Secret Identities. Extraordinary Powers. She wants vengeance. He wants justice.
The Renegades are a syndicate of prodigies — humans with extraordinary abilities — who emerged from the ruins of a crumbled society and established peace and order where chaos reigned. As champions of justice, they remain a symbol of hope and courage to everyone… except the villains they once overthrew.
Nova has a reason to hate the Renegades, and she is on a mission for vengeance. As she gets closer to her target, she meets Adrian, a Renegade boy who believes in justice — and in Nova. But Nova’s allegiance is to a villain who has the power to end them both.
Well it seems that March is the month of villains and grey characters for me!
After having read Only a Monster by Vanessa Len where the heroine is a monster, I dove into Renegades where we are following the story through Nova’s eyes and Nova is…a villain!
I am so glad that I was late to the fandom because now I’ll be able to binge read that series!
We are opening on a dramatic chapter where young Nova, gifted with the power of putting others to sleep, will witness the death of her family at the hand of a tug. Until the last minute, she hoped the Renegades would come save her family but…they never did!
What I loved with Renegades is that nothing is white or black.
You have villains, prodigies that are followers of Ace and part of the anarchists movement. They want every citizen to take their fate in their own hands and not to count on a council of super heroes.
They also want freedom for everyone, to have prodigies respected.
But their means to reach that goal went through chaos and destruction.
Ace was their leader and he was killed by Captain Chromium ten years ago.
Ace was not only a very powerful prodigy who destroyed cities, he was also Nova’s uncle.
The one who saved her and raised her when her family was killed. The one who had been very patient with her after her trauma.
When he was killed, she fled with the anarchists, the villains and they became her family.
Winston , the Puppeteer who made me think of the Joker but with a soft side for Nova. Detonator who was tough as nails and could create huge explosion. Queen Bee and her swarm of bees and hornets, who taught Nova to put some eyeliner on.
Phobia, mysterious and living shadow.
And Cyanide who is making all kind of poisons, selling them to help his friends to survive but who strangely was also a moral compass for Nova.
When you follow the “villains” in their day to day lives, you can’t help but notice that there is also good in villains.
And when you follow the super heroes, the Renegades and see how some sent on an investigation take a sadistic pleasure to torture and intimidate others well you also can’t help but see that every hero has also bad in him.
When Nova, set on revenge, will infiltrate the Renegades and pretend to be one of them, she’ll join Adrian’s team of Renegades.
And… things will get complicated!
Because when you infiltrate your enemies, you create bond, you experience things together. You also discover what makes them laugh, their preferred food… and if the leader of your group is kind, compassionate and very attractive in a nerdy way well, your feelings get fuzzy.
Cue the forbidden love trope that was very well done!
Found family, battle of good vs evil, forbidden love… these are tropes I adore to fin in my stories!
I confess that I had a blast listening to that first book and that I downloaded the sequel as soon as I finished!
Cherry on top: there is a huge twist in the end!
Special mention to the narrator: Rebecca Soler, who is doing once more a stellar job!
Thanks for reading!