Sunday, 5 June 2016

Riders by Veronica Rossi - Review

Publisher: Tor Teen (16 Feb. 2016)

For eighteen-year-old Gideon Blake, nothing but death can keep him from achieving his goal of becoming a U.S. Army Ranger. As it turns out, it does.

Recovering from the accident that most definitely killed him, Gideon finds himself with strange new powers and a bizarre cuff he can't remove. His death has brought to life his real destiny. He has become War, one of the legendary four horsemen of the apocalypse.

Over the coming weeks, he and the other horsemen--Conquest, Famine, and Death--are brought together by a beautiful but frustratingly secretive girl to help save humanity from an ancient evil on the emergence. They fail.

Now--bound, bloodied, and drugged--Gideon is interrogated by the authorities about his role in a battle that has become an international incident. If he stands any chance of saving his friends and the girl he's fallen for--not to mention all of humankind--he needs to convince the skeptical government officials the world is in imminent danger. But will anyone believe him? (Publishers' Blurb)

'Under the Never Sky' is one of my favourite YA series of all time - a fantastically original dystopian with a beautiful love story. This meant I was super excited about Riders and I enjoyed it just as much as I hoped I would. 

The premise of a teen becoming one of the four horseman of the apocalypse was really unique and executed well. I enjoyed seeing Gideon and the other characters coming into their powers and thought the creatures they encountered were super creative. The big bads were also suitably scary and the plot conflict gathered speed and went off with a bang.

Another thing I loved was Gideon as a narrator. I love male narrators in YA and it's rarer than I'd like in this type of book. I also know very little about the mindset of wanting to go away to war and it was interesting to get inside Gideon's head. The love story involving him was sweet but not overpowering. It unfolded naturally from the story rather than being crowbarred in. 

The only aspect I was less keen on was that the structure of collecting the other chosen ones felt a little familiar, in a sort of cross between Percy Jackson and the Avengers. 

This is a really promising duology and I'm looking forward to the next book!

If you liked the sound of this, now try these:

-Under the Never Sky (also by Veronica Rossi)
-The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness
-Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief

You should also watch Buffy the Vampire Slayer (because it's relevant but also because I take any opportunity to recommend it.)

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