Fuse by Julianna Baggott
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
The second installment in the Pure trilogy was a solid middle entry. I was impressed enough by that because often middle books are a bit... well, middling. I wasn't sure exactly at the opening how much time had passed since the first book but OSR is now more of a refuge outpost than the scary, militaristic organization it was before. Pressia, Bradwell & El Capital (with Helmud, of course) are together & Partridge & Lyda are off & on the move with the Mothers. Both groups are doing what they can to figure out the madness that is Ellery Willux and there's quite a bit of good action that happens to both before the groups splinter again. We also get Fignan, a black box with quite a personality & lots of information to impart.
Mostly, it was enjoyable to follow along as the puzzle was put together. I have to say that there was some serious repetitive romantic angst that wore on me. So much so that when a character would start veering off into it, I'd scan the next lines & engage again when they were done. I cared about how the characters were feeling but those feelings never much changed though much of the book & it ceased to be interesting. Lyda was the exception. Her feelings expressed were constantly evolving & that was awesome. El Capitan really stole the show in this book & I found myself truly worried that he wouldn't survive (spiders & vines, oh my!). Bradwell also ranked highly for me. Pressia & Partridge weren't bad but they aren't my favorites. I don't know what it was about them in this book, but I definitely liked them less than the other players.
I look forward to the next book because this one ends with the cliffhanger of Pressia, Bradwell (the wings... wow.) & El Capitan in Newgrange & Partridge & Lyda in the Dome. At least all the players are back in the groups they began in but I can honestly say that I don't know what will happen next.
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