When they uncover the truth about BradCom’s elite, will Taylor settle for a life that was built on lies? Or will she fight for the faith—and the love—that she truly wants?
Partial synopsis provided by Goodreads.
Series: The Revolutionaries #1
Author: J. Dolores Perry
Publication Date: April 9, 2019
Publisher: Renegade Pen Press
Page Count: 200
Genre: Young Adult, Christian Fiction, Dystopian
My Rating: ★★1/2
I received an ARC of this book via BookSirens in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!
All included quotes have been taken from an ARC and may not match the finished publication.
Content Warning: Religious persecution, Segregation, Prejudice, Oppression, Discrimination, Arranged Marriages, Death
”When my ancestors created this community, they dreamt of a day when we would finally be free from their superstitions.
I was so excited when I first came across this read. A Christian dystopia!? I thought to myself. It’s a genre that I’ve rarely happened upon. I believe it’s one of a kind when paired with the Young Adult genre. I personally, always hold open a welcoming door for more Christian fiction literature, so I was eager to give it a go. What I ended up reading was rather underwhelming. While the premise is riveting, I just needed so much more.
Taylor is the main character, a teen girl who is betrothed since the age of three, and will soon become wife to the next leader of BradCom. Located in the setting of what used to be the United States, society has taken on a new form altogether. Those who call themselves “Christians” are now labeled as “the Fallen,” the irony being intentional. The truth is that Christians are constantly oppressed, and readily punished if caught praying or sharing about their faith in public.
”Every Christian is a liability; that’s the only truth that matters.”
The segregation between believers and non-believers is evident. The upper-class, and ones that head the community are non-believers, and the lower, working class are Christians. There are quite a few things in this story that are rather disturbing. Several times, there is reference to “the Fallen” being wiped out whenever the leaders see fit. Britton, who is positioned to become the next lead threatens this himself. Christians are only allowed one child, and live under scrutiny their entire lives. The morals of the community lack greatly. Taylor’s own mother encourages her to “give Britton what he wants to make him happy”.
”It’s my parents’ decision, and when I marry Adam, I’ll have to renounce God in front of everybody.
Children are arranged for marriage as soon as possible by their parents, even as young as three. Having no choice in the matter, many Christians arrange marriages for their children to children from those who are not Christians, forcing them to denounce their faith in order to “‘gain” a better lifestyle. But for those who truly believe in God, this is something that is quite impossible.
As the storm rolled in, I wondered if there would ever be a sunrise that could take me back to those moments, when my innocence was still intact. The darkness had destroyed my view, in more ways than one.
The story concept really is quite good, but I felt like the book was missing some, hundred pages of description, and detail. Many things were merely brushed upon, then pushed back into the shadows where they remained in murky despair, desperate for more page time. The characters, community/setting, and world-building lack so much. Really, everything needed a lot more detail. This is why I have rated this book 2.5 stars, as it is compelling, but not descriptive enough to really sink me in—I could feel the heart, but not the body. Even though Those Who Rise has some faults, it provides is a chilling view into a future that follows some current trends happening and being pushed in society today against religious freedom for Christians.
Sexual content: Some, mainly kissing.
My Rating: ★★1/2
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