Secondborn (Secondborn #1) by Amy A. Bartol – Five Stars!

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Nine Fates of the Republic rule: The Fate of Virtues, Fate of Swords, Fate of Stars, Fate of Atoms, Fate of Suns, Fate of Diamonds, Fate of Moons, Fate of Seas, and Fate of Stones.

The Virtues rule over all. Swords = military and might. Stars = technology. Atoms = medical. Diamonds = entertainment and journalism. Stones = service-oriented. (I’m not sure that the book goes into what the others specialize in.) This book focuses mainly on the Swords.

The Fates are ruled by firstborns. Procreation is only allowed among firstborns and they can only have two children. The secondborn goes through a Transition, where he or she leaves his family and life to go into a type of job, like being a soldier, nurse, scientist, or if they are lucky, an assistant to a firstborn.

Once the secondborn transitions, they are treated as basically servants or slaves, make very little money (most goes to their firstborn sibling or parents), are not allowed to have relationships or children, and in the case of Swords, live communally in barracks.

This is about a secondborn named Roselle St. Sismode. Her mother is the Clarity of the Fate of Swords, a very powerful leader and politician. When she Transitions, she goes to a military base, where she is not expected to live long. The public has watched her grow up, but the foot soldiers think she is spoiled and not one of them.

The good thing is, she was trained her whole life to prepare for war by a kick-ass warrior named Dune, and isn’t so easy to kill. She finds new friends and of course gets wrapped up in a rebellion.

I LOVED this! I love dystopians, so may be a bit biased, but this is a perfect offering for the genre. Yes, it does possibly have similarities to other famous dystopians, but that doesn’t bother me a bit. It’s a little bit Mockingjay (this is more sci-fi with flying ships and technology).

The Census is another part of this twisted world. Those who work in it search for thirdborns and kill them (and the mother)! They also work to uncover traitors and anyone breaking laws. The are basically unpoliced. Crow is one of them who has his twisted eyes on Roselle.

I think this would make a great movie too!

Other reasons I liked this:

1. Roselle is a good female lead!
2. I liked the romantic interest.
3. I loved Crow, the villain. Love to hate, I should say.
4. I loved Clifton, the wealthy firstborn playboy, who is probably evil, but acts good – for now.
5. I LOVED Flannigan, the best minor character ever.
6. I devoured this in one day.
7. Roselle’s mother, Othala needs to be taken down! I hope she gets what is coming to her!
8. I loved the ragtag crew Roselle befriends – Edgerton and Hammon (Gilad, not sure about him).
9. The cyborg wolfhounds were cool!
10. No annoying angst or drama!

The follow up comes out in April 2018 and is on Netgalley!

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