Oscar Wilde once said that “life imitates art far more than art imitates life.” While I tend to agree, sometimes there’s glaring evidence of the opposite.
The Revolutions of Caitlin Kelman is one such novel. A dystopian YA that takes us through the corrupted streets of Dominion City. A place where the rich get richer, and the poor die in the streets. A city on the cusp of revolution as the Empire is set to crumble. Where the people might finally have a voice without fear of oppression.
Sounds awfully familiar, doesn’t it? Especially given the fact that Caitlin’s considered an illegal immigrant. Pretty sure I read that in the news only yesterday…
I will admit that while the story is good, the world-building is a little convoluted in areas. Or, rather, the reader needed a little more information. I want to know a little more history of how the Empire took power, how things were before. Something to compared Caitlin’s life to.
An interesting mystery takes place as both factions want Caitlin for themselves. And, no, this isn’t a case of “the Chosen One” trope. There’s different agendas and storylines hinted at. I’m hoping the next novels will continue to expand on them. Motives are political, and Caitlin’s adverse reactions reflect that well. As a whole, her character felt right for the story. There’s a myriad of supporting characters, but most of them felt fleeting. By the end of the novel, Caitlin’s character development had started. Some of the other characters got left behind.
There was, of course, a love story. It wasn’t too bad. The best part was that it was integral to pushing the plot forward, instead of just being a subplot.
Most of the writing was solid. The story tied together well. And it stands to set the other novels and their conflicts up. Detail felt lacking in a few places. The scenery, for the most part. The action was well-described, and there was plenty of that. I still don’t feel like I’ve got the best idea of what Dominion City looks like. I keep picturing a weird amalgamation of Gotham City and the Hooverville shantytowns of the Great Depression.
The worst part about starting a new series is that you don’t get all your answers at once. I have so many, and the author sets up a tantalizing cliffhanger at the end. I’m interested to see where the world ends up at the conclusion. Sincerely hoping that Dominion City has a much brighter future than how our own is looking.