The Hunger Games meets Cormac McCarthy’s The Road in this richly imagined first novel in a new post-apocalyptic trilogy by award-winning poet Francesca Haig.
Four hundred years in the future, the Earth has turned primitive following a nuclear fire that has laid waste to civilization and nature. Though the radiation fallout has ended, for some unknowable reason every person is born with a twin. Of each pair, one is an Alpha—physically perfect in every way; and the other an Omega—burdened with deformity, small or large. With the Council ruling an apartheid-like society, Omegas are branded and ostracized while the Alphas have gathered the world’s sparse resources for themselves. Though proclaiming their superiority, for all their effort Alphas cannot escape one harsh fact: Whenever one twin dies, so does the other.
Cass is a rare Omega, one burdened with psychic foresight. While her twin, Zach, gains power on the Alpha Council, she dares to dream the most dangerous dream of all: equality. For daring to envision a world in which Alphas and Omegas live side-by-side as equals, both the Council and the Resistance have her in their sights.
***I received an ARC copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review***
The Fire Sermon is a dystopian novel in which the world has evolved so drastically that now everyone is born in sets of twins, one is an Alpha, perfect and superior, the other is an Omega with some sort of deformity/other illness, then there are the rare Omega’s that are gifted as seers. The twins are so connected that if one of them dies, so does the other. Cass just so happens to be one of those seer Omega’s, whilst her twin and Alpha brother Zach rises to the top, he finds himself increasingly threatened by Cass’ abilities and takes extreme measures to protect himself. Soon Cass befriends an unlikely ally and is on the run from the Alphas in what becomes a plot that could change their society forevermore.
Sounds like a pretty darn interesting premise right? Yeah I thought so too! Only it failed! Okay okay maybe I’m being a little harsh, but the set up for this story can only be described as slow. Once I hit 20% I really started to lose hope, but then there was a sudden spike in the content that had me holding on. Cass saves someone (a boy someone) who becomes a huge part of her life, and suddenly the story got interesting and a little intense, and then it just plateaued right away again! In fact, most of this novel basically flat lined, there were a few peaks yes, but it quickly spiraled into dragged on plot filler with little to no movement in the overall storyline. And by the time some romance stirred up between Cass and the boy she saves (won’t say his name) it was abrupt, slightly out of context, and felt a little underdeveloped. By the time the ending rolled around I discovered that I had in fact predicted the plot twist from the start, although the part that I did not predict had me dropping my rating of this book even further. Let’s just say there was a death that can not ever be reconciled! Ugh why?!
So yes, I give this book props for it’s ingenuity, but the story itself drew out events for way too long until what was happening was no longer thrilling anymore. There really wasn’t even much of a cliffhanger in the ending either, so I probably won’t be reading book two. Sorry for the negative review guys.
If you’d like to, pre-order The Fire Sermon on Amazon here. It releases on March 10th.