Welcome to my stop on the official blog tour for The Redeemers! Today I'll be sharing my review of the book with you - and don't forget to enter the giveaway! To follow the rest of the tour, click on the banner above.
Author: Kate Morgan
Release Date: August 3, 2015
Publisher: Dark Recesses Press
With nothing left to lose, Annie embarks upon a quest for the dark, disturbing truth of why - never imagining how deep the trail leads.
The Redeemers is a dystopian mystery novel that's full of twists and chilling secrets. It follows our main character - Annie - whose world went from happily normal to absolutely horrifying almost overnight. Annie was married to the city's leatherworker and she was pregnant with their first child. Their life was simple and happy, like most of the others living in Kansas City. All of that changed on the day her husband, Hank, was supposed to return home from getting new hides. Instead, an old man delivers his order with devastating news - Hank was found in the river, after being robbed (or so they think). Annie's world comes crashing down around her. Luckily, her best friend Sara lives across the street and is present when Annie receives the news. Sara and her husband, Max, take Annie in until she can get back on her feet. Things are starting to look a bit brighter, until Annie finds a strange message written on a piece of expensive paper hidden in Hank's workshop. She doesn't understand what it means, but is determined to find out. Later that same night, two hooded men slip into Annie's house and abduct her. When she finally wakes up, she's in a small stone cell. Finally, after days of no food, water, or human interaction of any kind; a small group of these hooded people take her from the cell and proceed to nail her to a cross, presumably until she dies. She's almost given up hope and is ready to succumb to the darkness when another group of masked people show up and take her down from her cross, hide her away somewhere underground, and then heal her. They won't reveal themselves to her or answer any of her questions, which only adds to the confusion and pain Annie feels. When they finally tell her that she lost the baby during her torture, her pain goes further than she ever thought possible - and she vows to find out who these people are, why they took her, and then exact her revenge for what they did to her. Annie isn't allowed to stay in Kansas City and must remain 'dead' to everyone who may have known her. She begins to wander from city to city attempting to put together the information she's gathering about the strange message of Hank's along with what happened to her. Before long, she starts to piece together the puzzle and the horrifying truth that it holds.
This was a very original and highly unique novel - unlike anything I've read before. I liked that the author blends so many different genres and concepts together to create Annie's story. There's the dystopian aspect - Annie lives in the year 2216, a long time after what is referred to as the Great War. Things have basically gone back to the way they were when the United States was starting to be populated - a simpler life without any electricity and where everyone had their own trade. Inside of this fascinating world are the Redeemers - the ones who saved humanity from extinction during the Great War. They are revered almost like Gods, but in human form. It's sort of hard to explain without context. Aside from this world the author created, there are the Redeemers - who I mentioned - and then a huge Christian-based conspiracy that's basically behind everything. This is very obvious, especially when Annie is taken and then nailed to the cross - just as Jesus was crucified. The Redeemers were also singing/speaking in Latin. I didn't look up what the words translated into, but it came across as very religious. It's hard to put all of these aspects and concepts into a small box and then attempt to label it - it can't really be done. All I can say is that the mystery, conspiracy, and all the lies and secrets throughout the novel were incredibly well written and kept me guessing until the end. There were definitely lots of twists and unexpected turns that you won't see coming, and will probably squash any ideas you might have had about what was really going on. I loved that the mystery was so ingrained into the novel and that it contained such a variety of people, places, and ideas. I was immediately captured by the enigma and I found myself reading as quickly as I could to see what was going to happen next.
Some aspects of the novel felt a bit off to me though. They weren't anything major, just small things - for example, a ton of action takes place in the first couple of chapters - but I felt bored reading most of it, which is odd. I can't put my finger on the reasons it felt that way to me - I guess it just didn't have me engaged as much as I could have or should have been in order to lose myself to the story at that point. I never really did fully slip inside Annie's world completely, which I think is another reason I didn't get more caught up in the book and all that was happening. The characters were decently written, although the secondary characters seemed a bit flat and stereotypical. Annie was a good main character - she's smart, strong in both body and mind, and determined to get to the bottom of everything so she can make the people who ruined her life pay for their actions. I enjoyed watching her journey as she moved from town to town, engaged with various people, and gathered more and more information and puzzle pieces to help solve her mystery. The book was written in the third person point of view, which is probably another reason that I couldn't fully immerse myself into the story. I'm a strong advocate for first person point of view because of the deeply personal level the reader gets to know the narrator. Because we're privy to such intimate knowledge of the character, it's so much easier to identify with them as well as to find yourself experiencing everything in the book as if you were right beside them. I believe that this book would have turned out much differently - in a positive way - if it had been written in the first person POV from Annie's perspective. Overall, the writing was solid and the story had a natural pace that quickened the further into the mystery we get. Aside from the issues I had with the book, I think that it was highly inventive and different from anything else out there - and I truly enjoyed reading it. I'd recommend this book to fans of lots of genres, especially dystopias, fantasy, science fiction, horror, thrillers, suspense, action, adventure - there's basically something for everyone. It's definitely worth a look even if you don't end up loving everything about it - it defies traditional labeling and is full of unique aspects and concepts that you won't find anywhere else.
Kate Morgan is a darn good cook. She grows her own veggies, knits stuffed monsters, and watches lots of Hammer Horror.
Buy Link: Amazon
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