About the Book
Author: Kristen Young
Genre: Christian Science Fiction
Release Date: October 20, 2020
The Love Collective is everywhere.
It sees everything.
Be not afraid.
Apprentice Flick remembers everything, except the first five years of her life. And for as long as she can remember, Flick has wanted to enter the Elite Academy—home to the best, brightest, and most loyal members of the Love Collective government.
Flick’s uncanny memory might get her there, too … even if it is the very thing that marks her as a freak. But frightening hallucinations start intruding into her days and threaten to bring down all she has worked so hard to accomplish. Why is she being hijacked by a stranger’s nightmare over and over again?
Moving to the Elite Academy could give Flick the future she’s always wanted. But her search for truth may lead to a danger she cannot escape.
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I thoroughly enjoyed this youth dystopian novel. The world building was excellent. Young children are systematically molded into obedient young people suitable to perpetuate the controlling society. Questioning any instructions would mean reprogramming. I like how the plot developed. We learn some surprising insights to this troubling world as Kerr does.
The characters were developed well. I found Kerr to be an engaging character. I felt her discomfort with her total memory recall. Her terror at the nightmares and vague memories of early childhood were portrayed well. I applauded her desire to be the best she could be, even if it meant her own destruction.
Young readers will like this novel. There is lots of advanced technical stuff like testing with virtual reality and augmented reality. There is a good heroine and good support characters and a couple of terribly mean ones too. And there is just a hint of Christianity in it. We are left with mysteries being revealed and the potential of a new future. I will be watching for the next in the series to see how the exciting story develops.
My rating: 5/5 stars.
About the Author
More from Kristen
An interview with Kristen Young
Q: How long have you been writing?
I was the kid who used to create little booklets and puzzle magazines for the family. So writing is something that I’ve been doing for a long time. It wasn’t quite publication-worthy back then, but it was fun. I had to practice a little more before people outside my family wanted to see it.
Q: Where do you write?
Anywhere I have access to a laptop or a pen. I have a desk at home where most of the writing happens, but I usually carry a notebook in my bag in case inspiration hits when I’m out. People think I’m a little eccentric when I’m madly scribbling in the middle of the supermarket. But I have to get that scene idea down before I forget!
Q: What is your writing Kryptonite?
Distractions. For me, writing preparation is a little like building a house of cards — that process of getting my thoughts in order and working out the story direction. Distractions are like the gust of wind that knocks the whole construction over. I usually wear noise-cancelling headphones to try and keep me focused on the process.
Q: Where’s your favourite story setting?
I’m still looking for that wardrobe with a door to Narnia.
Q: What’s the first book that made you cry?
I’m not sure if I can share that without giving spoilers! But I’d have to say Charlotte’s Web. When I read that as a child, it had me wrecked for ages.
Q: Have you read anything that totally changed your idea of the way fiction could be written?
There are a couple of books that totally changed my view of fiction. The first was Margaret Atwood’s novel The Blind Assassin. I was totally captivated by the way she mixed newspaper articles and other media with the narrative sections. It was mind-blowing at the time.
Jasper Fforde’s series that started with The Eyre Affair was also pretty amazing. It took a whole pile of literary references and completely messed with them. It was enormous fun.
Q: So why set something in a world called the “Love Collective”?
I like words, and I’m fascinated by the way people often play with them, or even weaponise them. I kind of wanted to explore this word ‘love’ and what it means. In English, we have this one word to refer to so many different kinds of concepts. I wanted to write an exciting story, so it seemed right to have this concept as a backdrop behind the action, where you’re asking, “What does this mean?”
Q: Your main character never forgets anything. Is she like you?
No way. I think Flick’s memory is a bit of wish fulfilment from me. It was so hard writing her, because I forget so many details! In some ways forgetting is protective. But in other ways I’d love to have her memory.
Q: What can we expect in the rest of the Collective Underground Trilogy?
I can’t tell you the whole story, that would ruin the fun. But in the first book, Flick’s world has started really small, and she’s going to broaden her horizons. She’ll get to explore more of this Love Collective. There also might be some more danger, too. Or more love. We’ll see…
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Library Lady's Kid Lit, November 2
Debbie's Dusty Deliberations, November 2
Texas Book-aholic, November 3
Inklings and notions, November 4
April Hayman, Author, November 4
For Him and My Family, November 5
Locks, Hooks and Books, November 6
deb's Book Review, November 6
Worthy2Read, November 7
Woven by Words, November 7
Emily Yager, November 9
Artistic Nobody, November 9 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)
Sara Jane Jacobs, November 10
Simple Harvest Reads, November 11 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)
Ashley’s Bookshelf, November 11
Adventures of A Travelers Wife, November 12
Through the Fire Blogs, November 12
Splashes of Joy, November 13
Inside the Wong Mind, November 13
To celebrate her tour, Kristen is giving away the grand prize of a $100 Amazon gift card!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
I received a complimentary digital copy of this book through Celebrate Lit. My comments are an independent and honest review.
(My star ratings: 5-I love it, 4-I like it, 3-It's OK, 2-I don't like it, 1-I hate it.)