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Broken City by D.D. Chant
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This review was first posted on Melissa's Midnight Musings on August 29 2012

I'm not quite sure where to start in reviewing this book. First off, I'll start by saying that I did like it. It's not perfect, but it's enjoyable enough of a read.

This is an interesting story about a group of people who are living in a compound. They send select few members of their tribe out to get food and supplies from time to time. And not all of the members of the tribe are what they seem.

This had a slightly dystopian feeling to it. I say slightly because I felt that the world building was a bit lacking, so you couldn't really get a feel for the outside world or even the complete inner workings of this world for that matter. All that you really find out is that there was a big financial crash, and people paid money to live in these pre built compounds. Now there are factions of people fighting for survival.

The main characters are likeable enough, although Deeta seems, a little young to me. Maybe it's just because she's so sheltered that she seems so young, but I found it odd that at 20 she's still calling her parents Mommy and Daddy and kissing them goodnight before going to sleep every night. And there was a lot of kiddie calling of the characters like Tom was Tommy and Jan was Janny, etc. I felt like this made the book a bit immature.

There is a nice romance between Deeta and Tommy. At first it seems like it's just a friendship, but slowly you start to tell that there's something more between them. The pacing of their relationship is nice and steady, with plenty of poignant moments between them.

One other thing that really took away from the story is that there are so many characters. There are just too many here for it to really make sense. Tommy's father had several wives, who had several children, and the network of brothers, sisters, children etc is just too much for this book. I had trouble keeping them all straight. And a lot of them don't really seem all that important. In my opinion, if they're not key, you shouldn't mention them, especially if all they're going to be is another name in a sea of names.

Another thing that I didn't enjoy was the author seemed to be talking straight to the reader in some of the descriptions. Sometimes this can work really well. I felt like it didn't work here because there's already so many characters to remember, that once the author starts saying things like "oh I don't know if I told you this but this character is like this because...it just doesn't work. The use here just pulled me further out of the story.

I wasn't particularly moved by the story or the characters, but they were somewhat enjoyable.

*I received a free e-copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.* ( )
  Melissalovesreading | Sep 30, 2018 |
Broken City
By D.D. Chant

This is book number one in a story about a post-apocalyptic world where families live in tribes in one of the many abandoned buildings left over after something known as, “the crash” happened. The main characters of this story are Deeta Richards and Tom. Deeta longs to see what is outside of her building because the only ones allowed outside of the compound are soldiers who go out and fight whatever is still out there and Tom is one of those soldiers. Tom is her dearest friend in this new world and although he keeps secret about his life before he was brought to Clark Tribe , Deeta never expected him to have kept the secret he shares with everyone after a kidnapping occurs from her. It is after this kidnapping that her entire life is turned upside down, and changes in a way she never expected it to.
The first half of this story is describing the longing Deeta feels to see the world outside of the tribe, her friendship with Tom, and describing the rules and traditions of the tribe. Although Deeta has her own family she spends a great deal of her time taking after the Jepsjon family that consists of three children, Tom, and the father figure being Professor Jep. Everything in the compound is routine until one night that men in camouflage break into the compound and kidnap Dec Jepsjon while the soldiers who fight outside the compound are gone. When the soldiers return and find that Dec , one of the Jepsjon children, has been taken it is then that Tom shares a family secret with the entire compound, and the tribe is in uproar over it. Soon after the tribe votes to decide if Tom and the remaining Jepsjon family should be allowed to stay in the tribe, the tribe must go out into the city and move to the Marshall tribe for protection against Tom’s secret. Once the Clark tribe has safely moved into the Marshall compound, the remaining Jepsjon family leaves without saying a word and that same night there is an attack on the Marshalls. Deeta and her sister, Jan, is then taken by the same camouflaged men that took Dec. From this point forward I will keep a secret from you because I do not like to spoil a good story but just know that there is a war, conspiracy, and a new found love within all of it. Although I was extremely skeptical reading this book, picturing it being similar to a Hunger Games type plot, but changed my mind when I read the first few pages of the book I cannot wait to read the second book and hope that D.D. Chant releases it soon considering Broken City came out in 2010. D.D. Chant had a few errors that should have been caught in the editing process, but overall is an excellent author and I love how through her descriptions, such as on page 273 when Chant writes the following “The children are listening to one of Uncle Jep’s stories as we enter the flat, it is an idyllic picture: Tarri has again wrapped herself around Uncle Jep and with her head on his shoulder is staring sleepily into the fire. The rest of the children are huddled on the floor, the fire’s warm glow playing over their excited faces.” With such beautiful imagery I am truly able to visualize everything as if I am Deeta herself.


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I would give this book a 4 out of 5 stars. ( )
  BookWormRflects | Jun 1, 2013 |
Broken City has to be one of the most captivating dystopia books I have read this year. The beautiful way it was written had me from the moment I started reading and I just could not put it down.

Deeta Richards has never left the building she was born in. She along with her family and the tribe they live with stay inside a building trying to stay safe. Outside their building it is a whole other world. It is an unsafe and dangerous place where you may not come back from.

Deeta, who is rather naïve, has made a life for her self by helping Tom take care of and raise orphans he has found outside their building. All the while she dreams of seeing the outside of the building. Unfortunately that may just happen…

This is what I would consider a clean book and I would recommend it to any YA reader who likes adventure and a bit of romance. Be prepared to not want to put it down until you are finished. ( )
  dpchapman | Aug 20, 2012 |
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