IA: B.O.S.S.

IA: B.O.S.S. - John Darryl Winston The first thing that struck me about this new book is the sharp contrast in the covers. Book 2 is dark and ominous making the cover lighter cover for book 1 seem almost cheerful in comparison. The cover is your warning that this book is going to transport Naz and the reader to dark places.

The story picks up mere days after the last one leaves off. With a release of pressure following the events of the previous book, Naz and Meri settle into a slightly more normalized existence. Naz is convinced to join the school basketball team and as a result gains a bunch of new friends. He finally gets a chance to talk with his dream girl, he finds a way to balance his new activities with his responsibilities and for a while life is pretty much typical teen. Then his friend dies in an apparent suicide, yet Naz is pretty sure that it was foul play. He begins to realize that he is being targeted. Things heat up as he investigates until finally the unthinkable happens.

Set against this are the occasional flashback scenes where we finally learn a little bit about Naz's father and the reasons why Naz has no memory of his life before The Exclave. We learn more about his mother and the sacrifices she was forced to make to protect her children. It is no accident that Naz has come to this place and as he learns to recognize his talents for what they are he also must learn who he can trust.

In the previous book we were introduced obliquely to so many really phenomenal characters. In this book we finally get to know them and become invested in their stories. Despite the lines filled in and so many answers coming to light we are still left with many more questions. The main one being who is behind group targeting Naz and how far will this person go to get what they want? While I do not fear for this young man whom I believe will win out in the end, I do want to weep for him. Seriously that is your warning to keep a tissue handy. Dark places indeed.

I gratefully received a copy of this book to review