The Denounced is a new series by author S.J. Sherwood, the first book being “A Grey Sun”. Following Ned, a sixteen year old orphan who’s spent more of his life than he’d like in the system, he’s tough as nails and knows how to survive. That being said, the beginning of the book is his execution day. Named one of the denounced, someone who has beliefs other than the ones that the government has and has claimed he wants to live in the non secular world, he has less than an hour left to live the life he hasn’t even begun. He’s already eaten his last meal, a burger, chips, and a chocolate pudding, some of which he’s never even eaten before. The thing is, he’s innocent.
The world he lives in is a grey dystopia, filled with flaws and crooked laws, and everyone has a number. To be named a denounced person, there only needs to be word that you’ve done what they say. You get a trial, but hardly ever are people proven not guilty. And then they’re executed and forgotten about, showed live on tv to make an example of you, and then you’re never talked about again. That is, until Ned’s execution day has an unexpected bump. Once he’s been hung, someone cuts him down and kidnaps him. He’s enrolled in a prestigious cult-like military school and put into a family pod with five other teenagers in the exact same place as him. And they’re competing to graduate.
This book was a lot different than I expected it to be. I thought, oh another dystopia focused on technology, and boy was I wrong. This book puts very little of the world into perspective. You know what Ned knows, and that’s that. And he’s very young, so what he knows isn’t a lot. I’m really interested in learning more about it in the next book. This being the first book I’ve read from the author, I’m really happy with the story and can’t wait to see what they come up with after this. The characters are everything I wanted them to be, and you could really see them adapt to their surroundings and grow to what they needed to be.
I think what this book is really about is working as a team when you don’t know how to. The characters in this book need to in order to survive, so although they have problems with it, they’re able to when it really matters. I really enjoyed reading this book, and I can’t wait to see them continue to grow in the next book. You can get it here, and here’s a link to the author’s Twitter.
Thanks for reading!