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Untitled Beauty (Somewhere-in-Between #1) by C.E. Wilson

Thursday, October 13, 2016


Source: I received a free ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Genre: Science Fiction, Dystopian
Format: eBook
Publication Date: October 13, 2016

Back Cover

Eleven. A name. A title. A sentence passed. If you aren’t a Beauty, you’re less than a person. You’re a commodity known as a Potential… and you only have so many chances to qualify as a human being.

In her seventeen years, Eleven has seen the best and worst in humanity. She’s been passed around and abused by the bad. She’s hoped and dreamed for the good. And she’s despaired for the hand she’s been dealt. Now she’s been purchased by a wealthy man who has the ability to improve her life and help her become a Beauty – if she can put up with his erratic and controlling personality for long enough, that is. Complicating things is the appearance of a stunningly beautiful young man with amethyst eyes who treats Eleven to the rarest form of attention for a Potential: kindness.

Does Eleven trust her powerful owner to help her escape this life of servitude and enslavement, or does she gamble everything on the enigmatic young man who seems to offer her more than she could ever imagine possible?

Review

The story takes place in a world where looks are everything. If a person is considered as flawed, that person lives a life of servitude and abuse. Our protagonist, Grace (a.k.a. "Eleven"), is considered an eleven, a rarity; however, she can also speak well, so she is viewed as a priceless commodity by collectors.

After having several abusive owners, Grace ends up with a new owner who has the means to help her become a Beauty; however, he is a twisted, controlling, and unstable person who makes a point of demeaning her whenever possible. Honestly, she cannot stand him, but he is her only hope of escaping a life of servitude and abuse; she resigns herself to making him happy until another source of hope comes along in the form of a Beauty, Reese, a young man who shows her kindness and believes that she deserves a better life.

Will he help her escape this life of abuse and servitude, or has he given her hope for nothing?

Wow! I am pretty blown away by this book! Wilson has taken the gloves off and pulling no punches when discussing social issues such as slavery, prejudice, othering, different forms of abuse, and oligarchism. Seriously, if you are not seeing some parallels between the book and our current society, you are reading the wrong book.

I thought that the character creation was on-par. Grace vacillates between resenting the circumstances that she is forced to live in and wondering if she is worthy of having a better life. This is typical of a person that has suffered long-term emotional and physical abuse; it is to be expected, and I was impressed by Wilson's ability to accurately portray this. Reese's character also seems to have been well thought-out as he alternates between empathizing and becoming frustrated by Grace's ever-changing perspectives.

Honestly, there were times that I felt extremely uncomfortable when reading this book because Wilson discusses the abuse that Grace endures. She does a great job of conveying what Grace is about to endure while avoiding the horrific details. It was tough to read how Grace was forced to debase herself in the hopes that her current owner would help her better her ranking. However, I also got the distinct impression that it was Wilson's intent to make her readers uncomfortable with what was happening to Grace. Some readers are going to squirm and empathize with Grace, and others will be shocked; either way, it forces readers to think about the people and the system that are running the society.

I could go on for days about the parallels and how Wilson addressed them, but I will not. What I will say is that I like science fiction with social commentary in it, and Wilson has definitely delivered it in a well-executed, unique, and flawless book! I look forward to reading more of this series in the future.

Untitled Beauty was just released today, so check out the reviews for it and grab your own copy of this amazing book!

Add Untitled Beauty by C.E. Wilson to Goodreads, book review, On My Kindle Book Reviews    Buy Untitled Beauty by C.E. Wilson on Amazon, book review, On My Kindle Book Reviews

C.E. is holding a release day event on Facebook today and tomorrow, so check it out and enter the contest to score some really awesome prizes!

About C.E. Wilson

C.E. Wilson, author, Untitled Beauty, Somewhere-in-Between, On My Kindle Book Reviews
C.E. Wilson, author. Courtesy of Goodreads.
C.E. Wilson was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, grew up in Millersville, Pennsylvania, and has been living in Pittsburgh since 2009. For the first few years living in Pittsburgh, she was an English teacher. Her first book, "Oath of Servitude," was published in 2012. In 2013, she quit teaching to be a full time author and hasn't looked back since. She loves spending time with her daughter and husband.
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Are you a sucker for social commentary in science fiction? Do you think it defines the genre? Let me know in the comments.

Enjoy!