Broken: Book III of the Cage of Lies series by Susanne Valenti: A Review

A dystopian action-adventure story that delivers all the right goods.

Broken is the third book in Susanne Valenti’s dystopian Cage of Lies series. Packed with action, the book continues the story of Maya and Taylor in the world beyond The Wall as the battle for independence and freedom intensifies.

Over the series Valenti has found a better balance for the intersecting stories of Maya and Taylor and their new compatriots. The characters have developed and their motivations, strengths and weaknesses are clearer than in the first book. The writing is competent and the action nearly non-stop; there is little time for contemplation or explanation in Maya’s world. As a dystopian action-adventure story, it delivers all the right goods. I found the plot a little predictable – no spoilers, but I’d worked out the end by about half way through.

In my review of Chained I commented that I felt the world-building was insufficient. While more background has been given over the series, I still find myself unclear as to where some of the items these people have access to – coffee, especially– actually come from. But that is a feature common to more than one dystopian novel or series I have read, and actually doesn’t diminish the action unless the reader allows it to.

Overall, 4 stars for Broken. Cage of Lies is an action-rich series that will appeal to many readers of young-adult dystopias looking for entertainment and the challenge of wondering what they would do in the same situations.

The author provided me with a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

Author: marianlthorpe

Not content with two careers as a research scientist and an educator, Marian L Thorpe decided to go back to what she’d always wanted to do and be a writer. Author of the alternative world medieval series Empire’s Legacy, Marian also has published short stories and poetry. Her life-long interest in Roman and post-Roman European history informs her novels, while her avocations of landscape archaeology and birding provide background to her settings. As well as writing and editing professionally, Marian oversees Arboretum Press, a small publishing imprint run as a collective. Marian is currently writing Empire's Heir, the sixth title in the Empire's Legacy series.

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