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Review: Defiance

Defiance

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DEFIANCE by Stephanie Tyler was released in the U.S. on June 10, 2013 in eBook format and on June 14th in audio format. It is currently available to order online in both formats at AMAZON and in eBook format at BARNES & NOBLE.

Published by Carina Press, the story is 232 pages.

DEFIANCE is the first book in author Stephanie Tyler’s New Adult series of the same name. The second book in the series, REDEMPTION, is slated for release on September 16, 2013.

Note: This review is based on an eARC that I received from the publisher in exchange for my honest thoughts about the book. A finished copy was purchased for my collection.

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Description…

Rebelling against her legacy as the MC’s princess, Tru Tennyson escaped the ruthless, male-dominated culture of the Defiance motorcycle club. Three years later, her newfound freedom is ripped away, thanks to a massive hybrid storm that killed millions. Now, in the post-Chaos world of semi-darkness and near-total anarchy where gangs rule, she discovers the dangerous world of Defiance may be the one thing that can keep her safe.

Tru is at the MC’s mercy when she’s dragged back to her former home … and to the only man she’s ever pictured a future with. Caspar is the bastard son of the club’s leader, her safe haven when life got rough — and her onetime lover the night she left. When Tru refuses to trade sex for power and be claimed by a rival club leader, she also dares to announce she wants Caspar instead, throwing the MC into turmoil.

Tru’s brazen revolt could start a gang war and destroy the club from within. Now both Tru and the MC must wait for Caspar’s response … and the inevitable fallout.

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Dark, savage and wickedly sexy, DEFIANCE delivers on its promise. It brings readers into a post-apocalyptic world ruled by violence, dominated by those strong enough, brutal enough, organized enough, to stay in power. It takes them into the world of the Defiance Motorcycle Club where women are possessions and battles are often fought to the death.

When Tru Tennyson left home, looking to escape a life she wasn’t sure she wanted and a father whose brutality wasn’t reserved only for his job, she thought she’d never return. But when the world fell apart and life outside the MC became more dangerous than the one in it, going back was her only option.

Even though it meant turning to a rival Club’s leader to bring her back. And even though it meant she would likely be killed or be forced to face a fate much worse than death. But she had to try.

Because she didn’t want to be some prize for the leader of the Kill Devils. She knew she wouldn’t be able to survive on her own. And she didn’t want what happened in her past to catch up with her.

But gambling on Caspar, the Club’s Enforcer, to stand up for her was risky. She had no guarantee he’d be willing to put everything on the line for her safety. She had no idea if he cared whether she lived or died. The odds weren’t in her favor. And after seeing him again, she was certain she bet wrong.

Told from three of its characters’ points of view – Tru, Cas and Mathias – DEFIANCE offers an exciting look at author Stephanie Tyler’s post-Chaos world where daylight is rare and violence is abundant. It is a story about survival – in the post-apocalyptic world and in the MC. About loyalty – to friends, lovers, the Club. About change – for outdated rules, for oppressive views. And at its core it is a love story.

The author created two incredibly appealing main characters who are strong on their own but even stronger together. Tru is a kick-ass female protagonist. She is smart. She is a survivor. And she isn’t above doing what has to be done in order to survive. She knows her mind and she isn’t afraid to speak it. But she also knows when to keep silent. Although a former “princess” of the MC she is not looking for a prince.

Cas is not a typical “bad boy” male protagonist. He is not hiding a soft interior under a hard exterior. He is not a hero in disguise. He takes dangerous to an entirely different stratosphere. And he makes absolutely no apologies for who he is or what he does.

DEFIANCE is a fantastic start to this new series. The story is deliciously dark. The world is refreshingly different. The setting is harsh, gritty, brutal. The characters rough, cruel, deadly, but also brave and fiercely protective. All of which makes for a wildly entertaining read.

Reviewer gives this book…

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On a personal note…

I knew I was going to love this book. The description screamed that DEFIANCE was my kind of book. It was dark. It was sexy. It was delectable. The world was dangerous. The characters were fierce, ruthless, violent, deadly.

I did not want the story to end. Which makes me really glad that this is a series and not a standalone. Even if the next book focuses on different characters.

I loved meeting Cas and Tru. I loved getting to see the story from each of their perspectives and was intrigued by a third character’s point of view that was offered. I loved getting peeks at their history from before Tru ran off. I loved getting to see what their lives as members of a Motorcycle Club were like pre-Chaos.

It took me a couple of chapters to get comfortable with the clipped style the author used for the dialogue and for the characters’ thoughts. But once I figured out the rhythm and got used to their vernacular everything began to flow. It was the perfect style to use and it fit the story so well.

The world was fascinating. It held me captive from the moment I began reading. It was one I haven’t visited in any of the many stories I’ve read. My typical post-apocalyptic reads involve looking in from the outside on violent motorcycle “gangs” and not being plunged into their world. It was exciting. It was shocking. It was wicked.

But it was the characters that I was most drawn to. I loved that each and every one of them was strong. I loved that even though Tru needed help to get out of her situation, she wasn’t a damsel in distress. She was totally kick-ass. And while Caspar may have been her one weakness, she was also his.

Seeing the story, and their story, come together from each of their perspectives was awesome. It allowed me to get to know who they were in a way I know I never would have been able to had this story been told from just one of their point’s of view. The face each of them presented would never have clued me in on what they were really thinking at those key moments in each other’s lives. So I’m so glad to have had peeks into both of their thoughts.

But I wasn’t too sure what to make of Mathias’ point of view when it was introduced into the story. I wasn’t sure why I was seeing the story from his perspective. And while I absolutely adored him, I am still not entirely sure seeing things through his eyes was absolutely necessary, even though it appears that the sequel will focus on him and his friend Bishop, a character who is a bit of a mystery.

The Motorcycle Club culture is one I am not in the least bit familiar with. So I can’t say how closely the Defiance MC resembles a real one or whether it was modified significantly to fit in with a world that had been ravaged by storms. I’m guessing the general structure is the same, but that everything was amped up. Which made it incredibly appealing.

This story is not one without violence. It was bloody. The characters were on edge, the world was on edge, so things tended to escalate pretty quickly. And Tru’s arrival put things that were already set into motion on the fast track.

But I loved following along as all the pieces came together and the end game was revealed. And no, I’m not going to say whose end game that is. Or whether they won.

Power struggles – internal and external to the Club. Secrets. Betrayal. Brutality. Sex. A love story. DEFIANCE brought it all. And I want more.

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Favorite passage…

There were a lot of passages that I considered favorites. Some were a bit too violent and some were a bit too sexy to reveal here. And while this one between Cas and Tru may be just a tiny bit spoiler-y it is one of my very most favorite ones.

“You have to tell me things. Have to.”

“Will. And you gotta play your game in public till all the shit finishes.”

“I can do that.”

“No can. Have to. Means your life. Means mine. And, Tru, in case you don’t know it yet, you’re my life. Yeah?”

“Yeah,” she murmured back.

This review is based on an eARC that I received from the publisher in exchange for my honest thoughts about the book.

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