Blurb: How far would you go in the fight for your country’s freedom when it’s crumbling from within?
In the near future, all seventeen-year-old Vivica Wilkins wants is a normal life. Time with her boyfriend, her computer, sports. But after becoming a fugitive, the only place she’ll be safe is among the enemies of the government. She has no choice but to join the Emancipation Warriors, the only hope for the United Regions of North America to return to the country it once was.
When her mother is taken as a political prisoner and slated for execution, the Emancipation Warriors change Vivica’s appearance, identity—everything. With her vaunted computer hacking skills, she’s able to infiltrate the government with a job that gives the Warriors a foothold in their fight for freedom and the chance to save her mother.
But soon Vivica is discovered, and her only chance of escape is to become allies with one of her greatest enemies. Together they must follow the government’s trail of evil to its highest levels, where they learn not only the future of their country is at stake, but the entire world.
From the cities of the United Regions of North America to the high-tech corridors of Asia, The Liberation is an international thriller with an all-too-possible scenario that will grab you by the throat and refuse to let go.
The Liberation by Marissa Shrock is book 2 in the Emancipation Warriors series. I read this without having read #1 and wasn’t very confused although the events referenced made me curious about the first book. It did take me a while to sort out the characters, especially when they kept going by aliases, their real names, and then also referring to each other by code-names. Apparently in the first volume, Vivica ran away from home and sought asylum with the Emancipation Warriors in order to save her baby. You see, in this futuristic authoritarian USA-ish land, illegal teenage pregnancies result in mandatory abortions. She’s a master hacker and helps the Warriors out during her pregnancy and ends up finding God through them. At the end, her boyfriend/baby-daddy ends up in prison and Vivica joins the Emancipation Warriors to rescue him and participate in the rebellion. The Liberation begins with Vivica arriving at a secret training compound, determined to become an amazing agent asap. Only things happen and she ends up launched into the world of high-tech espionage almost immediately.
The world in this series is futuristic with chips, retinal scanners, nanobots, facial recognition cameras everywhere and so on. And it’s also one that could be a somewhat realistic dystopian future with a Bible sanitized to be more “inclusive”, Christians oppressed for their beliefs, mandatory abortions for unplanned pregnancies, the world moving toward a one-world-order, etc. The pace was exciting and I was constantly terrified something bad was going to happen – I read it quickly because of this. But the book stretched the bounds of believability for me. Vivica is 17, has almost no training, and yet manages to successfully go undercover in extremely dangerous situations and fools nearly everyone. The timeline was confusing – I could swear the book would say a few weeks went by but then it would say the next day and I never knew how much time had passed. Which meant sometimes I’d be incredulously wondering how they implemented a plan so quickly but maybe it wasn’t as quick as I thought? Even with all that, I’d still be planning to read the 3rd of the trilogy if it weren’t for the following:
The writing was too sparse for me. If you dislike details, this is the book series for you. I never knew where anyone was – if they were standing, sitting, hovering over a shoulder, (floating? /s 😉 ) or on the other side of the room. Things would happen or be said and I wouldn’t understand what led to it. Or something would get mentioned and dropped and I’d wonder if it was wrapped up or not. And I’m still unclear how old most of the characters are aside from Vivica. There’s an obvious love interest and all I know is “it’s not like he’s 40”. So he could be anywhere from 23-35. But if he’s too young, I wouldn’t believe he could be such a high-ranking rebel agent – so I don’t know how I feel about him liking an almost-18-year-old. Or why he even likes her for that matter – they rarely saw each other and when they did, they just pettily bickered.
All that being said, though, I think this series would be a hit with the targeted age group of teenage readers. It just had elements that didn’t work for me personally.
How much realism and detail do you like in a story?
Disclosure of Material Connection: I have not received any compensation for writing this post. I have no material connection to the brands, products, or services that I have mentioned. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.