Friday, February 01, 2013

Review: Fuse by Julianna Baggott

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Julianna Baggott
Series: Pure, #2
Genre: Adult Post Apocalyptic
Publication date: February 19th 2013
by Grand Central Publishing

When the world ended, those who dwelled within the Dome were safe. Inside their glass world the Pures live on unscarred, while those outside—the Wretches—struggle to survive amidst the smoke and ash.

Believing his mother was living among the Wretches, Partridge escaped from the Dome to find her. Determined to regain control over his son, Willux, the leader of the Pures, unleashes a violent new attack on the Wretches. It’s up to Pressia Belze, a young woman with her own mysterious past, to decode a set of cryptic clues from the past to set the Wretches free.

An epic quest that sweeps readers into a world of beautiful brutality, Fuse continues the story of two people fighting to save their futures—and change the fate of the world.

*A copy was provided by Hachette Book Group for review*


Just as disturbing and highly addicting, Fuse is an excellent sequel to Julianna’s compelling dystopian series. If you’re known to love unpleasant, often disturbing post-apocalyptic settings, this series is one you should be reading. The world in Pure may just be one of the most freakish worlds I have ever encountered. It’s horrifying, yet I can’t help but feel a slight thrill the more I read about it. Descriptions of how humans are fused with objects, other humans, or the earth itself is, without a doubt, one of the weirdest dystopian imaginings, but you know what? It works so amazingly well. It gives us a world that is unbelievable cruel, a world that breeds fear for its inhabitants like no other. Besides, considering what caused the apocalypse, I would not tell you that this is unrealistic; its setting is completely believable for what they live in, laden with death, anomalies, and frightening creations that are not paranormal, but stem of an apocalypse caused by science. What I also love is that it isn’t so far off in the future. These survivors remember what it was like in the “Before”, they lived through the end of the world as we know it before they were plunged into unimaginable horror. That, my friends, is how you go about building a fictional world!

As we have already been introduced to the world and characters in Pure, Fuse, like most sequels, brings us deeper into the thick of things. We get even more world building which comes by primarily from our visiting more of the world itself. Thus, we not only get further details that expand our knowledge of its monstrosities, we also see new territories that convey even more intriguing post-apocalyptic weirdness/happenings. Furthermore, regardless of the novel’s length, I found the plot to be moving at the perfect pace, making great progress along the way–especially considering it’s a middle book. We get more relationship development, more experimental science, more conspiracies, more mysteries revealed, and after you have read all of this delightfulness, you will appreciate its gorgeous cover a million times more–it ties in so perfectly with the book.

Multiple POVs is what we get again in Fuse–4 total. Yes this is a lot, and it is done most brilliantly! Pressia, El Capitan, Partridge, Lyda; everyone is back, and it was good to be back. It’s on rare occasion that I can come to like and connect with every single POV in a book that has so many. Every one of them instantly pulled me in. I would follow their story as if I was there, flitting from one shadow to another, following their every move. I love being everywhere at once, getting everyone’s perspectives, motives, and intentions. The POV changes are done smoothly, cut in ways that multiply the book’s stimulating factor. This is true for both Pure and Fuse, the latter combined with even more character development. As for which character is my favorite, I have to admit I have a soft spot for El Capitan and his brother. Their connection is unlike any other–in the most literal of senses–creating a bond that is quite interesting; sometimes tender, other-times bringing up strong waves of sympathy for their awful situation. Helmud is hard to decipher in this pair. His mental disability makes for a surprisingly engaging character. I’m fairly certain he’s much smarter than El Capitan gives him credit for. He is going to surprise us all, is what I think!

Did you know this series is listed as an adult novel? The characters are teenagers, but the nightmarish situations they have to endure, the horror and gore, as well as the length of the book are most definitely pointing to an adult read. Plus I would never recommend this to younger readers. These “teenagers” have to grow up fast in this dreadful world, they are all way beyond their years. While I am an absolute big fan of this series, it does require a certain audience, though if you were not scared off by this review, I think you and I both know that you will be coming to the dark side! If there is one thing to say, it’s that it is beyond inventive!

4 Hot Espressos

The Pure Series

Find my review of Pure, here!

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Canadian blogger, wife, mother, coffee lover, and sarcastic at heart! She has had a love for all things bookish since before Amazon and eReaders existed *le gasp*. You can also find her organizing tours and other fun things at Xpresso Book Tours.

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16 Responses to “Review: Fuse by Julianna Baggott”

  1. Mary @ BookSwarm

    Huh. I didn’t know this was considered adult. Even though it’s got all the crazy-dark stuff going on, I’d still place it firmly in YA. PURE freaked me out too much so I don’t think I’m going to pick up FUSE, even though the writing sounds just as good as it was in the first book.

    • Giselle

      I didn’t know until a friend told me and argued against it until I found it listed as adult online and in the stores lol. But yeah I agree it has a very YA feel if you don’t count the gore and stuff. This one has a sex scene in it too.

  2. Jenn Renee

    Awesome Review! loved the first one and can’t wait to read this one. I did enjoy every character in Pure, they also pulled me and pretty much instantly. I wonder if the first one is considered ya or adult. hmmm.

    • Giselle

      Yes the whole series is considered Adult. Maybe it would be “New Adult” now though I don’t think that genre was really around when Pure was released.

  3. Amy

    I can’t wait to read this!! It’s coming up on my list soon! It sounds so awesome! I really loved the dark, gritty, gore of Pure so I am really looking forward to getting back into this world, scary as it is! Fab-tastic review pumpkin!!!

  4. Camille Picott

    Man, these covers just take my breath away! It is so refreshing to hear that the publisher actually put some thought into whether or not these were YA or Adult books. It irritates me when books get pigeon-holed as YA just because there are teen protags. Great review!

  5. Kara_Malinczak

    I agree. This is an awesome, disturbingly creepy series. I like it quite a bit but there is something that always keeps it from being a 5 star read for me. I think it’s the characters. I just don’t like them all that much! Except El Capitan. I LOVE him. Great review, G.

  6. Megan K.

    So glad you enjoyed this, Giselle! I couldn’t get an ARC of FUSE, and I really wanted it because I loved PURE, but it’s good to know that the sequel lived to your expectations. 🙂

    YES. I totally agree that the idea is infinitely creepy (and not to mention a little bit gross) – but entirely possible. I wasn’t able to connect much with the characters in the first book (too many POVs), but I think FUSE will be much, much better!

    Lovely review as always, Giselle!

  7. Jenea Whittington

    Our library had the first one as a YA book, but I noticed a while back it was no longer in that section, I wondered why. This does sounds like it has some terrifying situations in it, I am all for scary. And the characters sound fantastic. Awesome review. You have definitely peeked my interest now. I will have to find the first one.

  8. Kat Balcombe

    I had a few issues with Pure, mainly around the POVs, so it’s great to hear they are done well in Fuse. That lady gives some pretty scary imagery with her storytelling!

  9. Alexa Y.

    I was blown away when I read Pure last year, because I thought the world-building and the characters were so interesting. I’m very excited to read Fuse and revisit this crazy world they’re in!