Warnings: violence, death, mild swearing
Author: Ryan Graudin
‘Once upon a different time, there was a girl who lived in a kingdom of death. Wolves howled up her arm. A whole pack of them – made of tattoo and pain, memory and loss. It was the only thing about her that ever stayed the same.
Germany, 1956. Over ten years since the Nazis won the war.
Seventeen year old Yael is part of the resistance, and she has just one mission: to kill Hitler.
But first, she’s got to get close enough to do it.’
I need the rest of this series in my hands right now.
I loved Yael as a character, not only was she confident, capable and everything I wish I could be, she wasn’t whiny like she had the potential to be. You also get to know the characters that Yael’s wolves represent, even though they aren’t in the story in the present. Luka, one of the opponents you get to know the most, was
very attractive a very interesting character with lots of different layers to him, and I’m looking forward to seeing him the most in the next book.
Speaking of the wolves, you get to know the stories of Yael’s past through semi-flashbacks, instead of the cold main character spilling her guts and then inevitably having that information used against her later in the book, leading to the collapse of her carefully constructed plan and destroying her emotionally.
The storyline was unlike anything I’d read before and kept me captivated throughout the whole book because of the constant threat of Yael being discovered or falling victim to one of the many threats of the race described in the book. The main idea (Germany winning World War 2) was something that I now I’ve wondered about, and my mum has brought up many times in the past.
The use of a race to move the story along was something I thought was very creative and exciting – there was so much danger involved that I had no time to calm down, it was just constantly tense and perfect.
Unfortunately, I found that as the main setting of the book is during a motorcycle race, there was a lot of description of driving motorcycles that dragged a bit too long in some sections. Most of the time, however, the amazing writing made up for this.
I also thought that Yael seemed a bit too emotionless at some points. She seemed to be too capable of hurting the people she had become close to, using the same ‘hit-on-the-head-and-run’ technique quite a few times.