Jagged Scars #1
“Sixteen year old Wendy never knew the world before the Starvation. She’s learned to put her trust in her knives, and her confidence in her fighting ability. When the Skinnies attack her compound, she’s the lone survivor.
Injured and near death, Wendy is rescued and nursed back to health by mysterious strangers. Her saviors offer her a place among them, but trust has never been one of Wendy’s strengths, and suspicion soon leads to evidence that these people might be the group who killed her family.
The decision to get her revenge, and take the settlement down from the inside out is easy. Keeping her distance from those she must befriend in order to make it happen proves to be much more difficult.”
Thank you to the author, Jo Schneider, and Olivia (who organizes the Review Chain) for gifting me with a copy of Fractured Memories in exchange for an honest review!
I really liked this book, contrary to what you might think as you see my star rating. It has lots of fighting and mystery and a dystopian feel which I love. There was just one big sticking point for me.
1. The plot. The plot is set up very nicely and alternates between intense fight scenes and funny exchanges between characters. I read this all in one sitting! There was also plenty of mystery embedded into the plot and it kept me interested to see what would happen. Wendy starts out in her home compound, struggling to survive. Skinnies attack and she survives because of her trainer, Pelton. She’s discovered and taken to another compound and is accepted into the new community. The destruction of her home weighs on her, however, and she just can’t seem to put it behind her. As you can see it, has the classic mentally injured but physically strong MC which completely worked with the plot.
2. The characters. As I mentioned above, the MC is that typical strong hero with a dark past. I loved being inside of Wendy’s mind and seeing how she reacted to different events. She experiences new things in the new compound and her reactions are wonderful. I also loved her interactions with the other characters as she struggles to warm up to all these new people who may or may not have caused the destruction of her old home. The one thing I wish there was more of in this entire book is enemy contemplation and development. While Wendy is in the compound, I feel like there isn’t much focus placed on her trying to figure out what happened and if the new people are responsible or not. It just comes up near the end, sort of by chance. I also wish there would have been more development on why the person who caused everything did it in the first place. It felt kind of like a cop-out and wasn’t really convincing. It kept me from understanding the other side and their motivations which is essential.
3. The settings. I loved the concept of this book. The Skinnies are the ‘enemies’ of this world and they’re regular people who ate contaminated food which makes them crave meat and nothing else. The imagery of the world is described brilliantly and I loved the macro-world in general. I do wish there was more conversation on what happened to cause the Starvation (the whole catalyst event) and, just in general, a little more backstory. The micro-worlds, on the other hand, were set on very well which, when there’s a lot of fighting scenes, can be difficult to maintain. The author kept every room stable as the characters moved within it.
4. The writing. I like the author’s writing style quite a bit. They make sure to keep it consistent and know when and how to speed up the pace when there’s a need. The writing flowed wonderfully from one scene to the next and there weren’t many, if any, awkward bumps in the road.
The Final Verdict:
Overall, a very well executed post apocalyptic novel with positively stellar fight scenes. There could have been much more development on the enemy side to build up the divide, however.
Meet the Author
Jo Schneider grew up in Utah and Colorado, and finds mountains helpful in telling which direction she is going. One of Jo’s goals is to travel to all seven continents—five down and two to go.
Another goal was to become a Jedi Knight, but when that didn’t work out, Jo started studying Shaolin Kempo. She now has a black belt, to go with her shoes, and she keeps going back for more, because hitting things is fun. An intervention may be in order.
Being a geek at heart, Jo has always been drawn to science fiction and fantasy. She writes both and hopes to introduce readers to worlds that wow them and characters they can cheer for. Post Apocalyptic survivor stories are one of her favorites, as illustrated by her five book JAGGED SCARS series.
Jo lives in Salt Lake City, Utah with her adorkable husband, Jon, who is very useful for science and computer information as well as getting items off of top shelves.