Saturday, November 9, 2013

Review - Dehumanized by Michael Loring

Ryan Zachery lived his life the way all high school teenagers should - carefree.

Until he was attacked by an unknown assailer and awoke in the hospital with lycanthropy. Taken by armed guards and dragged away from everything he held dear, Ryan was thrown into a US camp made for those 'suffering' from lycanthropy.

They caged the beast, but now he will show them that he will never be dehumanized.

~ Megan's Review ~

Ryan is a werewolf, infected just after high school graduation in a time where those who have contracted the "virus" are locked up in detention centers, indefinitely, awaiting a cure. The story takes place 2 years after his infection. After his savage attack he is torn away from his family and everything he knows without an explanation and shoved into what is basically a concentration camp. Alone and scared he hardens his heart refusing to think of what he has lost or attach himself to anyone in order to survive. He internalizes his role in his situation, in being infected, and refuses to gain anything more just to have it ripped away from him. Ryan is strong but hard, until the arrival of Anna. Though at first he tries to rationalize keeping his distance from her, so as not to loose anything else, her good nature and strength wear him down before he finally realizes she is his mate. Though there is an element of love with their budding relationship while in the confines of the hell that is their life I would by no means make this out to be a love story.

Unfortunately, Ryan gains extra attention from the guards for his disturbances while defending and protecting himself and Anna. This makes him the target for not only punishment from the guards but forced experiments by the doctors who run the facility.

Ryan and Anna struggle through their situation, horrendous treatment at the hands of the guards, threats by other "subjects" in the facility, and finally by the experiments done on Ryan that change him and the course of his werewolf DNA giving life to a new breed of werewolf. As other characters are introduced to Ryan and Anna's inner circle you see the strength, love, friendship, and comradery grow. There are characters I fell in love with from the start, those I hated from the start, and those who surprised me in the end.

I was asked to give an honest review of this book, of which I was not compensated for in any way, and my final impression is that it is fan-freaking-tastic!! This is by no means your typical werewolf book but a bone-chilling dystopian paranormal read that I could not put down. Michael Loring is a very talented writer who captured the essence of one's need for freedom in confinement while dealing with the struggle of daily existence and the inner turmoil of holding on to ones humanity in a hostile environment where some of the most basic rules can be bent and twisted based on intentions. If you are a lover of wolves and can relish in a little abuse of power by mad scientists and guards alike with the honest struggle for freedom and self-worth of the main characters this book is so for you! I am eagerly anticipating a followup novel to see what obstacles Ryan, Anna, and their friends have yet to face.

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