1/27/15

Review of KINDREDS, AN ALLIANCE OF BLOODS by Tani Mura

KINDREDS,  AN ALLIANCE OF BLOODS by Tani Mura

This is an excellent, well-written, and engaging story worthy of a five star rating.
The author did a fantastic job fleshing out the characters in this story, as well as
creating an elaborate, dystopian world. I would highly recommend this story to
readers who enjoyed the Hunger Games or Divergent Series.

KINDREDS revolves around three main characters, Raine, Leif, and Jem. Raine
and Jem are preparing for their Confirmation trial to become an Askari. In their
society, people are either assigned the role of Walidah, Askari, or Cultivator.
A Walidah is a breeder, responsible for populating the town.  The Askari are the
fighters. The stronger men usually pick the Askari position, whereas the weaker
men usually choose the Cultivator position, working the fields and raising the
livestock.

In the Outer Rims, there is no socioeconomic structure, no family nucleus, and the
people live simplistic lives.
Raine is the only female to ever try out to be an Askari.  She knows she doesn't
possess the physical strength as her male counterparts, but instead, she relies on
her opponent's weaknesses, as well as her speed and agility. The trials have been
made more difficult in an effort for Raine to fail.
Even when Raine is pushed into a position that completely goes against her moral
fiber, she knows she must perform the task required or she will fail.
Even though Raine succeeds in becoming the first female Askari, her problems
are far from over. Wolfe, a fellow Askari fighter, is a villain you love to hate. He's
a mean, conniving bully still smarting over Raine besting him during a challenge.
Wolfe and his three friends gang up on Raine to teach her lesson, but luckily, her
friend Jem comes to her aid in time.

Unfortunately, Wolfe and his goons are relentless. They wait for an opportunity to
pounce on Raine when Jem isn't around.
Jem has a light-hearted, charming demeanor. He's completely loyal to his friends,
Raine and Leif. When he discovers that Raine has been badly beaten and was
almost raped by Wolfe and his three friends, Jem seeks retribution.

The tension continues to escalate as Wolfe remains an adversary intent on killing
Raine and Jem.  Although Leif would love to help his friends, his frail strength
and lack of courage leave him watching helplessly as Wolfe and his friends gang
up against Jem, and beat him to a bloody pulp.

If this wasn't enough tension and drama to keep you turning the pages, the author
opens the net so much further as strange people with different colored skin and
features appear to whisk Leif, Jem, and Raine away to a world that they didn't
even know existed.

As they are escorted to this new world, Nuemri, they learn that there are four
different races: Lumenae, Eousae, Noctae, and Aspirants. 
In this world, there are portals, guns, advanced technologies. The government
controls the weather and uses the rain, mixed with chemicals, to subdue the
population. They also brainwash the soldiers by making them take potions on a
regular basis.

In Nuemri, the races must remain separate. Ironically, the king and his family
originate from mixed blood races, asserting that only royalty can unite the
kingdom because of the blood shared with all his people. Anyone else caught
interacting or having a relationship will be executed immediately. 
Raine, Jem, and Lief learn that they are from mixed blood and are referred to as
Kindreds. Raine is the only person that actually possesses all four bloods in her
system.  The group of people that saved them are known as the Resistance.
The Resistance plan on overtaking the current government and have retrieved
Raine, Jem, and Lief to help implement their plans. Instead of being happy that
they're essentially the "chosen ones", Raine and her friends are upset. They don't
like that they've been taken from the familiarity of the home they know.

Even though Raine, Jem, and Leif reluctantly agree to help, they don't feel it's
their responsibility to fight for a country that they don't really belong to, and find
themselves missing the simplicity of their former lives.
As a revolution unfolds, the author forces Raine to undergo difficult situations.
Sacrifices are made, lives are lost, and people will go to the extreme as they fight
for power and control.

This was such a great story. The author packed so much detail and information
into this story. It is full of drama and tension. I would highly recommend this
story and eagerly await the second installment of this series.

5tsars
Rebecca Trust

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