Faye, forced to become a drug addict at 11, now craves revenge against the men who first fed her Heam.
Heam, or Heaven’s Dream, functionally kills its users, allowing them a glimpse of what appears to be heaven. When drug dealers seeking to punish Faye’s father force-fed the drug to Faye and her friend Christian, Faye saw a hellish vision instead. Her chest covered in the red web of scars that mark survivors of a Heam overdose, Faye has spent the past several years becoming a skilled fighter in hopes of murdering the men she holds responsible for her downfall. Faye meets three people—a young Heam user, the sister of a missing Heam addict and a mysterious boy who pops up every time Faye follows her targets—and she begins to question whether revenge is truly the right course of action. The worldbuilding can be one-note: Readers learn a lot about Heam addiction and discrimination against Heam users, but no other drugs or stigmas seem to exist. Faye’s experience of addiction is also unconvincing. She tells readers that she craves the drug, but only rarely is there evidence of this. Faye’s relationships, however, romantic and otherwise, are compellingly drawn, and the plot is fast-moving and well-structured.
Not perfectly constructed, but Faye’s strong yet flawed character is worth getting to know. (Faye’s training schedule, watchwords, playlist) (Fiction. 14-18)