Halo – Frankie Rose (2013)

Halo is the first in a series by Frankie Rose set in a dystopian future and follows the story of Kit, a teenager who is thrust into the world of emotions and when her halo is disconnected.

Rose deals with the lack emotion in her main protagonist almost flawlessly with the lack of distinct empathy for others leading the reader to question how powerful the emotions are that guide our moral compass. While having to deal with the onslaught of emotions, Kit, is also faced with having to cope with her actions at the beginning of the novel and the consequences those actions bring upon her own state of mind.

While the idea of a dystopian future is not unheard of into today’s young adult literature Rose combines all of the elements that make a good young adult fiction and makes it fantastic. The story compelled me to read the whole book within a matter of days. It uses the same setting that many novels use with a higher powered society controlling the lower class yet Rose’s unique twist gives the narrative a “new” feel to a common setting.

Kit is a rounded believable character, in a normal setting she could even be perceived to be a normal teenager dealing with emotions that are beyond their control. As she struggles to categorise and control her emotions she becomes a three dimensional character, Rose manages to accurately reflect a complicated stage in all of our lives with ease.

Rose spins all of the plates in this novel; the focus on emotions is a dominant theme however, she manages to inject current themes within the text with women and their place in society being a major player. Having male opinions raised so openly and giving them a strong rebuttal that women should be allowed to defend themselves sends a clear message to all readers what the main subtext of the novel is about. Kit is a clear representation of what an independent woman can be. She becomes valued by others and gains the respect of women and men alike through her actions, experiences and self.

I would fully recommend this novel to anyone who is into dystopian future, young adult or adult. Rose makes new brilliantly with what has become an ever increasing genre yet manages to stay on common ground so not as to disorientate the reader. I got this book for free on my iBooks app yet I will happily say that if I saw this book on the shelf in a store I would pay full price for it. I can’t wait to read the next instalment.

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