Friday, February 14, 2014

Rex Rising by Chrystalla Thoma

Elei's Chronicles #1
     "In a world where parasites create new human races, Elei leads a peaceful life — until a mysterious attack on his boss sends him fleeing with a bullet in his side. Pursued for a secret he does not possess and with the fleet at his heels, he has but one thought: to stay alive. 
     His pursuers aren’t inclined to sit down and talk, although that’s not the end of Elei’s troubles. The two powerful parasites inhabiting his body, at a balance until now, choose this moment to bring him down, leaving Elei with no choice but to trust in people he hardly knows. It won’t be long before he realizes he must find out this deadly secret — a secret that might change the fate of his world and everything he has ever known — or die trying."

There was something strangely fascinating about this book. I don't know if it was the writing, or the story. But I kind of love this book. In a world where everyone carries at least one parasite in their body, and a race of women called Gultur carries the Regina parasite, a parasite that makes the need for men to reproduce unnecessary, making them think they are goddesses, controlling everything and everyone. A movement called the Undercurrent hopes to strike back against the regime.

Eles (or Elei as he goes by) carries two parasites in his body. Telmion, which causes snake-like skin to grow on the body bouts of dehydration, nausea (most cases don't end well) and Cronion a deadly parasite that keeps Telmion in check and visa versa, but also infects the brain, controlling certain hormones enabling strong adrenaline rushes  as well as taking control of one eye giving the infected infrared vision. The combination is rare and most people keep their distance. But things for Elei, a boy who doesn't even know how old he is, and just lost his mentor and boss Pelia, the woman who raised him. You kind of can't help but instantly love Elei's character and care what happens to him, when we meet  him he is bleeding half to death. Trying to get across the strait in hopes of finding safety with a contact that Pelia gave him, Kalaes.

 He is also quite a lovable character, he takes Elei, albeit reluctantly, under his wing very much like an older brother would. Kal was also raised by Pelia, and for an unspecified number of years they take in other "strays" and clean them up give them a place to stay and food, ect. But after Pelia left Kal to take care of the other children on his own he has grown some-what of a chip on his shoulder about it. Trying to live a normal life, he has a job and a girlfriend, Maera.

Shit hits the fan pretty quickly, hardly a day after Elei stumbles onto Kal's door the fleet of Gultur soldiers show up at his place looking for Elei, burning the place down. Now Kal, Elei and Maera are on the run, and soon find help from an unlikely person, Hera. A Gultur, a member of their army, and a spy for the Undercurrent. She had been tracking Elei since the shooting that claimed Pelia's live and wounded him. None of them are too quick to want to trust her but with so little options, they do. But when Elei starts to have strange symptoms he starts to wonder who actually shot him and with what, it starts to effect his hearing and vision enhancing both, and starting to fight off the Telmion parasite.

More shenanigans, lots of running and hiding and a startling revaluation about the new parasite infecting Elei's body as well as the motives of one of the members of the group send the ending to this book to an exciting conclusion. There are 3 (or is it four? I saw post about there being a fourth book, but it's not grouped with the rest on goodreads) in this series, and I definitely will be reading the rest. With it's interesting plot great characters and intriguing world, what's not to love?

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