Thunder by Bonnie S. Calhoun ~ YA Dystopian Romance Review

Stone Braide Chronicles, Book 1
Bonnie S. Calhoun
YA Dystopian Romance

The Time of Sorrows is long past.
The future of Selah and her people is shrouded in mystery.
And the clock is ticking.

Hidden in the tall grasses along a shore littered with the rusted metal remnants of a once-great city, a hunter crouches. It is the eve of her eighteenth Birth Remembrance and high time she proves to herself and her brothers that she can stand on her own two feet. Selah Rishon Chavez waits not for game but for one of the small boats that occasionally crash against the desolate shoreline. Because inside one of these boats she will find her quarry--a Lander.

These people from an unknown land across the ocean are highly prized by the Company and bring a good price--especially if they keep the markings they arrive with.

Everything falls to pieces when the Lander whom Selah catches is stolen by her brothers, and Selah wakes the next morning to find the Lander's distinctive mark has appeared on her own flesh. Once the hunter, Selah is now one of the hunted, and she knows only one person who can help her--Bodhi Locke, the Lander her brothers hope to sell in the Mountain.

With evocative descriptions of a strange new world that combines elements of disturbing scientific advances, devious political conspiracy, and survival in a hostile wilderness, Bonnie S. Calhoun weaves a captivating tale of a society more like our own than we may want to admit. From the tension-laced first scene to the captivating last page, Thunder is an epic journey into the heart of humankind that explores how far we are willing to go when we're pushed to the limit.

My Thoughts

Young Adult fiction is not something that I'm usually drawn to. Young Adult Dystopian Romance is nothing that I would have ever guessed that I would read. But let me tell you that I am so glad I did.

Bonnie Calhoun has put together a fast-paced thriller that changed my opinion of this genre entirely. The story is based in a post-apocalyptic America, the east coast to be specific. It has been 150 years since the great Sorrows struck and much of the surrounding area lays in ruins. 

There is a mysterious group known as the Landers that is being hunted for the bounty that is upon their heads. Bodhi Locke is one of those Landers and he finds himself imprisoned and heading to an unknown fate.

Shortly after Selah Chavez's eighteenth Birth Remembrance everything that Selah thought she knew about her life comes unraveled. To save her life she must run away from home and everyone she holds dear. The one person that can help her is Bodhi, but to gain his help she must first free him.

The reader is taken on a fascinating journey that flashes between locations and different groups of people. The story has a science fiction tone to it that adds to the mystery of what is going on. While this is definitely a romance, there is so much more to the story than the relationship between Selah and Bodhi. 

This would make a great read for teens. The primary character, Selah, is eighteen so some of the scenes are geared towards that age group. I don't think that I would recommend it for a tween, but I only say that because of the overall themes. There is nothing unsavory that goes on in this book. The characters are not promiscuous or racy. But there is definitely attraction and heart thumping romance going on between Selah and Bodhi. 

If you just aren't sure if you would like this book and series you're in luck. Bonnie has written a prequel novella entitled Tremors that is currently a free download for your favorite ereader. It is a great way to get a taste of the flavor of the novel. It gives background on the characters and how they got where they are and it also includes a portion of Thunder to really whet your appetite.

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