Adventure (Teen), Dystopia (Teen), Fantasy (Teen), Series, YA Fiction

Awaken by Michelle Bryan – New Bloods Trilogy #1

I received this novel as an advanced copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

The world may be broken after the Shift, with its unforgiving sand lands and its shortage of food and water. But for Tara, it is home. It is where she lives happily with her grada and the rest of her kin, hunting and telling stories. But one event causes her to lose everything she has held dear – including her identity. She is no longer just an ordinary girl. Instead, she soon discovers that she is one of a unique breed known as New Bloods, and has incredible powers to boot! As she struggles to embrace her identity, Tara decides to go into the unknown to rescue those she loves from the grip of the merciless Prezedant.

This is a YA fiction story that has a Western influence to it. It seems lately that more and more of the books I am reading have a Western setting – not that I mind! This story is your typical YA fantasy story. You’ve got your plucky heroine, who denies everything about her identity and powers until she no longer can. You’ve got the ragtag crew of friends who are a source of comfort and help. You’ve got a budding love interest that starts off with the whole heart-pounding-really-fast-when-close scenario. And you’ve got an evil villain who pretty much stays in the shadows but is looming in everyone’s minds. The story moved at a fast pace and had a good host of characters. I didn’t really like Tara that much, because she seemed a little … slow in her ability to comprehend what was going on. I get tired of stubborn main characters unless they have something unique about them – and unfortunately, Tara was not unique. Maybe it was the fast pace, but I felt like the story lacked depth. There was nothing that made it overly special, and there was nothing that pulled at my emotions. While it was well-written, there was just nothing memorable about it. I hope the sequel deviates more from the norm because I can definitely see the potential in this series!


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