cornerofmadness (cornerofmadness) wrote in 50bookchallenge,

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Book 49

Broken (The Extrahuman Union, #1)Broken by Susan Jane Bigelow

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

In full disclosure, I won a copy of Broken via a Goodreads Giveaway but that hasn't influenced my opinion in any way. I don't think I read all the way to the bottom of the blurb or I might not have put in for it as I'm not really a fan of dystopias. That said, this was very good and if I liked dystopias I would have really enjoyed it even more.

Michael is one of the 'extrahumans.' He can see the future but only if he's making eye contact with the person in question. He can see many possible futures at once but it's enough to get him into place to receive a baby from a desperate mother who then throws her life away. Michael knows Ian will do one of two things, he either gets to Valen, an earth colony and becomes a benevolent leader or he is raised by the new President Pellitan and his new fascist world government which is currently clawing away the remnants of the last world government and very violently at that. This particular Ian will be a monstrous leader. Michael, there fore is desperate to get baby Ian to Valen.

But that will be harder to do than say. Michael is telling people he's eighteen though he's much younger. He isn't much of a fighter but he knows of someone who is, Silverwyng, another extrahuman. She used to fly with Sky Ranger (sort of superman type but he's very naive and currently the pawn of the fascist murderous government.). Michael finds her but now she goes by the name Broken because she can no longer fly. She can still heal very fast, impossible to kill (puts me in mind of Wolverine and Deadpool). Also most of her memories are broken and she's homeless. She doesn't see any reason to help Michael at first but she signs on eventually.

Together they try to get out of New York, to the off-world shuttle in Jersey but the government is rounding up anyone from the previous government and is either imprisoning or killing them. It's trying to use the citizens to help in this, leaving Michael and Broken very few options. They do have some allies along the way, like Monica, with whom Michael can see a long future with provided they survive at all. Most of his futures Michael knows he dies at the hands of the Thin Man.

And the Thin Man isn't far behind him and he's holding Sky Ranger's leash.

Like many dystopics, this is bleak without much hope to go on. But there is some. Michael, Broken and Monica are Ian (and Earth's) only hope. If they succeed, an earth-alien alliance will be made and peace will follow. If the Thin Man gets Ian, the brutal totalitarian government goes on.

The author makes some brave, startling choices in this narrative. It's good enough to make me want to read on, though it being dystopic makes me pause. If you like dystopic fiction with strong characters (both female and male) you'll enjoy this.

View all my reviews
Tags: dystopia, sci-fi

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