Book Review: Year One (Chronicles of The One #1) by Nora Roberts
I’ve had this dystopian/urban fantasy mash up on my Kindle for a while now and am so happy I decided to take the plunge and move it up to the top of my TBR because I really enjoyed it.
Published in 2017, it’s all about a global pandemic with a deadly sickness call the Doom that spreads like wildfire. I have to admit – reading the early chapters during the midst of the current pandemic gave me some extreme anxiety and I nearly put this book down!
However, I’m pleased I persevered because some of those who are immune start to develop magical powers. We follow a few of these survivors in New York, including Arlys, a TV news journalist, her assistant Fred and her source Chuck. Lana and Max, who are both growing in incredible magical abilities. And Jonah, a paramedic, doctor Rachel and a mother and three babies who they vow to keep alive.
Each ‘thread’ involves a harrowing escape from the city, where law and order is disintegrating quickly into chaos. Those who are immune with magical power are either good and of the light, or bad and following dark, dark magic. And those who are immune but with no magical powers are either good or bad – and the bad are terrorising the city and running riot. There is also the military, who are attempting to keep order but who are rounding up the healthy to forcibly take to facilities for ‘testing’ to try and find a cure. Either way, there are a lot of dangers in the city and our characters want out.
Once free of the city, we then follow them as they survive, gather and process what has happened. Lana and Max are betrayed by some they stay with, and Lana becomes the main character with a very important role to play.
The characters persevere, adapt, are kind and have hope. It was a thrilling read to follow their survival in this dangerous, chaotic new world and to watch as magical characters learn more about their abilities. I was routing for all of them! And, oh my, what an ending – I can’t wait to find out what happens next.
The reason this isn’t a five-star book for me is because I didn’t quite get on with some of the writing, which threw me out of the story. It was usually with lists of things. Too many commas, a lack of ‘and’ or a tacked-on sentence that could’ve been part of the list. I just found it really odd – and annoying. Also, at the end it became a bit of a birthing manual (TMI!) and then most of the main female MCs had babies?! If they could scavenge diabetes medicine, they could definitely find some condoms / birth control pills.
Otherwise this was a great read, with all the emotions, but if you’re feeling any anxiety about the current pandemic then maybe wait to read this one.
My rating: 4/5
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>> The first two books in my grimdark epic fantasy trilogy In the Heart of the Mountains are out now. Book three is COMING SOON! Melokai (#1) is available at Amazon, Kobo, iBooks, Google Play Books and Barnes & Noble. Violya (#2) is available at Amazon, Kobo, iBooks, Google Play Books and Barnes & Noble. Read more about my books here. <<
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