A great addition to YA dystopian fantasy. This was a great read that had me coming back until I finished. Ms. Quinn has some awesome world-building skills. I enjoyed the main character's voice a lot, and felt that she was fairly believable as a teenager and a heroine.
What kept it from being 5 stars was a few minor things. One, that the main character was, as is found fairly often in YA lit, unbelievably good at her extremely new-found talent. She didn't seem to do much in the way of practicing (and she had no previous knowledge of what jackers could do), but still managed to lay all of the bad guys that crossed her path, and with little to no effort on her part. Two, everyone apart from the main character was fairly static and boring--not too many surprises or changes in character for them. And three, although the world-building was mostly well done (interesting, fresh), there were still several places where it either didn't feel as thought-out or the author brought in some new thing just to serve the plot.
Otherwise, though, an excellent book. I have already recommended it to several others and look forward to the next book in the series.
I really enjoyed the interplay between the hero and heroine and felt that their relationship progressed at a fairly realistic pace. My main issue with this book is the heroine's complete blindness to a certain-someone-close-to-her's true character, when it's pointed out time and again how smart and a good judge of character she is. I can understand being blind to someone you love's faults, but complete inability to see a horrid person when he's standing right in front of you . . . not buying it. I also felt that one of the main villain's end story was a little too much. If you can get past those two things, this is a very enjoyable read.
If you're looking for some great SFR to read, get this book. It has three fun/sweet/scifi-y books just waiting to be read.
"All That Glitters" by Erin Kellison - This was my favorite of the three, and it deserves 5 stars on its own. This is a returning lovers story, where the heroine and hero were in love years before and circumstance tore them apart. They meet again, each seeing large character changes in the other, which helps bring about their HEA for good in the end. The world building was neat (would love to see more in a full-length novel), the plot line believable, and the characters endearing.
"To Buy a Wife" by KC Klein - I waffled between a 3.5 and 4 stars on this one. The world building was cool, but more for sake of coolness than anything else. I had trouble seeing how this particular society had developed, with women basically being breeders/currency in a post-tech age. Maybe a longer story would have time to justify the ideas more, but it just didn't work in a novella format. The hero and heroine fell fairly flat for me, and I spent most of the novella wondering how the heroine would fall in love with the hero. The ending was well done, though, so I think that moves the rating up to 4 stars.
"Enslaved by Starlight" by Jessa Slade - This one rated about 3.7/3.8 stars for me, and mostly for one big, flaming reason--I could not stop comparing to/thinking about the TV show Firefly, mostly the characters of Mal and Inara, while reading this. That alone ruined my reading for two reasons. 1) I kept overlaying the stories in my brain, and then becoming upset when the Mal or Inara character acted "out of character." 2) It felt a bit like the author cheated and reused the Mal/Inara theme, and didn't work enough to develop her own characters. If you've not seen Firefly, or if you enjoy Firefly fan-fic, though, you'll love this. The world building was pretty good for a novella, and even the minor characters had some depth to them.
Overall, I do really recommend this book, because its damn hard to find decent SFR today, and you should support the people who manage to do it well.
This story was such a breeze to read through. The writing, though simple enough, kept me flowing along the storyline, never bogged down or hindered by clumsy exposition or too much talking.
I would have loved to have read a longer version of this, where the characters had more time to develop. Although Persephone does grow and change during the book, the rest of the characterization suffers from short story syndrome.
Unfortunately, this is most noticeable in Hades, the love interest. She remained very much an enigma even at the end. Zeus's villainous demeanor I can take, but I really wanted to see more of Hades, who had her own baggage to contend with. She reminded me of a Joss Whedon character--a female saddled with a lot of responsibility and pain who deals with it admirably--and I really wanted to see inside her head.
But otherwise, a very well-done novella. Gorgeous prose, a striking backdrop, and lovely emotions. I will definitely be reading more of Sarah Diemer in the future.