“Deception” by C.J. Redwine
4 1/2 out of 5 stars.
Baalboden is gone, burned and condensed down to nothing but ashes. There are just over a hundred survivors after the fatal attack by the Cursed One, which killed, and these broken people have chosen Logan to be their leader. But he’s just a young kid trying to stay alive; they’re all just trying to stay alive, yet they are prepared to follow him wherever he may lead them. Logan barely knows how to save himself and Rachel, and he certainly doesn’t know how to lead a hundred-and-some people successfully into the Wasteland, and to SURVIVE the long trek to another city-state. But Logan has always been smart and scrappy, and somehow he will come up with a plan, a way to pull the impossible off with his friends alongside him. He will make the remaining people of Baalboden proud to call him their leader.
Plans never go as easily as we hope them to, and Logan’s are no exception. He has got a plan and it’s a good one, but someone among Baalboden’s survivors is sabotaging Logan inventions, slowing his plan for a safe departure into the Wasteland. Logan has only got so much time before other city states hear of Baalboden’s destruction and they come to hunt him and his people down. Sure, they’re petty pranks, but it is still costing him time, and time is something Logan has very little of. Soon enough, though, Logan finds out that his time is already up: the Commander is back, and he wants revenge.
Rachel is a different girl now. Stars don’t dance in her eyes anymore, and the sun doesn’t warm her from the inside out like it should. Everything is empty now that her father, Jared, and her adoptive grandfather, Oliver, are gone. Rachel is drowning and the only person keeping her afloat is Logan. But he has so many people to take care of now, and he doesn’t need to hear her troubles; he doesn’t need another burden. So she learns to close in on herself and contain her fears while the sun is up. But when the moon rises and Rachel slips into sleep, everything she hates and wants to hide from haunts her dreams. There is no redemption for someone like her, no matter what Logan says, no matter what anyone says. People like her don’t deserve mercy, and sooner rather than later, she will have to pay for her crimes. But before that day comes, Rachel has something to deliver to the Commander. In person.
With the weight of the world on their shoulders, Logan, Rachel, and their friends begin to lead Baalboden’s citizens out of their ruined city and into the Wasteland. But it seems that every force is ready to contend with them. The Commander is constantly on their tail, Rowansmark is now tracking them, and the Cursed One could show up at any time. Could things get any worse? Sadly for the already ragged group, things do get worse. Soon the little pranks begin to escalate into threatening letters in Logan pack. Each time something happens in their camp, it becomes more and more sinister until it begins to turn into murder. Innocent people are being picked off and Logan cannot figure out why and who is doing the dastardly deed. Can Logan and Rachel find the culprit before the refugees are eliminated one after another and they themselves come face to face with the killer, or are their lives going to be cut short because of a sin they didn’t even know they committed? And can Rachel overcome the darkness that seems to consume her, or is she to be swallowed whole by all that she has done?
It has been a LONG wait for this book. My sister bought “Defiance” by C.J. Redwine a week or two after it came out last year, and we both just LOVED it!! “Defiance” was amazing, and the more I think about it the more I love the story; it is a five-star book for me. So, having to wait a year for the next installment to be released was pretty painful, but patience is definitely rewarded.
“Deception” is a great book, but I want to warn you it is pretty dark. A whole lot of “you know what” is hitting the fan at ALL times. There is never really a down moment, and my stomach was twisting at the thought of what might happen next; my stomach had quite a few reasons to twist while reading this book. It was like I was experiencing a train wreck over and over again!!! It was terrible and horrible, and wonderful all at the same time!
Logan was amazing as usual! I love him still, but I was a little bummed that I didn’t get as many heartfelt scenes between him and Rachel in this book as I did in “Defiance.” The moments I did get were good, but I guess I wanted more of what they had in the beginning of the first book.
Rachel was also a good character. I will warn you, she is kind of crazy in this book. A bit more than in the first, but I was okay with that because I really understood her inner turmoil, and I wanted to see her overcome it. It broke my heart to see her shut so many people who loved her out of her heart; it is understandable, but still sad. I am looking forward to seeing how C.J. resolves what’s going on inside of Rachel in the third and final book.
Overall, “Deception” is a great, explosive read, and I really enjoyed it. The only reason I am not giving it five stars is because of how dark it was. With “Defiance” I really liked the grittiness of Redwine’s world, and I loved how despite all of the despair and pain that the characters endured, there was still hope because they had each other. “Deception” had that nearing the end, but I felt like that ray of “sunshine” didn’t come across quite as strong as it did in the first book (or it should have been introduced earlier on in this book), and with this one being so much darker, it needed a LOT of sunshine! But overall, “Deception” is an amazingly well written book. Loved it! Now I must wait for the last book in this trilogy…
Why does it hurt so much?