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Division of the Marked (The Marked Series Book 1) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 362 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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Orson Scott Card once said that books, fiction books, were divided into four different groups: those that focused on character, those that focused on a new world, those that focused on an event, and those that focused on an idea. This was a character book.
Every good character book needs some kind of tension for their characters, and this book provides them. Indeed two main tensions. Well, no, three:
1) First of all there is the 'wow, I have suddenly become a whole different person than I thought I was going to be growing up. I am suddenly 'marked', have magical powers, and have to become one of two different groups, very antagonistic, living miles apart.
2) I suddenly have a very deep relationship with several new people, including a sexual interest, and our relationships get torn about by the above mentioned two groups.
3) Someone is killing a bunch of people. Our kind of people. Needs to be stopped.
The author handles each of these tensions pretty well. The very annoying ten year gap in the story is a cheat: designed to keep the reader's mind on the 'how we felt about each other when we got broken up', and pass lightly over the (relatively important) new idea that 'we are part of two separate groups the hate each other' without having to actually explain why these two groups hate each other… or what most of them do most of the time anyway.
But the ten year gap works for that. If the author, or the reader, doesn't want to do the hard work of living through (or writing through or reading through) that ten year gap while the tension rises even while the nostalgic 'remember who we were then' fails to fade… then one needs a ten year gap.
But my problem with this book is I happen to like books that actually explain the world, and where the world makes sense. And this book, and this world, do not. Two groups which can fight extremely well due to the above mentioned magical powers: cool. These two groups in a world where no fighting goes on? Weird.
So, anyway, I want to see in the ten year gap, and I want to learn about the world. Oh, and I hate this whole 'sacrifice' thing. Go on a quest and do great things, cool. Condemn to non-existence your potential family? Not at all cool.