A thrilling sci-fi dystopic series from an award-winning author of dystopian fiction
In book two, Ava's journey continues as she searches inside the mainframe to find Chief Morray. She locates his archive files, sending her way back to the early days. Society was collapsing, but young, idealistic William Morray had hoped his father's acclaimed Repatterning Program - a precursor to the brilliant New Agenda - could manage the upheaval and get things back on track. They said the Repatterning Program was for the greater good, but like most advertising, it was a lie. The horrifying plan entailed eradicating all cities, homes, and people outside of the Elite citizenship. William Morray joins an underground rebel alliance to end the Repatterning Program and save what's left of civilization.
©2014 Simone Pond (P)2015 Simone Pond
Simone Pond places her characters in extremely tough situations and then makes them bite and claw their way out of them. He's not afraid to show us a flawed main character who you have mixed feelings for. It's great.
Morray. He's what the book is about so he's who we focus on.
Really good voice. Very nice to listen too and he kept good pace throughout the narration.
What made Morray, Morray?
This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of AudiobookBlast dot com
"The story didn't work for me despite good narrator"
The New Agenda is treated more like a prequel than a continuation of the story from The City Center. Ava links into the mainframe to try to find Morray, and finds his memory archive - from there we follow William Morray's coming of age story. While this was an interesting way to present a prequel, it really didn't further the story very much as far as what is happening in the "present day" world.
The prequel introduces us to Morray, before he gets to be the evil leader from The City Center. We see him as a compassionate young man, someone who wants to do right in the world and stop his father's terrible plan, saving everyone from the Elites. Unfortunately, this book suffers from a syndrome I call "throw all the awful things together in one book". [Spoilers ahead] This book covers the following trigger topics: rape on minors, suicide attempt, mothers sleeping with boys their son's age, in addition to everything else going on with the battling sides.
The pacing of this book was similar to the first one, where everything happens really quickly and we really don't get an in-depth feel for the characters or their motivation before something else happens. This might work for a movie, but books are different. So I can't say that I cared for anyone in this book very much, and that is too bad.
I did find all the "tech" and the plans to "Dollhouse" people's consciousness interesting. But for the most part, this book didn't really work for me.
The audio narration was good, though. I enjoyed the narrator's voices for all the characters.
I received a copy of this book from Audiobook Blast in exchange for my honest review.
This book is a prequel to the first book The City Center which I really enjoyed.The story revolves around the events that led to the creation of the city centers dystopian society.The author creates an intriguing insight into the events that led to the world of Morray and his cohorts.The twists and turns of Morrays story show the human side of evil.I loved this book and would absolutely recommend it to any fan of the YA Dystopian genre The narrator did a good job portraying the characters.I purchased the e-book but received a copy of this audiobook from the author in exchange for an honest review.
"The past makes us who we are in the future."
A story told 99% of the time from a male POV, so Ryan becomes the voice of William Morray. He does slight personality variations for the different characters. Simone's writing makes it easy to know who's talking and follow the story along as Ryan vocalizes it for us. Ryan's voice is easy to listen to. I didn't hear any slips in the recording or background noise either. All is clean in the recording.
Yes, and there are more books. I'm curious about Morray's past and how it will connect to Ava and Joseph's journey to figure out where Morray's essence is in the Mainframe. I'm even left wondering what Ava will really do to make everything safe for her baby. Will she cross the line?
The young characters in the story grow into mature characters with the experiences they live through. They fight to survive. There is an intimate moment with two characters. We also learn of abuse another lived through. They are all making the best out of the world and doing a good job of it as they fight against the terrible change that's happening.
We get a lot of information of current living, before the City Center and Repatterning, through William in the first chapter. It's a bit of a slow start with this introduction. There was a lot of lead up to when William is shown the truth of the Repatterning. It's in Chapter 6 we learn this, and feels that the story takes off from here. The story drew me in curious to see what happens to William and his friends, and even his father. In the end, after what feels as the big show down, it feels as things slow again. As we are getting the description of science that is created and used in City Center and how William comes to be Chief Morray we know. It was so slow I kept looking to see how many more minutes were left as it felt like it should be over.
I didn't want to feel bad for moray, but then you get the to all the twisted things that happened to him. however, he then pisses you off again at the end. maybe his line of thought is a man thing? I really enjoyed this back story to how the craziness began and it really makes you wonder if it would be that easy to bring down society.
"Could not suspend disbelief--even for dystopia"
The first book was good enough that I got the second. The second is rarely as good as the first, but this was laughably terrible. There's not a lot I can say without spoilers to illustrate why this book was so bad, so SPOILERS AHEAD.
1. Seriously? One man wants to kill off 90% of the population to serve an "elite" population and gets his band of a few cronies on board to make it happen? Yes, it was in book one, and stupid there, but there wasn't a lot of focus on how it got that way in the first book so I was better able to ignore the dumb premise. And the reality show the elites watch that celebrates the destruction of most of mankind was a ridiculous device to show what was happening on the outside while our hero/future villain was stuck in an underground luxury bunker.
2. The main character (the back story to our big villain, William Morray, in book one) was...ugh. He's weepy and lovesick, yet gets his friend pregnant instead of ever sleeping with his love interest. Or maybe he did sleep with her. I confess the book was so bad I dozed off for about an hour. He might have slept with her then.
3. A flimsy suicide attempt by one of the characters that's over in 30 seconds.
4. A huge betrayal and subsequent death that's over in 30 seconds.
5. Poor character development. Characters are generally underdeveloped or cardboard caricatures. Even our main character, who starts out being pretty well developed (albeit weepy, wimpy, and mooning over a girl) but that fell apart. He has to start veering towards being the evil man he is in book 2, and it just didn't work that well--it was rushed among other things.
6. The author apparently forgot what she wrote in the first book. e.g. In book one it takes Morray decades (or was it a hundred years/) to like his right hand man, but they like each other just fine by the end of this book.
7. Child molestation (discussion of what happens to one of the characters, nothing graphic) but still, no thanks.
8. Mother sleeping with her son's teen-aged arch enemy and he walks in on it. Sigh. Not graphic, but did we really need that? No.
9. Very little of Ava (from the first book). She's just a device (searching the main frame to find Morray) to tell Morray's story, which turns out to be insipid, tedious, etc.
10. Basically, not a single character was likable--either because they weren't developed, were villains, caricatures, or insipid.
"Knowledge is Power"
Taking an unusual approach to writing, Book 2 of Simone Pond's The New Agenda series takes you back to the beginning, back to before the City Center is built and the villains of this series are still innocent. Although you know how things turn out in the end--read book 1-- you'll be surprised how it happened.
Narrator Ryan Kennard Buke does well to capture the youthful voice of this book's main character Morray. However, his other character voices are sub-par and blend together. It was difficult to differentiate who was speaking at times which pulled the listener out of the story. It was a smooth read with great timing, I just wish it had more variety.
Overall a wonderful second book that leaves you wanting more. I look forward to finishing this series.
This audiobook was given to me in exchange for an honest review.
"The New Agenda"
"This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of Audiobook Blast."
I really liked this novel. The development of the plot had just enough mystery and drama to keep it pleasurable to listen to.
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