In a world without surface water, Jimini Renn wants nothing more than to live inside the protective walls of Adam City for the rest of his life, but his little brother has other ideas. As far as Jimini is concerned, Adam City has everything he needs. It has a well that provides much-needed water, food, and safety from the dangers of the outside world. When his bookworm of a brother leaves to chase waterfalls, Jimini must follow even though he knows it will probably mean his death. When the first person he meets on the outside pulls a gun on him, he’s proven right. No one who calls himself a slaver and has a gun has Jimini’s safety in mind, even if he is sexy. The journey Jimini expects isn’t the one he gets.
This book was a bit outside of the box for me. I haven’t read a lot of dystopian stories and I was really excited to tackle this one. It sounded interesting and happily it was. I felt that this was probably what would be classified as New Adult (NA), which was no problem as far as I was concerned. I’ve read Young Adult (YA) and enjoyed it for me a good story is a good story, regardless of genre or classification.
I’m a long-time reader of fantasy, urban fantasy and paranormal genres so I love visualizing new worlds and the people who inhabit them and I found that incredibly easy to do with this story, so much so that throughout the story I kept wishing that I had been blessed with the ability to draw because from start to finish my mind turned this into a graphic novel. The author wove her story with a simplistic ease that drew the images in my mind allowing me to easily see the world that she had created.
Jimini is a kind and gentle soul who just wants to live out his life behind the walls of Adam City. His brother Aurri is a bookworm with the heart and soul of a dreamer and wanderer. When Aurri strikes out on his own beyond the walls of Adam City, Jimini doesn’t hesitate to follow. He doesn’t really know what lies beyond those walls but what he does know is that nothing is more important than the safety and wellbeing of his brother so if leaving Adam City is the only way to secure that he’ll risk whatever is out there. What he doesn’t count on is risking his heart. Barely outside the city he encounters a man in need of his help and Jimini’s conscience isn’t about to let him just walk away. Aaruth is a slaver hunter who has been forced to learn how to survive in a more brutal world that what lies behind the walls of Adam City. A world where even those who are seasoned to its cruelties sometimes get hurt and find themselves in need of assistance.
I loved travelling along side of Jimini and Aaruth as they followed Aurri on his quest to find the waterfalls. Watching as they went from cautious allies to lovers. It was a slow, sweet build of emotion but for those looking for hot on-page smexy times…you will be disappointed. I can’t say that I wasn’t but the lack of on-page sex sure didn’t keep me from feeling the love that these two men ultimately shared.
There is so much more that I could say about this story, I’m not sure I’d know where to stop. It worked well for me and I would definitely recommend it to anyone wanting something that’s a little different. I’m hoping that Ms Kelley has more to share with us in the lives of Jimini, Aurri and Aaruth along with some of the secondary characters that we met along the way.
My biggest regret for this book is that I really, really would love to see it as a graphic novel or maybe even the start of a series of graphic novels. It’s just the type of story that to me would lend itself beautifully to a more visual interpretation, but if you’re like me and were blessed with a fairly vivid imagination you’ll still enjoy the book.
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