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Pure by Julianna Baggott

Many of the books I’ve come to review on this site are the result of social media hype (I follow a lot of bookworms and literary types and sometimes things sink in). Pure and it’s follow up Fuse (Books 1 and 2 of a trilogy) were one of the hypes I had noticed. As in most cases, it wasn’t unfounded. Pure is astoundingly good!

Pure is the post-apocalyptic tale of a world that has been devastated by Detonations and divided the population into two main groups: Pures and Wretches. Pures are a select elite community, unharmed by the Detonations as they reside in a protective Dome. Wretches are everybody else who survived outside the dome, fused to whatever they were closest too at the time; objects, animals, other people. Life outside the Dome is perilous. Threats include Groupies (groups of people fused together), Dusts (people and animals fused to the earth) and Beasts (strange hybrids and animals with fusings).

Pressia Belze, a girl with a doll’s head for a fist, has lived a hard and dangerous life on the outside and dreams of a life inside the Dome, safe and cared for. Whilst inside the Dome, Partridge plans his escape from the strict regime of the Dome, a place that isn’t a perfect as people think. Unknowingly bound together, fate will see to it that Pressia and Partridge are destined to change the world.

As the story unfolds, we start to see the divides that characterise the Wretches and the Pures. All the characters are so well devised and individual, with their unique burns and fusings. I particularly like El Capitan and Helmud, brothers who are fused together; their relationship is comical at times but can also be quite heartbreaking.

Julianna Baggott has created a hauntingly striking world in which she explores themes of identity and society. Unsurprisingly, the film rights for the trilogy have already been sold, and what epic movies these tales will make! This is a truly original story that keeps you gagging for more.

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