Review: The Call by Peadar O Guilín

Challenge criteria: A book recommended by your local librarian/bookseller.

(Disclaimer: I was sent this book by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This has in no way affected my opinion of the book, nor the outcome of the review.)

Blurb:

What if you only had 3 minutes to save your own life and the clock is already counting down…

Three minutes.
Nessa, Megan and Anto know that any day now they wake up alone in a horrible land and realise they’ve been Called.

Two minutes.
Like all teenagers they know that they’ll be hunted down and despite all their training only 1 in 10 will survive.

One minute.
And Nessa can’t run, her polio twisted legs mean she’ll never survive her Call will she?

Time’s up.

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What I liked:

I absolutely loved this book. It’s dark, it’s gripping, and it’s a thrilling concept. I was in the middle of finishing my dissertation when I read this, and I had to put the work aside early to lap this one up.

Any book that has an Aoife as a character is good with me, and there were plenty of other modern Irish names throughout the books. Some readers from outside Ireland may have struggled with them, but seeing names like Niamh, Turlough, names I’d grown up and had friends named so, drew me in deeper.

It wasn’t just the given names that made this feel like home, though. Seeing places mentioned I’ve been to, I’ve studied in primary school geography, I’ve got friends come from. Places like Mallow, Omagh, Donegal, really helped to connect me with this story. With so many books in fictional lands, it was so good to see familiarity.

I loved as well how inclusive the book was. It never seemed as if Nessa’s polio was holding her back, and there was an LGBT couple featured.

What I didn’t like:

I really struggled to find something I didn’t like about this book.

Out of five?:

Five. This book really hit home, and it was like having The Hunger Games or Divergent set in my hometown. Any fans of these dystopian series will love this book.

Peadar told me how the idea for the novel came to be, and if that doesn’t pique your interest I don’t know what will!

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