future is she fighting for? As Laura battles her way through a ruined landscape, she will need to choose whose side she’s on. For in the fog of war, it can be hard to tell light from darkness…

 

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“Any man who takes control of a woman’s rights at any stage of her life is a terrorist.”

Dystopias aren’t my usual thing, but I’m really glad I gave this one a go. The is fast-paced and full of dramatic moments, and Laura (the lead) is likeable and sensible. The book does a good job of realistically portraying conflicting political viewpoints, in that as Laura speaks to different people, you are never really sure who to trust, or even what the best solution will be. The story is very female-centric with only a few passing characters that are male, and amongst the female characters Sadler has managed to show various types of women, with different personalities and types of strengths, avoiding the trap of ‘Sexy-Badass-Warrior’ or ‘Strong-Female-Character’. Jane and her sister Anne  are in many ways opposite personalities, yet both are well developed and believable.

My only gripe with this book was that the ending was a little rushed and muddled, and felt like it cut-off rather abruptly.

A really good and unusual story, I’m glad I ventured out of my comfort zone to read it.

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