Title: Retrieve (The Stormers Trilogy #1)
Author: Sarah Addison-Fox
Genre: Young Adult, Romance, Fantasy, Action, and Adventure
Publisher: Double Edged Sword
No. of pages: Kindle Edition, 170
Publication Date: December 26, 2018
Date Read: December 21, 2018
What if the job you took to stay alive might be what kills you?
Kade knows what it is to suffer. He knows what it’s like to lose everything and everyone around him.
His job in a Stormer Unit guarantees not just his survival in the decimated country of Azetaria, but his sister Meg’s. Even if it means facing the Numachi warriors baying for his blood, he’ll do what it takes to keep her safe.
Hadley is alone and surviving the only way she knows how. By hiding where predators won’t find her and scavenging enough just to keep her alive.
When desperation drives Hadley to search for her missing brother, she mistakenly accepts the offer of recruitment into the Stormer’s camp, only to be partnered with Kade and sent as a scout into Numachi territory.
The intimidating young Stormer may just know where her brother has gone. But can they stay alive long enough to find him?
A few weeks ago, I was apart of the cover release for Retrieve by Sarah Addison-Fox. It’s the first book in a new trilogy, The Stormer’s Trilogy. Thanks to that cover release blitz, I was introduced to the synopsis for the story that quickly became one that I couldn’t wait to release. Shortly after, I was given the chance to sign-up for an early copy to review and my request was accepted. I was not disappointed and I can’t wait for y’all to get a chance to read this one.
Retrieve follows two main characters, Hadley and Kade. Hadley and her brother are orphaned after their parents die from a plague. Her brother disappears and Hadley is left by herself in a town and country that makes it difficult for women to have rights unless there is an older male relative able to be there. Since her brother is missing, she leaves her town in search of him and accidentally ends up at a Stormers camp as a recruit disguised as a guy. Kade, in trying to take care fo his sister, has been a part of his Stormer Unit for two years. Recently, he’s had some trouble making retrievals and has been charged with training the new recruits. When Kade’s captain gives him an important assignment for retrieval in enemy territory, he’s floored when the captain assigns him Hadley, one of the new recruits. As the two set off, Kade finds out that Hadley is a girl, and the assignment gets a bit more complicated. Not only are they headed into enemy territory, but they’re headed into territory that will be dangerous for men to travel, but twice as dangerous if they find out that Hadley is a woman. As their mission continues, twists and turns abound, Hadley and Kade become sick and injured, and they realize they’ve been set up to fail. What comes next is a story that will keep you intrigued until the end and will leave you wanting more.
I literally loved everything about this book. Written in the third-person, it aptly reads between Kade’s view and Hadley’s view. We see Hadley’s struggle of missing her family but also, once Kade finds out that she’s a girl, the struggle of making sure that she’s treated the same as if she were a guy. Hadley is headstrong and wants to be useful. We see Kade’s struggle of wanting to make sure that his sister is cared for and safe. Once, Kade finds out about Hadley, he tries to think of her as still another guy to get through the mission but fails as he ends up caring about her and wants to keep her safe as well. As a team, these characters work well together. They truly balance each other out and they make a great team. One of the genres that this book could be categorized under is romance, and I guess that could be true to some extent as I feel like they do begin to have feelings for each other, but they’re feeling that grow over time as the characters spend time together and we don’t really see that completely built in this first book. I’m excited to see where this friendship, partnership, and relationship heads in the next two books.
One of the things that I really liked about this book was the world building. In the beginning, Addison-Fox explains the basics and gradually as we’re reading we’re told more and more about the world, its cultures, customs, and habits. In this book specifically, we get to see two different countries and how they differ. We also get to hear of the turmoil of these two countries and get a slight view into how peace is wanted.
We also see a bit of relevance to our world today. One of the things that impressed me when Hadley and Kade were met by the Prince of the enemy country later in the book. During the conversation, it’s mentioned that they were not all the monsters that Azetarians believed they were. Hadley and Kade’s beliefs about these people that they had been told were killers were wrong. They went into this country with a bias and left with a changed mindset because they listened. Sometimes, we all may hold biases of other people that we believe based on what others have told us and not from our own experiences. We don’t take the time to listen and take the time and chance to truly meet them. After Hadley and Kade met the Prince, they thought differently about the country that they entered and the people there. It may take time, in reality, to reprogram your brain to bias, but taking the time to listen and learn is SO important. I’m really glad that Addison-Fox included this scene in the book.
Retrieve releases today, December 26th, and I really hope that you end up reading it. It’s truly one great book filled with action and intrigue. It was a super quick read for me and I couldn’t put it down. Addison-Fox has created a story that you won’t want to put down and leaves you wanting the next one as soon as you finish.