I grabbed a copy of HERO: THE HERO REBELLION BOOK 1 because the premise grabbed me. A human colony on a lonely planet. A girl who hears voices, her only friend a massive genetically-engineered leopard, and her quest for freedom, her quest for the truth.
I was really impressed by Crawford’s characters. Hero Regan is a great protagonist, engaging, and clever. Her struggles to fit in at the Cumulus City school, wanting nothing more than to be normal and have friends, is conveyed very well. Hero’s minders, Tybalt and the Lamb (Imogen Lambert) are also really great characters, you question their motives as Hero learns more and more about them, piecing the puzzle together of her own existence, and unravelling the webs of intrigue and deceit which go right back to the colonisation of the planet.
The world-building is excellent. The city floats above the surface of the planet, above the lethal pollen spores. Hero’s companion Fink is a ruc-pard, an animal containing genes of both an Earth leopard and a native animal. These genetically altered companions are very common, all the students at Cumulus City have them, and they come in all shapes and sizes. There are even illegal races through the city where people ride their companions, dodging traps and attacks from other contestants. Hero and Fink even compete in an exhilarating race, and it was one of the highlights of the book.
There are a lot of questions that are asked in this book. At school, Hero learns about an uncle she never knew she had, one of the famous street racers. What happened to him? Can Hero’s minders Imogen and Tybalt be trusted? Can her mum? Why do none of the adult seem to have companions? What dark webs are Hero and her family caught up in – and most importantly – can she break free?
HERO is a really intriguing book, and I can’t wait to find out what happens next in The Hero Rebellion!
- Originally published October 2019