Book Review: Shattered Veil (Diatous Wars #1) by Tracy E. Banghart

16 Jan

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**I received a free e-copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Aris Haan cannot accept that the love of her life has been Selected for Military and she won’t be able to see him for months, maybe years. As Atalanta’s war with Safara rages on, there are more and more causalities. That doesn’t stop Aris from wanting to sign up to be a Flyer with the military. There’s only one problem–women aren’t allowed to join up. Disguised as a man using a diatous veil, Aris seeks only to find Calix–but she finds much, much more.

I want to preface this review with a little bit of back story. I realized, after I requested it on NetGalley, that it was self-published. I sort of wrinkled my nose and downloaded it, because I tend to have some issues with self-published books–that is, I have never read a good one. Until now.

There isn’t a way to properly understand my confusion when I sat down with this book and was suddenly a third of the way through, my husband had kindly turned the light on for me because it had gotten dark outside, and my stomach was rumbling because I’d missed dinner. It was so good! Cue the scramble to figure it out–no WAY this could be self-published–but everything, from the author’s website to Goodreads to NetGalley, seemed to indicate that it was.

The author’s bio at the end of the book said she’d worked toward a MA in publishing, so that’s probably got something to do with it, but I was astounded. Thank you for opening my mind to the realm of self-publishing.

Anyway, back to the book: everything, from plot to characters to setting to writing style was wonderfully executed. I’ve read quite a few “woman disguised as a man” books and this was such a fresh take on it all. Because really, how likely is it that many women would be able to get away with binding their breasts and speaking in low voices all the time? The diatous veil technology provided an answer to the challenges women face when trying to disguise themselves as men, and I loved how it was interwoven through the plot, becoming important in more ways than one.

I loved the development of Aris’ character. At first, as she’s doubting her ability to undertake this great task, you have to wonder how it’s possible too; she doesn’t seem capable. However, first drawing strength from her love of Calix (which some people might find annoying, but having been in a long distance relationship myself, totally understood where she was coming from), she then finds strength in her work and in her new found abilities. I loved watching her change and grow, and I’m hoping to read more about her in a sequel (or two or three?).

Setting was spot-on. A little bit sci-fi, a little dystopian, it had all the markings of great world-building: good dialogue, good use of slang terms, different names for everyday items, a well-constructed society, research about war excellently handled. Loved the concept of being “Selected” for a career path. It’s reminiscent of The Giver, but was just different enough. Speaking from past roleplay experience, I can tell you that sort of thing could really catch on and develop a fanbase, if enough people read this book!

The plot was engaging and fast-paced. Like I said, I couldn’t put it down! It was amazing how all of the different pieces came together so seamlessly, and there were a few twists and turns that I didn’t see coming.

All in all, high praise for Shattered Veil! I highly recommend it to anyone who likes a good sci-fi book.

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2 Responses to “Book Review: Shattered Veil (Diatous Wars #1) by Tracy E. Banghart”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Book Review: Storm Fall (Rebel Wing #2) by Tracy Banghart | More Than One Page - November 30, 2014

    […] To read my review of the first book in this series, Rebel Wing (formerly titled Shattered Veil), click here. […]

  2. 2014: A Year of Reading in Review | More Than One Page - December 31, 2014

    […] Shattered Veil (Rebel Wing) by Tracy E. Banghart ***** […]

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