Sunday, 1 June 2014
Book: Banded by Logan Byrne
Kalenna is taken away at 16 with the rest of the people her age, to HQ where she is assigned to one of the six zones that make up society. Placed away from her family, and in Alturistic, the zone that most often provides doctors and medical staff, she is devastated, but she easily makes friends with fellow Alturistic, Gavin, as well as an Astute, Ivan, and a Stalwart, Jehrico. Though they know they will be separated after training, the four quickly become close, and agree that something is not quite right in society. They think at first that they won't find anything, but it quickly becomes clear that Kalenna knows far more than even she thought she did.
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The YA-dystopia rises again! It took me a little while to get into Banded, but I do think that that was to do with my mood when I started reading, because once I picked the book back up I got sucked in and didn't want the story to end. I couldn't help but think that there were several elements of originality to this book, that complimented some plot devices that have been used a lot.
I've already mentioned that there were zones that the characters were sorted into, I was a little worried at first that this was just some other form of Divergent, but it was easy to see the differences in the end, namely because the sorting was very different, as there was no real test (think more along the lines of a technological version of the Sorting Hat from Harry Potter). I was glad when the story took off in its own!
The romance in the story (between Gavin and Kalenna) was very light, which was a somewhat welcome compared to some of the love triangles that are often used in dystopias. The pair flirted a bit, and did clearly like each other, but that didn't stop them interacting with other people which was good!
Something else that struck me was the details of the tournament that the characters took part in. I don't think I've read anything that was quite so competitively violent without actually being used to kill. Though when Kaleena and Gavin take their turn against each other I couldn't help but think that they were having fun, there was just something that the author did extremely well!
I really enjoyed Banded, and want to know more (plus I have some theories that I need answers for!)