I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Published by Random House on 24th April 2014
The Fearless. An army, powered by an incredible new serum that makes each soldier stronger, sharper, faster than their enemies. Intended as a force for good, the serum has a terrible side-effect - anyone who takes it is stripped of all humanity, empathy, love. And as the Fearless sweep through the country, forcing the serum on anyone in their path, society becomes a living nightmare.
Cass remembers the night they passed through her village. Her father was Altered. Her mother died soon after. All Cass has left is her little brother - and when Jori is snatched by the Fearless and taken to their hellish lair, Cass must risk everything to get him back.
I absolutely loved ACID, so when I had the chance to pick up The Fearless early, I knew I had to do it. The Fearless took everything I loved about ACID and dropped it into a new world that left me slightly terrified at times when I was reading.
I loved Cass’ character. I honestly didn’t expect to at first, but there was this odd blend of strength, independence and vulnerability about her that made her endearing and just a very real character to read about. Her desperation to get Jori back from the Fearless was so well written – I could practically feel the emotion oozing off the pages. She wasn’t afraid of hard work either – nothing was too much for her if it meant saving the ones that she loved. Cass also found herself stuck between two boys when she least expected it, although she was never torn in her decision and didn’t lead either Sol or Myo on, which made a nice change! The dynamic between Cass and Myo was great as it blossomed somewhat normally. They were two teens thrown together by chance, but there’s a connection between them that they cannot deny. Sol was never right for Cass – he just wasn’t right full stop. His bloodthirsty attitude was unnerving and I found it very difficult to see him as anything but a crazed maniac with a gun and some explosives.
The world in The Fearless is terrifying. I started reading the book in the dark and had to stop as I was so creeped out over what was happening in the book. It has this traumatising beginning and there’s very few happy moments, which just adds to the bleak world Pass created. And it’s such a clever idea, a drug that was created to stop soldiers suffering PTSD that ends up draining fear out of them and made them into incredibly strong, incredibly dangerous, soulless machines. And then there’s Hope Island, this supposed ‘safe haven’ that is more corrupt than you think, and it’s clear that there’s very few people you can trust in this world.
Emma Pass has proved with both ACID and The Fearless that she is extremely adept at crafting both strong female characters and these bleak worlds that I most definitely do not want to live in. I am certainly a huge fan of her work and cannot wait to see what she has in store for us next!