Fifty years ago the Commander came into power and murdered all who opposed him. In his warped mind, the seven deadly sins were the downfall of society. He created the Hole where sinners are branded according to their sins and might survive a few years. At best.
Now LUST wraps around my neck like blue fingers strangling me. I’ve been accused of a crime I didn’t commit and now the Hole is my new home.
Darkness. Death. Violence. Pain.
Now every day is a fight for survival. But I won’t die. I won’t let them win.
The Hole can’t keep me. The Hole can’t break me.
I am more than my brand. I’m a fighter.
My name is Lexi Hamilton, and this is my story.
Branded starts by instantly dropping you into the action. The opening grabs your attention and promises to be gripping and engrossing. The book doesn’t let down on the expectations built at the start. I was intrigued by the dystopian world of this book; Crimes are categorised by which of the seven deadly sins they fit under and anyone accused is instantly assumed guilty and thrown into a giant community/prison known as the hole without trial.
Branded is full of action, emotion and thrilling forbidden romance. As the sin Lexi has been deemed guilty of is Lust, life in the hole is incredible risky for her; those branded with Lust are usually the quickest to die. Lexi is such a caring character, even in the dog eat dog world of the Hole she cares more about others who are suffering than herself. On top of her sympathetic nature she is also strong minded and tough. She won’t let herself be beaten down, mentally or physically, and she stays strong despite all that she goes through
The chemistry between Lexi and Cole was palpable and yet a relationship between them would lead to death for both. This adds another layer of tension to a story that will already have you biting your nails. Despite the book being YA, the authors aren’t afraid to show the gory, dark and sometimes sexy moments.I really loved the world in Branded; it is almost a dictatorship where no one can speak up to defend themselves or others. This allowed for moments where the book really makes you think and feel for the characters. All this is balanced out by fighting, action and romance; think a sort of mixture of The Hunger Games and Divergent.
Reading Branded you would never be able to guess that it is written by two authors. Everything is well written and the writing style remains the same throughout. If you are dystopian fan then this is a must read, especially if you like books that equally balance action with romance. I would definitely recommend this book as it has something for everyone.
*I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review, this has not affected my opinions or rating in any way*
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