Friday 25 August 2017

Book Review: Secondborn by Amy A. Bartol

Title: Secondborn
Author: Amy A. Bartol
Publisher: 47North
Publication Date: 1 August 2017
Pages: 321
Format: eBook - PDF
Genre: YA/Dystopia
Source: ARC via NetGalley

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Firstborns rule society. Secondborns are the property of the government. Thirdborns are not tolerated. Long live the Fates Republic.

On Transition Day, the second child in every family is taken by the government and forced into servitude. Roselle St. Sismode’s eighteenth birthday arrives with harsh realizations: she’s to become a soldier for the Fate of Swords military arm of the Republic during the bloodiest rebellion in history, and her elite firstborn mother is happy to see her go.

Televised since her early childhood, Roselle’s privileged upbringing has earned her the resentment of her secondborn peers. Now her decision to spare an enemy on the battlefield marks her as a traitor to the state.

But Roselle finds an ally—and more—in fellow secondborn conscript Hawthorne Trugrave. As the consequences of her actions ripple throughout the Fates Republic, can Roselle create a destiny of her own? Or will her Fate override everything she fights for—even love? (Goodreads Synopsis)

Overall, I found Secondborn to be an enjoyable read. Roselle is a strong and complex protagonist in whom I became invested from the first chapter. Yes, in some ways this is standard YA fare--a plucky heroine, a potential love triangle (though not quite), an evil adversary etc.--but it did stand out for me as being well written with some fresh ideas, despite minor echoes of other series like The Hunger Games at times. By the end, I was still keen to read on, so I would be interested in picking up book two in the future and finding out what will happen to Roselle and her friends. If you are a fan of works like The Hunger Games and Divergent, then this is definitely a book for you.


  1. I'm glad to hear you enjoyed the book! I've recently been having trouble enjoying new YA Dystopian books as they've began to feel rather repetitive for me, but this one has me intrigued. I am tempted to give this one a go.

    1. Yes, I know what you mean. I stopped reading YA for a while because I was starting to feel that way. I am now trying a few again but being selective about which ones I pick up.