Dark Life

Dark Life
(Dark Life #1)
by Kat Falls
performed by Keith Nobbs
Published 2010 by Scholastic Audio
7 hours, 5 minutes. Unabridged.
Rating: 5/5

In the near future, the seas have risen and flooded the land and humans must live packed into stack cities. The only ones with any space of their own are those who live on the ocean floor, the Dark Life. Ty has spent his whole life living deep undersea, helping his family farm the ocean floor. But when outlaws attack his homestead, Ty finds himself in a fight to save the only home he has ever known. Joined by Gemma, a girl from the Topside who has come subsea to look for her brother, Ty ventures into the frontier’s rough underworld and discovers some dark secrets to Dark Life… secrets that threaten to destroy everything.

Let me begin by saying that I absolutely loved this book. The second I started listening I was devoted 100% to this story. It’s such an original story with the most interesting and fast-paced plot I’ve come across all year. I’m absolutely ecstatic for the next book in the series to come out. I can’t wait to read it!

Ty is one of those male protagonists that I’ve started to love. I’m not sure what it is about guys, but it is so refreshing to read a book from a male perspective. Ty is a really strong character with the heart of a warrior. He’ll do anything and everything in his power to protect his home, his family, and his secrets. Gemma, the Topsider tough girl, also earns his devotion after she shows up on the scene. The two of them make a great team and I’m excited to see what happens with them next. I want to rejoice in the depth of the characters in this book. Nothing is ever quite as it seems. There are reasons the characters are the way they are and do the things they do. Even the Sea Blight Gang will surprise you with their motives, though it won’t make them much less bloodthirsty and terrifying.

Oh, the suspense! I was nearly jumping up and down with anticipation at the climax of this book. Nothing says “good book” like the ability to make me truly uncomfortable with a situation. There was no mistaking my feelings toward the end of the book. I HAD to know what happened. Nothing could have torn me from that book at that point. I was also impressed by Falls connection of the plot with the character relationships. Like I said before, everything the characters do has a reason, and usually a very specific reason. I found myself shocked by some of the things uncovered about the characters in the book. I truly believe every single word in this book was carefully thought out, and the work crafted to perfection. The pieces just pit together so perfectly and created a story that twists into something I never could have guessed in the beginning.

Clear and concise writing is important in a book with so many plot twists and so much suspense. Falls does a great job. She gets every point across and easily incorporates a question of ethics as a central theme. (I guess I should say that my discussion of the theme might be spoiler-ish. Here’s your warning!) Are the settlers with Dark Gifts normal and heathy? Should they not have all the same rights (like the right to refuse medical research) as everyone else? These questions are right under the surface of the story, though it takes quite a while before anyone ever asks it. No answer is really given, which, no doubt, means the issue will be touched on again in the next book.

A great dystopian novel, this book takes a look at the secrets of the government and discovers some pretty ugly things. I can’t wait for more of this to be uncovered. I have no doubt the Emergency Government system they’re under has even more up its sleeve and way more skeletons in its closet.

Before I conclude my review, let me give Keith Nobbs the credit he is due. He was an excellent narrator, one of the best I’ve come across yet. I’ll have to put his name on my list of favorites and see what other books he’s read that I might like to listen to.

Please, consider this book highly recommended by me. It’s become an instant favorite and I have no doubt most of you will enjoy it as well. Be prepared. You will be in awe with the descriptions of the ocean one moment, and sitting on the edge of your seat in suspense the next.

Source: Homewood Public Library. Homewood, AL
Purchase this book: Scholastic Audio | Book Depository | IndieBound | Audible

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    Some of the books reviewed on this blog were sent to me by the author or publisher for review. I did not receive any payment in exchange for the review nor was I obligated to write a positive one. All opinions expressed here are entirely my own and may not necessarily agree with those of the author, the book's publisher and publicist or the readers of these reviews. This disclosure is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255, Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.
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