Friday, July 28, 2017

The Review Chain: Article Three (Systemet #1) by Anna Jakobsson Lund + GIVEAWAY! (CLOSED)

Rating: PG-13
Genre: Dystopia, Science Fiction
Score: ❤❤❤1/2
Page Count: 349
Book #1 of the Systemet Trilogy
Publisher: Annorlunda förlag
Published: March 3rd, 2015

Trust will get you killed – and trust will keep you alive

In a world where the System governs everything, Ava’s a rebel – one who can control other people’s thoughts with her mind. As part of a resistance movement preparing for war, this is a useful skill. 

Levi stopped believing in the struggle for freedom when it snatched his parents from him. Now he’s just trying to live a quiet life and control the voices that threaten his sanity. 

One night Levi’s sister is arrested. To free her, he has to break old promises and get involved with people he swore he’d never associate with. Ava’s ordered to help him and, together, they leave on a rescue mission. She says he has to trust the rebels. But should they?

1. Special thank you to the very talented author herself for sending a physical copy of the book my way in order for me to review it! As part of The Review ChainI was sent a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review. Before I can ramble on too much about how interesting the synopsis sounded and how the sound of it had me interested in the novel when I first read it, let's just get right into the review, shall we? But can we appreciate that cover though?

2. Right off the bat, I was getting some CITY OF EMBER vibes from this novel which I was totally digging as the book played out. It's not necessarily a post-apocalyptic book, but it does take place in a time of uprising as it is an espionage action novel with an underlying dystopia tone that really intrigued me as I read the book. The main characters of this novel are working undercover to save one of their own who have been arrested by The System and have to go a long and potentially dangerous journey in order to save their friend. There were quite a few elements of this novel that I appreciated and made the story interesting and enjoyable as it plays out.

3. One thing I really loved about the novel was the world building. It was detailed yet simplified with the descriptions which made for a beautifully smooth and uncomplicated way of explaining the world of the book to the reader. The author used a simple and straightforward writing style which went very well with one of the POVs in this book as that particular character saw the world in a very straightforward, black-and-white way. At first, it was a little hard to get the hang of what the world looked and felt like since the beginning of the book wastes no time in getting right into the story but after a few pages, you're able to visualize this almost futuristic system with ease. 

4. Another thing I liked about this novel was the air of mistrust throughout the book. The characters can trust literally no one, not even each other as the rebellion takes shape and action on bringing down The System. With a lot to lose at stake for the character, the atmosphere of mistrust really adds that little extra magic to the story that kept me as a reader entertained and wanting to know who was really worthy of trusting and wondering just what each characters' motives really were. The paranoia that characters were feeling makes the reader feel as if they are on the mission with them, making it somewhat interactive in that sense.

Originally Published in Swedish March 3rd, 2015
1. While I enjoyed this novel for the most part, I was a little let down by the choice of it being written in third-person for the POVs of the characters. This novel would have been killer to read in first-person for each of the POVs as it would have allowed me personally to really connect with the characters and get to know them and how they think, feel, and act, which was something I wasn't able to do while reading. I'm not sure if the third-person writing kept me from attaching myself to the characters as it distanced them from me, or if it just didn't work for me because of the kind of fast-paced story it was but I was disappointed that none of the characters really clicked for me. I wanted to love them but I wasn't really able to connect with any of them for some reason.

2. There is a lot happening throughout the book and a lot of information coming at you about The System and the rebellion and while it is paced nicely, it's still a lot of info. I found myself kind of feeling like I was drowning in all the information at some points, it just wasn't sinking in fast enough. However, if you're the kind of reader who doesn't mind a lot of information about this kind of dystopia world, you might enjoy the book just fine.

Overall, I did really like the book and the crazy plot twist did catch me by surprise, almost blowing my mind as I read. I don't know if I'll reread this one in the future but I would definitely recommend it to all dystopian book lovers. Article Three is totally a game-changer to the dystopian genre as it includes different elements that make it a unique read in the ocean of cookie-cutter dystopian novels out there. 

You Can Purchase The Book Here:

About The Author:

I’ve always been a daydreamer. As a kid I wasn’t that interested in other children, I wanted to be left alone with my mind and let it tell me stories. Distant worlds and time travel were frequently reoccurring topics. I was usually the hero, with the occasional side-kick. Writing came naturally to me, as a way to try to catch the stories, and later on, to share those with the friends I did manage to get, despite being somewhat strange.

Adulthood didn’t stop the daydreaming, but it made me use less of it in my writing. Instead I wrote poetry and more conventional stories. Boring stories.

141208-AnnaJakobssonLund-124When I was pregnant with my second child I’d enough of them. I’d self-published one novel; a neat piece of relationship drama where nothing happened. I loved the characters but the plot was too slow. Writing, publishing and marketing were hard work, and if I was going to do it again it would not be with a boring story.

My brain rescued me by playing me a scene I’d first come up with as a teen. I knew that the street depicted was from the future, and that the boy getting beat up was on a quest to save his sister. I also had the idea that the girl saving him (who had been me in the original story, of course) was part of a resistance movement.

I ran with that, started writing and discovered the kind of writer’s high I hadn’t experienced since I was a kid. As I finished that first book (Article Three) more ideas kept entering my daydreams. Not just about the two other parts of what would be The System trilogy, but ideas that could be turned into short stories and new novels. My mind is as creative now that it has ever been, which is no small blessing for a mum of small children.

The wonderful thing about sci-fi and fantasy is that you don’t have to be tied down by norms and rules of the ordinary world.  You’re still able to address modern day issues, though. I try to use this in my writing by exploring themes that make the reader question his or her own views as well as society’s. I use characters that are not often depicted in main-stream literature. People I find interesting, who stretch our notion about what parts people usually play in literature. In my writing there’re no alpha-dogs and no damsels in distress. I’ve even declared my books love-triangle free. It sounds like a joke, but I want other things for my readers than the question about which hot guy the main character is going to choose at the end.

I’m an indie-publisher, which is equal parts funny and exhausting, and I have four novels published in Swedish. The idea to get my novels translated professionally and try to reach a larger audience is more than a little crazy, but as I started discussing it with fellow writers I couldn’t quite shake it. As I grow older I get increasingly less afraid, and also crazier, and I feel like I would be stupid not to follow my dreams when I have the chance.

Author Links:

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  1. When it comes to dystopians, I did find this one to be more a unique read and just what I needed while I was in a reading slump! I liked the simplicity and the straightforwardness of the world building too, so I am glad you could enjoy that element of it too. Great review, Anissa <3

    1. Aww thanks! I did love that this one just felt different from other dystopian novels, that genre can be quite bland and same-old-same-old so I was happy that this one stuck out to me :D