Book Review: Luminary by Krista McGee

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Title: Luminary
Series: Anomaly #2
Author: Krista McGee
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Release Date: January 7, 2014
Genres: Young Adult, Dystopian, Post-apocalyptic

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LuminaryLuminary
Anomaly Series #2
Krista McGee
Thomas Nelson, January 2014
ISBN 978-1-4016-8874-5
Trade Paperback

From the publisher—

She was an anomaly with a death sentence. Now she’s free.

Thalli was scheduled for annihilation. She was considered an anomaly–able to experience emotions that should have been eradicated by genetic modification. The Scientists running the State couldn’t allow her to bring undue chaos to their peaceful, ordered world. But seconds before her death, she is rescued.

Now Thalli is above ground in a world she thought was destroyed. A world where not even the air is safe to breathe. She and her three friends must journey across this unknown land, their destination a hidden civilization. It’s their only chance of survival.

Broken and exhausted after an arduous journey, they arrive in New Hope, a town that survived the nuclear holocaust. When Thalli meets the people there–people actually “born” to “families”–her small world is blown wide open.

Soon after their arrival to New Hope, the town comes under attack. She has escaped imminent death, but now Thalli is thrust into a new fight–a fight to save her new home. Does she know enough about this world of emotions, this world of chaos, to save not only herself, but the people she has come to love?

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Christian fiction can be something of a lightning rod for polarized reviews with some people, including me, enjoying it for what it is and others being outraged that they were sucked into reading it. The latter are a bit baffling to me because most Christian fiction is easy to identify before buying the book and that is certainly the case with the Anomaly series by Krista McGee and, yet, there are naysayers who can’t seem to get past the Christian element to the story beneath. Those readers will miss a good story in Luminary.

A post-apocalyptic, dystopian setting is a favorite of mine and this one is no disappointment. There are a few oddities, such as Thalli referring to the “ancients” who lived before the nuclear war when it’s only been 40 years, but the story itself is engaging and, at times, exciting. The scenes that take place in Athens are particularly gripping but it’s New Hope that is the kind of place I’d like to live in should I ever find myself in a post-apocalyptic world.

If I have any broad objection to raise about this novel, it’s that the very obvious difference between New Hope and Athens is rather heavy-handed, especially coupled with the strong religious beliefs espoused by John and coming to be embraced by Thalli. Still, I enjoyed Luminary a lot and found most of the characters to be appealing. I could do without the love triangle but I appreciated not having too quick a resolution for that and Ms. McGee leaves the reader wanting to know more, especially following the cliffhanger ending. I’ll be looking forward to reading Revolutionary next summer.

Reviewed by Lelia Taylor, January 2014.

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About Book #1

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About the Author

Krista McGeeKrista writes for teens, teaches teens, and more often than not, acts like a teen. She and her family have lived and ministered in Texas, Costa Rica, and Spain. Her current hometown is Tampa, FL.

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