The Second Rebel by Linden A. Lewis

Rating: 4 out of 5.

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Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton

Publish Date: 24 August 2021

Page Count: 512 pages

Linden Lewis’ debut The First Sister delivered subdued, gothic vibes, featuring spaceships equipped with dusty temples and silent nuns rather than neon lights and shining chrome. The Second Rebel hits harder and faster, continuing the rapidly escalating events of The First Sister’s closing chapters. Lewis describes The Second Rebel as having ‘sexy goodness and Empire Strikes Back vibes’. If I were to describe this book in one word, it would be ‘angry’. 

“When death comes for you… when it grasps you with cold fingers, that anger can burn through it. That anger can save you. Better to be alive and angry than dead and peaceful.”

The story spans the solar system, following the respective journeys of Astrid, Lito, Hiro, and this time Luce, as rebellion spreads and corruption festers. We see the full extent of the Icarii oppression of Asters and learn more about the mysterious Synthetics who’ve cut themselves off from humans. 

Between the bloody, twisted secrets of the Sisterhood, the dark deeds of Val Akira labs and the grim determination of the Rebellion, this book is intense, sure to leave you with an emotional hangover. 

The political history and multiple storylines made it tricky for me to jump straight into the story again, being someone used to binge-reading book series’. Luckily, Lewis has provided this handy synopsis, which supplements the main characters’ contemplation of recent events in the opening chapters.

The Second Rebel is different from The First Sister, with more action, violence, and heartache. As the overarching story reaches its climax, I’m almost scared to read the final instalment, but I’m confident it will be epic. 

If you’d like to learn more about the author and their awesome series, you can check out our interview here!

Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review!

Trigger warnings: Amputation, chronic pain, torture (referenced), human trafficking, sexual abuse (referenced), suicide, death of family, mental illness

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