by Mike Okada
After a plague of electric flesh-eating insects left the world in ruins, there were few safe places for surviving humans. Harmony was founded as a safe haven for humans to live and raise their families; the most important rule being never to let an Outsider in. With the destruction of most of the insects came a mutation in humans called nicks, which the Founders of Harmony were terrified of. Liam’s nick must be kept hidden at all times if he is to remain in Harmony, but that’s not the only thing threatening him. While on guard duty, he spots a group of three Outsiders heading towards Harmony. The rule is to shoot them at once, but when Liam spots red crosses on their robes, he is forced to hesitate. They are not a threat to Liam, but the struggle to protect them is.
Upon their arrival in Harmony, strange things start to happen to the town. Liam knows that this is not their doing, but is instead the work of the Boy of Blue Fire. He has the ability to enter the dreams of people and cause them to lose their sense of reality. All Liam knows is Blue wants his nick, and he’ll stop at nothing to get it. Liam and his friends, with the help of a mechanical cat, and an ethereal serpent, must discover the secrets of Harmony and begin their journey to silence the Boy of Blue Fire.
I can't say that I loved this book, but I didn't hate it either. I'm floating somewhere in the middle, but I feel okay with that.
There is a lot of potential here, the only problem is the way it was delivered. I found the first half of the book on the taxing side. It just seemed that there was a lot of information that could have been condensed, or even given in a different manor. I felt this the most when Maria, Will and Rhea where telling their story.
But when things did start moving I found that I was really starting to enjoy myself. A lot of surprising things kept popping up and I found myself completely drawn in by the time I got to the end. I especially liked the secret behind Harmony, it made sense but I wouldn't have guessed it.
I really liked the concept of the Nicks, and how the end of everything came about. Its not something that I have come across before and it was interesting learning what everyone could do and seeing them come together with each other when the time came.
The book is told from couple of different point of views, which is something I normally love but I had a very hard time keep track of whose head I was in. There was really no warning for when I jumped from person to person, eventually I got used to it and was able to pick up on it faster, but I did find it frustrating.
I'm not to sure how much I liked the somewhat romantic element that was added. I can see why it was there, but to me it didn't seem like it was something important. The friendship between the two of them seemed enough to get the same reaction when the time came. It seemed for a little while there was going to be a love triangle, but it didn't go anywhere which I was thankful for, I really just don't like love triangles.
I can say I didn't see the ending coming, and I would like to learn more about the Boy of Blue Fire and what exactly his goal is and why he is the way he is. I find him extremely interesting as he doesn't come across as your average villain. I'm also very interesting in learning more about the Sentinels and what exactly their purpose is.
Would I recommend this book? Yes, all in all I did like the book, but like I said I didn't love it. The author does have talent and I can see him putting out some truly amazing works in the future.