Thursday, February 7, 2013
Broken by Susan J. Bigelow
Broken by Susan J. Bigelow
In a post-war future world where First Contact has been made, humans are colonizing the stars, and the nations of Earth have been united under a central government, Extrahumans are required by law to belong to the Union. When a young man with visions of the future sets out on a mission to define the course of human history, he encounters a devastated former hero, a fascist dictatorship bent on world domination, and the realities of living in a society where affiliation is everything.
Broken figured she was done with heroics when she lost the ability to fly and fled the confinement of the Extrahuman Union. But then the world started to fall apart around her, and the mysterious Michael Forward entered her life, dangling the possibility of redemption and rebirth.
Michael Forward can see the future, but all he wants is to escape the destiny he has struggled against all his life. When the moment comes, though, he finds he can't refuse. Now he needs the help of a homeless ex-superhero to save a baby who may be the key to humanity's freedom.
Monica had a good life with her large family, until two strangers and a baby showed up at her door. Now her family is gone, her life is in ruins, and she's on the run from the law.
In a time of spreading darkness, when paranoia and oppression have overtaken the world, can three unlikely allies preserve a small ray of hope for a better, brighter future?
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
This starts of with typical enough boy in-over-his-head then gets more interesting with each introduction. Where ‘Broken’ is as Broken does and then yet another ‘Extrahuman’ (superhero in other words) behaves just as you’d think *read: full of himself*.
Better though is the there being no need to shake any of those standards off; they’re central to everything here. Him, being in over his head is most of what’s going on has us piecing who he is together with where they are and who the rest of them are. I enjoyed the kid though, him cobbling things together as he was and being all fly by the seat of his pants, made for jarring transitions, still more jarring considering each his flashes of could-be’s (as well as Broken’s flashbacks.) I suppose that sense of confusion he was going through, we go through as well because more often than not, those moments came out of nowhere. And that was good… well, at least: different.
And as he’s making sense of things and doing what needs be, he encounters all manner of people… some one dimensional in how good/bad they could be, others more interesting in the conflict they make possible. It’s Monica who springs immediately to mind when thinking of that last; all those questions and all her asides about God and afterlife whatnot. I felt an ‘Oh come on!’ coming on every time she’d open her mouth. Then other aspects had me raising my brow, him and a certain someone specifically had me slightly icked out (OK, more than slightly, if I’m being honest here) mainly because things went from 100 an hour to 0 in a blink… it was another of those jarring shifts.
Some others aspects too left me wanting more, particularly the world they’re in. I liked it. The different lifestyles, the different super power… and the funny (not so funny, really) reversal of positions as well as the varying reactions of all because of those. Some go crazy, some go for the different and in the midst of that: boy, in over his head meeting a do-gooder who’s lost all sense of good. Then the both of them making head/tails of what is and meeting this and that then coming out stronger and a bit more aware. Except it’s Broken’s being broken that’s the better part. As burnt out goody good looking for a way out but failing time and again, she kept things interesting with each attempt described in very specific detail. Think Heroes and its cheerleader, but replace the latter’s sense of curiosity with the former’s sense of loss… and things get interesting (to say the least).
Thank You Net Galley!
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