Author: Jackie Morse Kessler
Publication Year: 2011
Genre: Fiction, Young Adult, Fantasy
Source: E-review copy from NetGalley
From the cover:
She brought the razor to her inner thighs again and again and again, but with each sting came no release, no comforting numbness that dulled the horror of her life.
It wasn’t enough. So she cut again — swiftly, mercilessly.
Missy didn’t mean to cut so deep. But after the party where she was humiliated in front of practically everyone in school, who could blame her for wanting some comfort? Sure, most people don’t find comfort in the touch of a razor blade, but Missy always was . . . different.
That’s why she was chosen to become one of the Four Horsemen Apocalypse: War. Now Missy wields a different kind of blade – a big, brutal sword that can cut down anyone and anything in her path. But it’s with this weapon in her hand that Missy learns something that could help her triumph over her own pain: control.
A unique approach to the topic of self-mutilation, RAGE is the story of a young woman who discovers her own power, and refuses to be defeated by the world.
As soon as I heard that there were going to be other books in the series after Hunger, I started keeping my eye out for them. That’s why I was so happy when Rage showed up as a review copy on NetGalley – I read it pretty much immediately!
Just like in the previous book, I absolutely loved the concept behind the series. Real life teenagers ending up as the Horsemen of the Apocalypse? Freaking awesome! It’s a whole new way to approach “issue” novels without seeming overly preachy or glossing over the scary bits.
It was definitely easier for me to relate to Missy than to Lisabeth in the previous novel, though that might be part and parcel of my personal struggles as an adolescent. Regardless of whether you can personally relate to Missy’s cutting, though, I think that anyone could relate to the “bigger issues” of her life in the first bit of the novel: the ideas heartbreak, isolation, teenage ridicule, and public humiliation were explored in such vivid detail that you really couldn’t help but understand just how much pain Missy was in.
The personality behind Death (currently in the form of Kurt Cobain) gets fleshed out a bit more in this book, too, which I thought was a neat touch. It was nice to see the different sides of him, and that he can shift depending on what is needed from him; the way he acted towards Missy as she becomes War was different from how he had acted towards Lisabeth when she became Famine, but the differences were more tailored towards their personalities and needs, which was great character development.
Rage won’t be coming out for another few months, but I highly recommend that you get a hold of it – and Hunger – some time. This is definitely a series that I will continue to look out for … I’ve been highly impressed so far!