The Dark Intercept, Julia Keller Book Review

Morning Mortals!

Back for another book review are we? Or here for the first time? Either way welcome, I’m excited to share my thoughts on one of October’s new YA releases The Dark Intercept.

Goodreads Summary:

The State controls your emotions. What would you pay to feel free?

In a radiant world of endless summer, the Intercept keeps the peace. Violet Crowley, the sixteen-year-old daughter of New Earth’s Founding Father, has spent her life in comfort and safety. Her days are easy thanks to the Intercept, a crime-prevention device that monitors and provokes emotion. But when her long-time crush, Danny Mayhew, gets into a dangerous altercation on Old Earth, Violet launches a secret investigation to find out what he’s hiding. An investigation that will lead her to question everything she’s ever known about Danny, her father, and the power of the Intercept.

Kicking off with our main character Violet. I liked the place she held in society, she’s the daughter of New Earth’s founder but she’s not ‘princess-like’ she holds a job and operates pretty much as a normal member of society. This could so easily have been a ‘riches to rags story, a route which I am glad the author didn’t go down. One thing I will say about Violet is that she is written as a very internal character. She’ll be in a short conversation with someone but you get about a page of her own thoughts about what she ought to say. It makes for a detailed insight into her character but you do wonder how much of a conversation with her would be filled by awkward pauses as she monologued to herself…

The concept of ‘the intercept’ is very interesting, I’ll be interested to see where else it goes in future novels. But the idea of a world where people are forcibly controlled by their emotions was something that I don’t think I have encountered before (or if I have it has never been the driving force as much as it is in The Dark Intercept. This is another YA book that forces you to tackle some difficult issues such as identity and whether people should have access to our most personal feelings. But it doesn’t slip too far into being preachy or feeling like an ethics lesson disguised as a novel.

The only issue I had with this book was the way the romance felt a little tacked on? In some ways it was necessary as a plot device, but I think there was too much of a desire to resolve things before the end of the book. Goodreads leads me to believe that there are potentially other books in this series, if that’s the case I think this could have been developed further in a later novel rather than stuck onto the end of this book.

I think this book took a powerful concept and ran with it well. There isn’t as much action as I initially expected but there are a number of powerful character driven moments that shape this into a great read. In many ways it ticks a lot of the stereotypical ‘first there was the hunger games what do we do now’ novel boxes but it actually reads as its own novel, I look forward to seeing what comes next.

My rating: 4/5 stars

By the way, I received a digital advanced review copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley. All opinions are my own.

What say you? Are you adding this to your (presumably humongous) TBR pile for November? Let me know in the comments below!


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