Sfinas has taken a risk here, one that many couldn’t have pulled off, but he’s nailed it. If you like reading reports, you’ll love this. That might sound a little odd, but I’m not being sarcastic because the story is written completely in report form. Rather than have the story laid out for the reader in the usual way, it’s left to the reader to string it together from a series of reports that range from a personal diary of a rather psychologically challenged girl to excerpts from official documents. Apart from the diaries, the effect is somewhat impersonal, and it took me some time to get used to the style.
I didn’t find the characters particularly likable, but they were intriguing. I wanted to find out why they enjoyed a relationship that involved very violent sex (not explicit thankfully). Insights came as the book progressed as did a unifying thread of quelling a rebellion, exposing a traitor and characters and relationships not being what they appeared to be. The end had a surprising element that left me wondering – something I consider a good thing, especially in a book such as this.
I sweated over the star rating, hovering between 4.5 and 5 stars, and I eventually decided on 5 because the author has undoubtedly done what he set out to do and he’s done it well. The prose, though virtually all exposition, as would be expected in a report form, is well written, and the book has been finely edited. Also it’s refreshing to see a different approach to story telling.