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Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite
Recruits is a work of fiction in the dystopian, science fiction, and action and adventure sub-genres, and was penned by author Sara Jo Cuff. The work is intended for the young adult reading audience and forms the first novel of the New Haven series of suspenseful adventure tales. Our protagonist is Emmie, a seventeen-year-old girl, who lives under the controlled regime of River Springs where everyone is equal because they’ve been stripped of what makes them unique. So when the chance arises to determine her fate by undergoing the grueling trials of Recruitment, Emmie’s rebellious attitude begins to shine through, and so begins a dangerous adventure to discover her true self.
Author Sara Jo Cuff has crafted a very engaging work of fiction with plenty of thrills, suspense, sci-fi concepts, and interpersonal drama to offer its readers. One of the features which I found particularly impressive about this piece was the balance between the conceptual challenges of creating a whole new world with new laws and rules, but also keeping it balanced and accessible for teen readers to follow the plot with ease. The action treads this line beautifully, with relatable young characters who explore and learn as they go along, making for a wonderfully described and naturally formed voyage of discovery in this bittersweet and dangerous new society. What results is an intriguing, emotive, and exciting start to what promises to be a most engaging series. Overall, I would highly recommend Recruits to fans of dystopian fiction, high octane conceptual thrillers, and YA readers and enthusiasts everywhere.