*I requested to review a copy of this audiobook for an honest review from the author.
William is sent with his mother to a subterranea city, to live for three years while the Repatterning is finishing on land. He is determined to get out of this underground city someway. William is sickened by what he learns his father is doing to the world as he creates his new City Center. William decides to take combat training because of the beautiful trainer, and learns the truth of what Professor Morray, his father, is up to. William will train under Zack and Dru, and when he's ready they will break out of the underground city and stop the massacre that is underway on land. Wanting to get out of the subterranea, William agrees to help them though he doesn't know how much help he'll be for ending an apocalypse. But how is he to fight against his father, even if his fathers plans are destroys so much...
A story told 99% of the time from a male POV, so Ryan becomes the voice of William Morray. He does slight personality variations for the different characters. Simone's writing makes it easy to know who's talking and follow the story along as Ryan vocalizes it for us. Ryan's voice is easy to listen to. I didn't hear any slips in the recording or background noise either. All is clean in the recording.
We get a lot of information of current living, before the City Center and Repatterning, through William in the first chapter. It's a bit of a slow start with this introduction. There was a lot of lead up to when William is shown the truth of the Repatterning. It's in Chapter 6 we learn this, and feels that the story takes off from here. The story drew me in curious to see what happens to William and his friends, and even his father. In the end, after what feels as the big show down, it feels as things slow again. As we are getting the description of science that is created and used in City Center and how William comes to be Chief Morray we know. It was so slow I kept looking to see how many more minutes were left as it felt like it should be over.
The beginning doesn't explain well how we get to William's memories. The description tells us that she's searching the mainframe and comes across them. How is Ava searching the mainframe? We learn in a section in chapter 9. But why are William's detailed memories here? We learn by the end of the book how this comes to pass. But I struggle to connect the leaps made by this young man who turns into the Chief Morray we see in the first book. To me it feels like it was told to us in the end rather than feeling the change happen through the book.
The young characters in the story grow into mature characters with the experiences they live through. They fight to survive. There is an intimate moment with two characters. We also learn of abuse another lived through. They are all making the best out of the world and doing a good job of it as they fight against the terrible change that's happening.
That being said, I'm curious about Morray's past and how it will connect to Ava and Joseph's journey to figure out where Morray's essence is in the Mainframe. I'm even left wondering what Ava will really do to make everything safe for her baby. Will she cross the line?