Rebel Thirds

Jillian Torassa

Average Review Rating Average Rating 8/10 (1 Review)
Book Details

Publisher : CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform

Published : 2014

Copyright : Jillian Torassa 2014

ISBN-10 : PB 1-5300-6804-5
ISBN-13 : PB 978-1-5300-6804-3

Publisher's Write-Up

After the End of All Things, The Ten Colony Council enslaved all of the Third Class Citizens (the Smarts who helped destroy the world) in order to protect the more upright members of the dwindling population.

Jade Doe is one of these Thirds, learning to control her inherent Knowledge so that she can redeem herself by aiding the society in which she lives.

When she learns of a deadly secret, however, she must make a decision: Should she risk her life, her friends, and her very soul in order to bring freedom to all of what's left of mankind? Or should she do as she's always been told and devote her life to the voracious, violent, virtuous First whom she must serve until the day she dies?

About the Author:
Jillian is a nerdy Oregonian who loves stories. Books, movies, TV - anything that tells a funny, real, touching tale is worth her time. Anyone's time, really. She's been writing since she learned how. Her very first book was about a yellow Labrador named Ceilia who fell down a worm hole into a land of talking dogs. It was illustrated with Lisa Frank stickers, and the spelling was so horrendous, it didn't even resemble English. She's since honed her talent, and now she's writing stories that she loves, and she hopes you will love, too.

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Reader Reviews

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Review by Chrissi (211120) Rating (8/10)

Review by Chrissi
Book Source: Purchased
Rating 8/10

There are several themes in YA dystopian fiction with which the reader is encouraged to identify, that all forms of government are self-serving, whether they be government by a single dictator or by a faceless mass; even of the people by the people and for the people can be an ideology in which individuality is unvalued and which is restrictive on some members of society in a greater or lesser manner than other members or groups.

In this society, those people with limited intelligence are held up as most worthy, the first class citizens who deserve the best food and housing. They are employed in menial work and are lauded and entitled, even if they commit crimes against those deemed inferior. Those inferior beings are the more intelligent, those gifted with the ability to learn, and they are divided into the mildly disadvantaged second class (whose occupations include the police and teaching) and the third class citizens with no rights whose lot in life is to be drudge servants for the first class, either directly in their homes or working to provide services necessary for their comfort.

The designation of class occurs in childhood, when children are tested and those deemed third class are separated from their families to be brought up and given minimal education in a state facility to prepare them for their lifetime of atonement.

It appears that at some point there has been a disaster, whether through conflict or ecological crisis is not revealed, but the blame was placed squarely on ‘intelligence’ and carried by those who are identified as having the ability to propagate another disaster. It is a very efficient scapegoating of a group within society, similar to many of the –isms recognisable in society. The distrust of people different to ourselves which makes them blameable for their inherent identities and therefore punishable. Now it suits some people to identify a subgroup of the population and point at them and tell everyone else that it is their fault that they have to suffer blah blah blah, but in actual fact, it is normally a vested interest of the group pointing the finger – jealousy, fear, control, take your pick, but when coupled with violence and power, it is a very effective method of control. So, here, intelligent people feel that they have to atone and abase themselves for the sin of being brighter than those held up as examples of good.

Rebel Thirds is a nicely written catalogue of woe that befalls Jade, whose mother was second class and was killed by her father who is first class. Sent away after her testing, she sees children at the school die from hypothermia because they are denied heat as a form of punishment for infractions, with class censure used as a way of keeping control within the ranks. At the end of their education they are dispersed to different roles and her close friend Michael, who has been attracted by rebel ideology, disappears, maybe ‘over the wall’ but she does not know.

As with any society, there are movements that espouse a different ideology that attract those disenchanted and disenfranchised. Jade meets people such as Gideon (a second who sounds like he was designated due to dyslexia) who introduce her to new ideas and who want to learn but who have been denied opportunity and she becomes a teacher at an underground meeting. Unfortunately, things like getting involved with underground movements tends to be a gateway to a lack of happy-go-lucky events, but I am not going to detail those here.

As an adult I can be a bit annoyed when characters are supposedly clever but then they make seriously dim choices – I find myself yelling ‘no!!’ as they run upstairs to get away from the boogeyman – and whilst I appreciate that it kind of needs to happen so that the reader can appreciate the dire nature of the circumstances within which the characters find themselves, a sort of risk appreciation exercise for less experienced readers, but it can be a bit tiresome as it can feel like the author does not like the character as much as we do.

Overall, this is a likeable book in a thought provoking way (I think I know who the bad guys are lurking behind it all). The author has created a very politically aware novel which deserves to be widely read; it will certainly appeal to readers of the Hunger Games and the Maze Runner series.
Chrissi (21st November 2020)

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