Dissension (Chronicles of the Uprising #1) by K.A. Salidas
Release Date: February 3, 2014
Publisher: Rising Sign Books
Genre: Paranormal, Urban Fantasy, Dystopian
Source: Review Copy from NetGalley
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The great cataclysm wiped almost all life from the face of planet Earth, but tiny pockets of survivors crawled from the ashes, with only one thought: survival, at any cost.
But not all survivors were human.
In the dark, militant society that has risen in the aftermath, vampires, once thought to be mythical, have been assimilated and enslaved. Used for blood sport their lives are allowed to continue only for the entertainment of the masses. Reviled as savages, they are destined to serve out their immortal lives in the arena, as gladiators.
And there is no greater gladiator than Mira: undefeated, uncompromising...and seemingly unbreakable. When an escape attempt leads Mira into the path of Lucian Stavros, the city’s Regent, her destiny is changed forever.
Lucian, raised in a culture which both reviles and celebrates the savagery and inhumanity of vampires, finds Mira as intriguing as she is brash. An impulsive decision—to become Mira’s patron—changes more than just Lucian’s perception about vampire kind. The course of his life is altered in ways he could never have predicted—a life that is suddenly as expendable as hers.
Can Mira prove to Lucian that all is not as it seems? Can Lucian escape centuries of lies, bloodshed, and propaganda to see the truth? Or will the supreme power of the human overlords destroy them both?
Dissension is a unique combination that I would never have thought of: gladiators+vampires+dystopia. Usually, I avoid vampire novels, because of my Twilight shame years (I apologize if you love the Twilight saga). There is a stigma that I definitely harbor to them—it's not fair or rational, but it is what it is.
That being said, Dissension was actually a really enjoyable read. As a former Latin student (Canis numquam in via), I have a strange obsession with ancient Rome—well, really any ancient civilization nestled on the Mediterranean.
I think it's interesting that Salidas paired a post apocalyptic society with gladiator fights. I could see how this would occur if humans forgot what civilization was, but, as far as I can see, the city this is set in is a cultured one. Granted, Romans thought they were cultured too, but I'd like to think we'd learn from our past mistakes even after nuclear fallout.
Sorry, this is getting off base.
Mira is a stunning lead. I love her audacity and refusal to kowtow to society. Despite being a slave for thirty years--being forced to kill her own kind—she remains true to her convictions. It's the kind of bravery I admire and applaud in a female lead.
When she inadvertently gains Lucian—the Regent of her city—as her patron, Mira sees the opportunity to influence society. Mira attempts to show Lucian the savagery of the games and the hypocrisy of the human race. Humans believe that vampires are nothing but savage beasts who crave blood, but humans exploit them for their own barbaric pleasures.
Along the way, Mira discovers the secret plot of the upper echelon of society. Learning first hand of their cruel experiments on vampires, she vows to make a difference. Realizing that if she doesn't make a stand, no one will, she fights back the only way she can under penalty of death.
But the seeds of discontent have been sewn. Dissension is brewing.
If you want an interesting read that pairs unlikely elements—Dissension will be your jam. It is a surprisingly introspective novel (or I'm being too philosophical) that will keep you entertained!
Katie Salidas is a Super Woman! Endowed with special powers and abilities, beyond those of mortal women, She can get the munchkin off to gymnastics, cheerleading, Girl Scouts, and swim lessons. She can put hot food on the table for dinner while assisting with homework, baths, and bedtime… And, She still finds the time to keep the hubby happy (nudge nudge wink wink). She can do all of this and still have time to write. And if you can believe all of those lies, there is some beautiful swamp land in Florida for sale…
Katie Salidas resides in Las Vegas, Nevada. Mother, wife, and author, she does try to do it all, often causing sleep deprivation and many nights passed out at the computer. Writing books is her passion, and she hopes that her passion will bring you hours of entertainment.