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Follow the Author
Population: a dark post-apocalyptic alien romance (Population Book 1) Kindle Edition
★★★★★ "A mutha f'n MUST READ!!! Okay...okay..this author is new to me, but let me tell all readers....she is the mutha f'n bomb! This book...I have no words to describe how titillating this read was...Kane is my MCE!! Yasss babe!!!!" Amazon Reviewer
★★★★★ "Population was an amazing read! I highly recommended if you enjoy a novel with a strong heroine." World of Diversity Fiction Review
★★★★★ "Dystopian goodness! Around every single corner is trouble... This is a thrill ride from start to finish that you need to hop on." The Urban Paranormal Book Blog
★★★★★ "American author Elizabeth Stephens is an emerging new voice in speculative fiction...she has created a real, virtual page-turner!" The British Blacklist
From the Author
- ASIN : B07PS7TZTT
- Publication date : March 16, 2019
- Language : English
- File size : 2987 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 337 pages
- Page numbers source ISBN : 0999130579
- Lending : Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #36,954 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Reviews with images
Top reviews from the United States
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I loved the strong female lead, Abel, her African and Spanish genetics, her ability with the sword and hand to hand fighting, her determination, and her emotional strength. I loved Kane, who is complex but honorable. The world-building was good and something I haven’t seen before. I enjoyed the “Others”. The pacing was good, most of the time, and there were some great action scenes. There was a good dose of violence, but it wasn’t described in gory detail. You can cut someone’s head off with a sword without describing blood sprays and such.
There is a cliffhanger ending, but the sequel is out. It’s basically one book split into two parts. I definitely want to read the next one, but I hate this modern tendency of splitting books. “The Stand” is hugely long but is one book!
Child molestation and rape is hinted at in some parts but not seen directly.
This is M/F. No cheating. No love triangle. It is written in 1st person pretense tense. I find this much less jarring than 3rd close present tense.
There are basically two sex scenes. They aren’t graphic but rather camera obscura. They lack detail, so the words could be taken to mean more or less depending on the reader. For example:
"I tear his belt free and kick his pants off with my feet, then I tease him with my fingers and then again with my lips."
What is meant by this? Exactly where her fingers and lips go is up for interpretation.
Grammar and spelling: I found 13 errors in Population, including missing words, wrong words, and repeated words or phrases. Not bad at all. This is aside from the routinely missing commas between two independent clauses, missing commas after introductory clauses, and extreme run-on sentences that I have accepted as the author’s style of writing. This is fiction, not academia, so the rules are less rigid. I found this style distracting because my brain shouted “error” frequently, and the run-on sentences were confusing at times.
Unrealistic Timing: Abel is seriously hurt after the forest cult part in the beginning but seems mostly recovered 1-2 days later. She has never worn heels, wears and dances is stilettos for 48 hours, and no mention is made about swollen ankles or legs. There is definitely some almost instalove. It happens pretty fast. But I’m okay with it.
Confusion: Earlier in the book, Abel talks about having been raped or was it attempted rape that was thwarted? I thought two of a gang had actually succeeded until the second sex scene when blood is obliquely mentioned twice along with some pain. If she wasn’t a virgin, where do the pain and blood come from? At the least, it’s unclear. At most, there is a contradiction.
There were times when the story got too close to familiar fairytales. There was some “Beauty and the Beast” when Abel first gets to Kane’s estate and some “Cinderella” with the ball preparation.
I would have given this 4 stars, but the aforementioned problems drop it to a 3 for me. I will be reading the second half of this ONE book.
I'm the first to like a good paranormal/action/romance but trust and love have to be earned, especially when writing about war or post apocalyptic events. I wish authors, both male and female, would remain true to the nature of these settings and events. Women and men, boys and girls react similarly in war. Some can't handle it and break down and some learn to find inner strength and become fighters and leaders. If you are going to write about a young woman who is a fighter then be consistent with that narrative. If they make a mistake indecision making, then make it a realistic one and show that thought process and how they learned from it or else the fact that they have survived that log does not seem realistic. Lastly, if they do find a relationship, then make it well earned. It is hard to trust anyone in this world after a devastating war, so to have the heroine and have her thrown off by someone's good looks just diminishes the heroine.
If you look at another book with a young heroine who is a fighter, for example, you can see how not to diminish a female lead. The book Hunger Games was so great because you could see that Katniss (the heroine) was tough, you leaned what forced Katniss to be tough, and you saw that she kept her focus even when there was the chance for love. You saw that while it may have crossed her mind that she had a chance for love, the more important thing was just to keep her family safe., and she was the one to do that.
No I don't expect every book with a young female lead to be like the Hunger Games. In fact it's great that other interesting stories with dynamic women are out there. I ended up giving this book 4 stars because the premise was a good one, and the story flowed pretty well. I just wish more care was taken with developing the female lead, and clarifying how her trust and love were earned. That being said, I will go on to read the next book in the series. I think it was a good first book by this author.
Top reviews from other countries
This is the first book in a continuing series. Though there is a hideous cliffhanger the next book is already available.
I really love a good dystopian story and this one is really good. It starts with Abel, Beck and Beck’s daughter Ashlynn running, hiding and scavenging, right on the limit of survival as they hunt for food and shelter whilst avoiding the gangs. Every moment brings danger and the possibility of death. The end of life as we know it happened when aliens came to Earth. The Others brought the end of civilisation and the beginning of war and suffering.
Abel’s sole purpose is to keep Beck and Ashlynn safe, she is the strong and brutal member of their party, Beck the brains and little Ashlynn is the heart. When Ashlynn is stolen by the victor in a fight between Others, she vows to get her back. The defeated Other lies dying so she steals his sword and, in an unusual moment of sympathy, hides him somewhere he can die in peace, never realising that Others don’t die so easily as humans.
This is the start of a strange partnership with Abel and Kane, as she tries to find Ashlynn, even if Abel doesn’t trust Kane as far as she can throw him, she finds that she needs him to survive.
I really liked the world-building in this book. It starts off so confused like the world in which they live. It’s a very slow journey to understanding the state of the world and how it got there, for both us and Abel. The author conveys the sense of hopelessness and fear really well.
Abel is a really interesting character. She’s came into adulthood after The Other arrived and has learnt that from hope and emotional connection comes nothing but pain and suffering so she tries to hard to stay hard and emotionless, but often fails. She’s lost everyone she’s ever loved and is severely traumatised by her existence. She’s used to living life on a hair trigger where violence can erupt at any second and nowhere is safe. Despite all of that she has moment of ‘weakness’ where she is kind, even knowing it could be the end of her life.
Kane is an enigma. He is one of The Others and as such is unknowable to Abel. He is a literal alien species and nothing was really told to the outside world before government and media disappeared. Despite his circumstances when Abel meets him, he has a sense of humour and is gentle with her. He is also protective. It is only when we are in the latter stages of the book do we start to really see Kane as he is and not just through Abel’s traumatised eyes. We only see him clearly when she does.
The plot is cleverly built. It starts with the hunt for Ashlynn and slowly evolves in other directions. The romance sneaks up on us as much as it does Abel. The pacing is excellent and kept me reading faster and faster as I worked my way through the chapters.
I really want to read the second book in the series now. I’d better download it immediately so I can find out what happens to them all!
The beginning of the story I found was the best as, despite it being dystopian/ sci fi or post - apocalyptic it had it's own unique thrill. The middle however seemed a little cliché.