Lune Tatum, the adoptive daughter of this dystopian world’s Supreme Elite, wants out. Out of the walled city that’s been her prison, out of sight of the populace who hate her because of her privilege, and out of the clutches of the father who’s beaten her into submission since childhood. The only way to escape is to win The Elite Trials, but when a mysterious outsider named Bren enters the fray, her past comes back to haunt her. And it might cost her her future.
What I loved:
The world-building was phenomenal. It was nice to read a dystopian novel not set in the ruins of our once-great civilization, but in an actual civilization. Much of the story made me think of The Hunger Games, especially the heart, bravery, and brutal circumstances that Katniss shares with Lune. The action scenes were very well realized, and her and Bren’s tragic history evoked real emotional reactions from me.
What I didn’t love:
That being said, the interplay between Lune and Bren began to wear thin about halfway through. Lune alternated between being captivated by Bren and feeling betrayed by him. Some of the other characters could have stood to be developed further (and hopefully will in future books).
My Final Verdict:
Reactive is a worthy read for lovers of dystopian fiction, especially The Hunger Games. Lune has the right combination of vulnerability and badass-ness, and Bren is just endearing enough to steal a few hearts of his own. Moynihan’s writing style will keep you turning pages until the very end.