Heartbroken, grief-stricken, and wracked with guilt, seventeen-year-old Evan Taylor returned to the Union, leaving behind the boy she loved.
Now, she and her friends must find a way to do the impossible – warn the citizens of the Union about an impending rebel attack without alerting the government and risking retaliation against her friends in the Ruins.
When every move Evan makes is thwarted, it soon becomes clear she’s being watched. Faced with a daily fight to stay one step ahead of her pursuers, she returns to the Ruins. But life in the Ruins has its own dangers, and soon she’s fighting a different battle – to stay alive long enough to discover the truth.
THE RUINS is the second book in THE UNION series, a young adult romantic adventure set in the near future.
**This book was sent to me in exchange for my honest review**
T.H. Hernandez has done it again! This was such a fantastic read!
It was so great to be back in this world that I had come to know and love in the first book, The Union. And if you haven’t read that book, don’t worry — this is a SPOILER-FREE review!
We are immediately reintroduced to Evan and her recklessness, pretty much right off the bat in this book, which was good because it reminded me about why she aggravated me, but I still loved her. We got to see the familiar names of Bryce, Colin, Jack, etc. Without going into too much detail, this book pretty much picks up where the first book left off. Evan and her crew are trying to figure out what’s going on in regarding to the Unions being involved with the conditions of the Ruins, as well as finding out what’s going on with the pending Uprising.
As I read this book, I still got that same Hunger Games, Divergent, Delirium feel — in the best way possible. So kudos to Hernandez for remaining consistent in her delivery.
The plot in this one is just as compelling as book one, with a bit more information to share, as well learn more and more about what’s going and who’s behind what. The way that Hernandez writes is pure beauty. There was lines of description and dialogue that I had to stop and reread because I just loved how it flowed together. This author definitely has a way with words and stringing them together. It was almost poetic at times.
We are introduced to new characters that, although I don’t think I loved them as much as the first group of characters we met in the first book, I still really enjoyed them. They added a lot to the story and made it way more interesting. Speaking of the first group, while they make a reappearance in this book, I was a little bummed they weren’t in this book as much. It was so great to see them again — it brought a smile to my face — but I was sad that they weren’t throughout more of the book.
When I think about it, I guess it made sense — considering the new characters that come in. There needed to be a balance and Hernandez found it when these new characters.
Also, the one thing I will say that is slightly spoilery is — Willow! Oh my goodness, Willow. And that’s all.
Throughout this book, I found myself wanting to shake Evan because, once again, her recklessness causes a lot more trouble than most people bargain for, but the story was so good, I’m able to forgive because to be honest – that recklessness is part of her charm. Her heart is always in the right place.
Overall, I’d say that this was solid continuation of the story. The plot was fantastic, though a little slower in progression, and the character development was spot on again. I was just excited to be back in this world and back with these characters…
Now, my only question — IS THERE A BOOK THREE???
Rating: ★★★★ 1/2
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About T.H. Hernandez
When not visiting the imaginary worlds inside my head, I live in San Diego, California, with one husband, three children, two cats, and one dog. In addition to my day job as a technical writer and editor, I write young adult fiction. I love the intensity of teen emotions and the way they’re still figuring out life.
When I’m not writing, you can find me with my nose in a book, hanging out with family and friends, hiking, or knitting. I’m obsessed with Facebook, young adult novels, bad lip reading videos, pumpkin spice lattes, microbrewed beers, and the San Diego Chargers.