Tuesday, April 4, 2017
New Review! Dysphoria and Grace by Christina L. Rozelle, 4 Cranky Stars
Dysphoria and Grace by Christina L. Rozelle
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
**** 4 Cranky Stars ****
This book had been given to me in exchange for an honest review. I agreed to read and review it without an aid of a blurb mainly because it had been written by Christina Rozelle and I had enjoyed her previous work immensely. I looked at the cover of this one and said “Cool, a zombie book. This should be good.”
That had been my mistake. Mistake not because I agreed to read a Rozelle book but mistake because I didn’t read the blurb and completely missed all the warnings attached to it. For this book is very dark. Very well written but contains very dark and mature content. I don’t read dark contents as a rule.
Having said that, I read this one in 2 sittings, would have been at one go if I timed it correctly. It is a fast read and disturbingly compelling.
We meet Grace. She’s 19, adopted by a loving couple when she was younger, now a college student, rebellious, does drugs, shoplifts, carries firearms, practices witchcraft and generally fed up with her life. She’s the symbol of the word “dysphoria” which is the opposite of euphoria. She changed her name to Ophelia when she started her craft.
She also has a best friend named Lucy who changed her name to Eve for the craft. Together, we follow them in a New America where crime is so rife that the government forced a mandate for over 21s to submit to “mood” controlling injections as a last attempt to solve the uncontrollable problem.
This is difficult for me to review since it’s not usually a genre I follow. The writing, as always with a Rozelle book, is impeccable. No errors that I saw. The pacing of the story is good. The characters had been described in detail and true to their purpose in the story.
Should I split this story into sections: as a horror story, it’s quite good. The transition from normal people into infected had been described very well and timely from inoculation to signs and symptoms until full-blown infection. The gore as expected from zombie books had been tastefully done (pun intended). The adrenaline inducing scenes very well executed.
As an erotica, there were moments where I had to take my hat off to Miss Rozelle for moving on to new adult from her previous work so seamlessly. The erotic scenes were well-written and even romanticised enough to pull at the heart strings.
As a dark material, the drug use had been described to perfection that could only be attributed to personal experience or out of this world researching skills. The sexual abuse thrown in thankfully had been elegantly implied rather than explicit in nature.
Had I known the content prior to reading, I would have prepared myself mentally and emotionally to the onslaught brought by the story and maybe I would have appreciated it a bit more. But that’s entirely my fault and not of the author since she had specifically added warnings to the blurb.
I’m awarding 4 stars to the book itself for what it stood for even though I derived no pleasure in reading it. This is just not for me but would be a great read for those who follow this genre.
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