This book picks up a littler over a year after Book 1 ended. Benjamin Bjorn is still a man of power and still married to an Achiever (Jenny) who got pregnant and had his child. While North America has settled somewhat into the new regime, rumblings are occurring across Europe – their Welfies want the same things. Also, the Middle East and Asian countries are wanting to expand their territories into Europe, needing more resources for their large populations. War is imminent.
Honestly, I was lukewarm on Book 1 and I am the same with Book 2. There’s still a good pacing, the story line having a nice mix of politics, action, some quiet contemplation, and sexytimes. I enjoyed the various betrayals as that mixed things up a little. Bjorn is no longer the underdog but he still champions them.
Again, the plot lines were pretty predictable. I never worried that our heroes would be killed or that the bad guys would get away unscathed in some manner. We did have several more cultures involved in this book (which I liked) but their portrayals in the book relied heavily on dated cultural stereotypes (which made things predictable and a little boring).
There were some additional ladies in this book and we even had a female Prime Minister for the UK. However, nearly all the plot decisions were made by men and most of the women were incompetent. Contraception, or rather, the lack of it, came up several times throughout the book. The responsibility to hold off on reproducing was always laid at the woman’s feet. This struck me as an oddity for this story: The world as a whole is over populated; there are several types of contraception available to both men and women today; this is set in the near future where there would be more types of contraception available if anything. So I didn’t get why our hero Bjorn was putting all the blame on Jenny and none of the responsibility on his own shoulders. It was a recurring theme throughout the book and it struck me as a dated idea. Perhaps even a sexist one.
One of our female characters does get to carry the day at the end, which was nice. However, it felt more like an apology for making the ladies so inconsequential for 1.8 books. I still liked Uncle Will, though we saw less of him in this book. There were a handful of other characters that had their moments. Over all, it was a little more disappointing than Book 1, American Revolt.
I received this audiobook at no charge from the narrator in exchange for an honest review.
The Narration: David Dietz did a fine job with this book. It called for plenty of accents, had a sizable cast of characters, and required emotion from time to time. He did a really good job with all the various accents. He also had distinct character voices for all the different characters.