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I was very excited to receive an Advanced Readers Copy of Shattered Veil by Tracy E. Banghart. The story really sucked me in once I started reading it and I didn't want to put it down. I enjoyed the story of Aris from start to finish and I think there is a little bit of Aris in all of us young and old.
While Shattered Veil on the surface may seem very superficial--a young girl bucks the system to follow her true love--Aris doesn't necessarily take the path one might suspect or that might seem predictable based on other young adult novels out there. My favorite thing about Aris is that she was willing to examine herself at almost every step of her journey and recognize that things needed to change--either herself or the world around her. She challenged my own thoughts about how one goes about affecting change in the world.
While this is just an introductory book in the series, it doesn't get bogged down in the details. You learn a bit about the world, Atalanta, and its villages and how the war is affecting them. There are few key players that are involved in the plot and just enough is shared with the reader to keep the plot moving forward with a whisper of a history that existed before one opened the pages of Shattered Veil. I particularly wanted to know more about Dianthe and Nyx. There is something there and just for a moment you think you'll learn more and then the story moves on.On a deeper level, I wonder if Banghart has some strong opinions on women's rights. There are a few quotes, like the one above, that seem very pointed toward the government and their roles in directing how a woman should/should not use her body. It made me think about recent stories in the news about birth control as well as a woman's role in the military. The statements are bold, they fit within the scope of the story, but if you are up on current events, it is easy to see a correlation between the story and the real world.
I give Shattered Veil by Tracy E. Banghart a thumbs up. I love Aris and the world of Atalanta. The book takes you on a wild, unexpected journey that keeps you moving forward until you get to the very end. I look forward to the next book in the series and hope to learn more about where Aris goes next AND a bit more about Dianthe and Nyx.