Rating: 3.5 Stars
~ ~ ~Review: Lisa T. Bergren has taken readers on an array of adventures - from time travel in medieval Italy to a European Grand Tour. "Remnants: Season of Wonder" embarks on a brand new journey, this time in the distant future. As a dystopian novel, the plot has the expected danger, fighting, and action sequences. There are few, if any, dull moments of the story, which is definitely a continuous journey for the characters and readers. The characters spend the entire novel traversing a variety of climates and landscapes with the goal of reaching the enemy territory of Pacifica and saving a Ailtith brother. I was never bored by the plot with so many scene changes and enemies lurking around every corner; but when I reached the end, I felt no closure on an expedition which had clearly not reached its destination. The Ailith will certainly face more adversity in upcoming novels, and Bergren leaves readers speculating what grave dangers will emerge and how the Ailith will fulfill their calling.
Among the lingering questions is Andrianna's relationships and her gift to read and feel emotions. Andrianna's "high gift" has already attracted the attention of the evil factions, and her struggle to block out the darkness seems to foreshadow future trouble. Her forbidden attraction to her knight, Ronan, creates some romantic tension. Andrianna is warned a few times that love can be used as a weapon. While I have little doubt that Andrianna's love for Ronan will find fulfillment, I suspect that Bergren has set the stage for struggles along the way that will pull them apart. It strikes me as odd that none of the other members of the Ailith group are attracted to each other. The Ailith characters all have their own distinct personalities and gifts, and the relationship between the Remnants and the knights seems to walk a fine line between brotherly love and romantic love. Each character brings a different dynamic to the group. After an exciting ending, we are left unsure about the fates of some of the Ailiths and their leader.
"Season of Wonder" had me wondering and wandering. I enjoyed the action, but the characters' journeys were more physical than emotional. "Season of Wonder" feels more like a build-up to the series, and it doesn't seem that many of the events in the first half of the plot will impact the future novel. There isn't much background on the Ailith group and the established group of elders, and most of the significant events occurred in the novel's second half. At the novel's conclusion, the real adventure feels like it is just on the brink of beginning, leaving me with enough interest to await the next installment of the series.
I received a complimentary e-copy of this book from Zondervan through Net Galley. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed above are my own. 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.
Summary from Zondervan: In the first book of the new futuristic dystopian series from author Lisa T. Bergren, the chosen remnants must work to redirect humanity’s course.
THEIR ARRIVAL WAS FORETOLD FOR YEARS….
Andriana is a Remnant, gifted as an empath and one of the Ailith, destined to act as humanity’s last shield against the horrors that now plague those who remain.
After years of training in stealth and warfare, Andriana and her Knight protector, Ronan, are finally ready to answer the Call and begin the life they were designed for. But as they embark with the other Remnants on the first of their assignments, they quickly discover that the world beyond their protected Valley is more dangerous than they imagined.The Sons of Sheol will stop at nothing to prevent Dri and Ronan from rescuing anyone sympathetic to the Remnants’ cause. And as the Remnants battle the demonic forces, still other enemies close in. Dangers intensity, but so do Dri’s feelings for Ronan–the one emotion she is not meant to feel. In the midst of their mission, Andriana must fine a way to master her feelings. Or risk compromising everything…