Tuesday, December 16, 2014


Rebellion.:The Tankborn series, #3 by Karen Sandler
Tu Books, 2014.  978-160060984-8   $19.95,  394p.

The Tankborn  (GENS) are those genetically modified humans who can receive special powers.  They are also various shades of brown to black.  And have tattoos on their face so you will be sure to understand that this is a slave.  The trueborns are a caste above, whiter in skin, with all the privileges. There is a caste system within each of these groups..

Kayla is a GEN, although originally trueborn.  Devak is trueborn, now moved down in the caste system to pay for his treatments after the bombing.  In the first two novels, they have fallen in love but separated by a bomb blast in the rebellion where each thinks the other is dead.  This last in the series brings the rebellion to a close in a satisfying, commanding tale.  While you probably want to read the first two, this last is so well scripted, extra reading isn’t necessary.

The parallels to our society are obvious.  What saves this from being stereotypical is the handling of the nuances within the caste system.  The political intrigue is spot on, and the creatures are fantastic:  bhimkays, for example- giant spiders that are trained for riding.  This is a very realistic and striking world.  The novel moves between the two stories, and each is totally intriguing. Well done by an adult fiction writer entering the YA field.  Hopefully more are coming.

While we would like to have had more romance, there is also a side romance between two of the "lowborn" boys in the rebellion.  Some kissing, a little cussing- and that in the language of the world- "those denking spiders..."

For readers 12 and up.

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