Ever since the Divergent series and the Walking Dead TV show, I fell in love with dystopian settings. There is something fascinating about the Earth crumbling to pieces and the need to survive. I’d probably be the first one to die if something would actually happen to our Earth, but that doesn’t mean that I cannot prepare myself in the only way I know – reading as many dystopian novels as I can.
«Kill Code» by Clive Fleury is a fast-paced, action-packed adult dystopian novel, about an ex-cop joining the NSC (National Security Council) forces. The book isn’t long, a little above 200 pages, and the only reason I didn’t finish it in one sitting (even though I really wanted to!) was that I started reading it very late at night and kept falling asleep at around 70% of the book.
It’s the year 2031. Our future. Their present. A world decimated by climate catastrophe, where the sun’s heat is deadly and the ocean rises higher every day. A world ruled by the rich, powerful, and corrupt. A world where a good man can’t survive for long.
Hogan Duran was a good man once. He was a cop, forced to resign in disgrace when he couldn’t save his partner from a bullet. Now Hogan lives on the fraying edges of society, serving cruel masters and scavenging trash dumps just to survive. But after four years of living in poverty, Hogan finally gets a chance to get back on his feet. He’s invited to join the National Security Council, the powerful paramilitary organization responsible for protecting the rich and powerful from the more unsavory elements of society. All he needs to do is pass their deadly entrance exam, and he’ll be rewarded with wealth and opportunity beyond his wildest dreams.
But this ex-cop’s path to redemption won’t be easy. The NSC are hiding something, and as Hogan descends deeper and deeper into their world, he starts to uncover the terrible truth of how the powerful in this new world maintain their power…and just how far they will go to protect their secrets.
Thank you Netgalley and BooksGoSocial for a free ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions expressed herein are my own and not influenced by the company or its affiliates in any way.
Hogan Duran, the ex-cop, lives at the one of the poorest neighborhood. He has to scavenge for food at the trash sites, work daily jobs if he is lucky to get one and try to stay out of trouble. He has one way out of this miserable life – to become an NSC agent. Hogan applied for NSC trials several times before and got rejected twice. Now the luck is finally on his side, as he receives the letter inviting him to board the train to NSC camp for the tryouts.
WHAT I LIKED:
1 – Okay! If you loved the Hunger Games preparations to the actual game and the trials at the Dauntless faction in Divergent, NSC trials are basically that but on steroids and for adults! Intense, filled with rivalry! Honestly, the competition was probably my favorite part. I get so invested in the character’s struggles and the drive to win. I love it!
2 – Clive Fleury is also a screenwriter, TV and film director and producer. And you could feel that while reading the book because it would make a very intense and interesting movie. Basically, any movie with dystopian settings is up there on my top list.
3 – You could read this book in a couple of hours. It’s relatively short and very action-packed. There is no breathing room at all, the punches keep coming at Hogan at all time of day and night.
4 – I loved the small Virtual Reality element of this book. Basically one of the trials was for the recruits to participate in a VR challenge. I’m not gonna say anything else, so you’ll have to read the book to see what it was! 🙂
WHAT I DIDN’T LIKE:
1 – This is a dystopian book, set in a dystopian world. But we didn’t get to see much of it. Or explained how it all happened. It felt more like “Oh, look! This is a dystopian world, and life is hard. People need to learn to survive”, without actually showing more of the world. Maybe there will be more books in this world / series? I’m not sure, but I wish we’d see more of the background story.
Once again, the book told us as much as a movie would, just creating the scenes but not dwelling on the whys and hows. Which makes sense for the movies, they can’t explain everything in 2 hours. The books are different and should be more detailed, in my opinion.
This isn’t a book I’d go out of my way to search for. If you really want a very fast-paced action dystopian read, I would highly recommend this. Otherwise, I’d just watch a movie with some similar settings and it would satisfy my craving for dystopian world in the same way.