Reviews

Review: The Damned Society: Smoke and Mirrors – L.J. Elliott

Synopsis:

Lexia Luccen is a seventeen-year-old girl with a fiery power that is slowly destroying the last fragments of her sanity. Having lost her abusive father, Lexia is left scarred from the way he treated her and by the grief of his death. When she accidentally uses her ability to create a devastating explosion that takes many lives, she is moved from her life of solitude into the hectic youth facility that is Lucida.

Lucida is no ordinary youth facility. It is a secretly run technological agency for supernatural wayward youth, set up to teach them how to control their abilities after they have caused disturbances in society. These youths think that once they have been reformed, they will be freed. However, the truth is a very different story.

Lies, love, and more death await Lexia at Lucida, and she soon realizes that this facility is not quite what it seems. Now she knows she must make a choice: does she finally give up to the darkness that slowly consumes her—like her father did—or does she follow the firestorm that runs through her veins and for once in her life, battle for something?

Time is running out. Lexia needs to make her decision fast, before Lucida makes it for her.

Review:

I received an e-copy of this book from the writer in exchange for an honest review. 

Smoke and Mirrors tells the story of Lexia. She grew up with an abusive father who never learnt how to control his supernatural power. After years of abusing Lexia, he takes his own life. Lexia has an ability as well without ever having the opportunity to learn how to control it, but when she puts the lives of her schoolmates at risk, she needs to face reality and make the hard choice to enter a training facility for people like her. In Lucida she must learn to control her power but she slowly realises there is more to it than meets the eyes and the people behind this facility are up to no good.

I am so honoured I had the opportunity to review this book from such a promising young writer (you can follow Lotté’s blog here). This story gave me so many thrills, it’s absolutely action packed, and with such an eventful plot. 

The main character, Lexia, may come off at the beginning as a bit annoying and maybe too stubborn. However, as you continue to read her story in Lucida, you will appreciate her full character development. The writer did an amazing job, and the Lexia you will meet at the end is such a completely different character, so strong and brave, who finally learns how to look after herself. 

What I appreciated the most about this story is how every single side character was introduced with their own side story and background. I really loved this bit, as so often we don’t get to know other characters outside the main one. Another thing I truly appreciated is the slow build up to the romance. While it was obvious who would have been the love interest for Lexia, the writer slowly created her relationship with… no spoilers. Ahaha! You must read it

I think my only small problem with the story was in the beginning and I kind of wish there was a trigger warning – or I hope I didn’t miss it, ah! This story starts quite strong. I read mainly for escapism reasons and I personally tend to avoid stories about abuse and violence, so the start took me a bit off the rails. However, after you go through the first few chapters it gets better and better. 

It’s an easy (and short) read, it kept me guessing right until the end and I didn’t see the final revelations coming. For the whole story I couldn’t fully trust any of the other inhabitants of Lucida, and I was so right, because the ending left me with my jaw dropped! With flawless writing and dark vibes that reminded me so much of the Shatter Me series, this is a great debut and I can’t recommend this book enough for all the fans of supernatural stories. 

12 thoughts on “Review: The Damned Society: Smoke and Mirrors – L.J. Elliott

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