My Rating: 3 out of 5
Retra braves the intense pain of her obedience strip, and stows away to seek her brother Joel, gone two years for Ixion - island of ever-night, ever-youth and never-sleep. Retra is a Seal – sealed minds, sealed community - no craving for parties or pleasure.
What are the Night Creatures Retra can see in the shadows? What happens to those who grow too old for Ixion? Without Joel, is her eternal bond with a Riper guardian enough to save her?
Listen well, baby bats. Burn bright, but do not stray from the paths. Remember, when you live in a place of darkness you also live with creatures of the dark.
This book is trippy! I really don't know what to say about it. Well, I can start with the technical stuff. The writing was really choppy and disjointed. The world building was poorly done. There was so much to take in about Ixion, and it was not laid out for us as well as it could have been. But the idea of Ixion was great. I want to love this book more than I should because of what it could have been. I also found it interesting that at first I thought the world Retra was leaving was the dystopian one.
Retra lived in a walled city where elders decided who you could talk to, what you could listen to or read. The usual. When Retra's older brother Joel ran away to the secluded community, Ixion, her family was punished with whipping, shock treatment, and starvation. Pretty horrendous. So Retra went after him. She ran away to Ixion. It is an island for only the young, in perpetual night where the inhabitants party all the time. But it doesn't take Retra long to realize that Ixion has just as many secrets as the world she left, if not more.
The Guardians of Ixion are mysterious figures, tall and pale. I was trying to figure out what they were for most of the book. Vampires? Demons? But now I think they are a unique creation. They look like corpses and everyone is terrified of them even though they are Guardians, protectors. But Retra cant help but find Lenoir, the leader of the Guardians, beautiful.
"Retra stood as still as him, transfixed by his manner and look; the lustre of the black hair that framed his pale, flawless face. He was beautiful in a way Retra had never seen before. Unholy. (...) What did she know of men? And yet the drift of his long hair and his worldly sneer made her stomach clench with unwanted emotion."
In the same way that Tris in Divergent was from the quietest and most subservient of factions, Retra is from the most reserved and strict of all communities, yet she has uncommon courage that causes her to defend the weak on more than one occasion. She gets herself into a lot of trouble and Lenoir notices her. Of the thousands of people there, he remembers her, and he ends up saving her life twice. Which is completely unheard of. Guardians are not meant to mingle. Lenoir's intentions are extremely unclear. I dont even know what he is, so his action are hard to interpret. There are two rather hot scenes between Retra and Lenoir, but even then, I am not entirely sure what he was doing. Either way though, it was pretty hot. I wish there had been more between them. Although Lenoir was still kind of strange and suspicious, he has potential as an interesting character and as a love interest.
It takes a lot more than confusing writing to stop me from reading a series with such a unique world and premise. So I will be reading Angel Arias in the future and hoping to see more of Lenoir.