My rating: 3 of 5 stars
*** 3.5 Cranky Stars ***
Set in a dystopian world, after what I’ll term a “plague”, but is so much more, The Cross picks up where Escape left off. Our group is in danger and other players enter the fray.
More revelations come to light about how the world came to be and the kind of forces our group is facing.
I read The Cross in virtually one sitting, inhaling it, and trying to get the answers that were left hanging in Escape. Hardison’s melancholy prose and slow reveal of the horrors of the past.
This series is written in multiple points of view, which is both a strength and a weakness. It has an overarching plot – a big one – and some interesting subplots.
The main issue with The Cross is that it suffers from Book Two syndrome in a series, where events from Book One are not really advanced. We get new information, but I was itching to know more, and a lot of the threads from Escape were not addressed in The Cross.
As the work is told in multiple points of view, we get different interpretations of the same event just from different characters. It was as if the narrative began to eat itself and I felt more use could have been made in advancing the plot along.
In saying that, there are so many things I like about this series. I love the characters have the gift of kindness and are willing to self-sacrifice for one another in a horrible world. Although, to be fair, I do sometimes wonder if the characters have a lick of survival instinct and seem to be willing to throw their lives away in acts of small sacrifices.
Their heroism, however, sense of friendship and bonds are admirable. It’s one of my favourite aspects of the series - characters who cling to the light, rather than just throwing it all into darkness.
Inna Hardison is a talented writer and I have enjoyed this series very much. I am about to start Legacy and I cannot wait.
I know the rating of my review is what it is, but I cannot urge people enough, especially those who enjoy dystopian series, to pick this up and give it a try.
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