It's not very often that I'll go onto Goodreads and see a book with as high of a rating as this one. Right now it's 4.60 stars, and considering how much some people like to complain on there, I'd say that's extremely impressive. Honestly, it's not very hard for me to see why. I haven't completely finished reading this book yet, but that has absolutely to do with it's quality. This book is incredible, and I hope you can see why.
Belligerent by B.N. Mauldin
In a dystopian future the populace is segregated into castes. Belligerents, the lowest of status, are comprised of criminals and outcasts. Content as a faceless Commoner, Ryan has made a life for himself on the streets as a car thief. While the work isn’t the most noble, he’s known as one of the best despite his young age.
Ryan’s skills catch the eye of a flagrant Owner, bent on winning the virtual competition: Vicara. Newly branded as a Belligerent, Ryan struggles for freedom and acceptance at an academy specialized in training teams for Vicara. Ryan’s place on the team is shaky as he learns the truth and tragedy behind the person he replaces.
Join the Belligerents as we get our first look into the world of Vicara!
My ThoughtsNo, I have not completely finished this book yet, and no, I'm not going to lie to you and pretend that I have. Though, I suppose if that was ever my intention, then I really shouldn't have admitted that first part to you. Anyway, Belligerent is incredible so far. The dynamics of this dystopian world are really interesting, especially the class structure. I liked how you could see the different opinions people had of the Belligerents, and how they changed with time. When Ryan was younger, he thought it would be the coolest thing ever to be able to compete in the Vicara Games, but now all he wants to do is get out of them because he sees Belligerents for what they really are: slaves. Sure, a few of them may gain the status of wealthy celebrities every year, but up until that point, their freedom is the very last thing they have control over.
Speaking of those Belligerents, I really like Ryan's team. Meeting them has been my favorite part of the novel so far, and they are always the easiest characters for me to identify. They're all so different and obviously became Belligerents in different manners, yet their differences are probably the very reason they work so well together. They all need each other in some fashion, and I love the family dynamic that B.N. Mauldin created with them. I guess I'll just have to wait and see what happens to them next!
I don't like to give official ratings for my first thoughts of a novel because I don't want to judge it too early, but this one has definitely been 5-star quality so far!