Review: ‘Dead of Night’ by Carlyle Labuschagne

22400091In a dark and desolated After Earth, love still does exist, but the cost of bearing such a flaw is death.

World War III has left Earth in utter turmoil. People’s beliefs are said to be the cause of the worldwide destruction. After The Clearing new laws are set about – to show certitude in anything besides the law is weak and chargeable as mutiny. To be illogical and have faith in religion is illegal, to be limitless is dangerous. And Illness is seen as a defect – all flaws that are inexcusable.
But to love is the greatest betrayal of all man kind. It is a fault the world has long forgotten and punishable by death, a fatal risk Aecker and Opel are fully prepared to take – because in love there is freedom. But how far can they push back before it claims their lives and of those they care about?

[From Goodreads]

Book details

Genre: YA Dystopia

Publisher: Fire Quill




I received a free copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This has in no way influenced my opinions on the author or her work.

Despite Dead of Night’s fast pace and intriguing premise, I struggled to lose myself in its story. Several factors just didn’t work for me, mainly the lack of character depth and the seemingly sporadic plot. I felt overwhelmed by confusion for most of the time, but in those few moments of clarity my frustration at the characters, none of whom I could remotely relate to, was stifling.

Overall, I think the presiding reason I couldn’t enjoy Dead of Night was because the storyline was flat, but fast. By that, I mean that the author had very obviously sacrificed important character-building scenes and subtle tension manipulation in favor of a lightning-fast pace. Unfortunately, this meant that any attempt at reaching a climax fell hopelessly short, because there were no slower, relaxed scenes to contrast the snappy, intense ones. Additionally, he characters didn’t have those slow scenes to communicate their emotions to the reader, and as a result they seemed distant and two-dimensional. Everything suffered as a result of this, and it became increasingly difficult to keep up my energy and spirits as the author threw event after event, plot twist after plot twist, at my head.

One thing I will congratulate the author on is her beautiful writing style. There were moments when her words became pieces of art on the page, and I think the reason I kept reading was to stumble onto those passages every now and again.

1 star

Rating: 1/5

Recommended to: Dystopia fans.

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