RUNEBINDER by Alex R. Kahler


From the "Runebinder Chronicles" series, volume 1
Age Range: 14 - 18
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Another post-apocalyptic world gone mad.

Tenn is a Hunter whose tattoo binds him to the powers garnered by the Spheres of Water and Earth, powers that rise in him against his will during an unexpected kraven attack. The monstrous, hybrid kravens and the evil necromancers have despoiled the modern world. The white teen and his comrades live at Outpost 37, a makeshift military post housed in a vacant hotel in Outer Chicago. Following the hunt, Tenn receives an unexpected visit from incubus Tomás, one of the most powerful Howls in the world, a servant loyal to the Dark Lady. For reasons unknown, Tomás wants to capture Tenn, and most of the book is built upon the question of why every powerful figure in the world wants to claim Tenn as their own. The fleeing Tenn is accompanied by powerful Sphere carriers sent to protect him, just the first of many to tell him that he is wanted by the Prophets. The slow build of the story becomes repetitive as it devotes itself to Tenn’s desirability. The plot is at times buried in very graphic details, often sexualized, with too many villains to follow. Tenn’s friends drop left and right, high casualties that leave readers with a Game of Thrones “everyone dies” feel—though without the compelling story. The busyness interferes with what should be a grounded series opener.

Byzantine worldbuilding and high levels of gore plus a muddy plot equal reader dissatisfaction. (Fantasy. 14-18)

Pub Date: Nov. 14th, 2017
ISBN: 978-0-373-21263-7
Page count: 400pp
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1st, 2017


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