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Title: A History of Madness
Author: Rebecca Crunden
Publisher: Independently Published
Genre: SciFi | Dystopian
Publication Date: July 13th, 2017
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TW/CW: Slavery | Mentioned Rape | Mentioned Miscarriages | Talk of Abortion | On Page Abortion | Murder | Abuse
In the midst of dealing with the wretched – and to him unbelievable – loss of the only thing he ever loved, Nate found himself loving the woman who loved his brother almost as much as he did.
A History of Madness Synopsis
The four remaining fugitives are now spread across the Kingdom. And with the fate of the others unknown to him, Nate Anteros prays for a fast execution.
Yet execution does not come. After a meeting with the King which leaves Nate questioning his sanity, he’s sent to a workcamp in Argon Basin for five years of hard labour. It’s there that Nate learns what became of his friends upon their arrest.
And as his strength returns to him, and he’s plagued by dreams which are much too real to be ignored, Nate decides five years is far too long to wait …
A History of Madness Review
A History of Madness is the next book in The Outlands Pentalogy and takes place immediately after the events of Kitty’s book, A Touch of Death. This novel is in Nate’s point of view and I absolutely adore him more after reading this novel. Seriously, I love Nate. If A Touch of Death didn’t make you love him, A History of Madness definitely will.
After waking up in his cell in Redwater after the events of the first book, Nate Anteros is sent to the work-camp in Argon Basin. His death sentence has been changed by King Markus and Kitty’s father. Instead of death, he must complete a five-year sentence of hard labor though building a new city within the Kingdom. Initially, Nate goes along as he has no information of what has become of his friends. After fellow inhabitants of the work-camp tell him of Kitty’s fate, he (of course. being the loveable shit head he is) is determined to escape and make it to Kitty and rescue her, as well as learn the fates of the siblings; Tove, Zoe and Evander. This decisions leads to the rest of the events of the book.
Nate’s perspective really delves into his passion and his extremes. He is healing from his past slowly. His relationship with Thom is explored, as well as the depth of his love for Kitty. He struggles with the responsibility of making sure that the girls have everything they need and coming up with a way for them all to escape Cutta to get to The Outlands. I really see his character development through these novels and I hope that the twists in this novel don’t set him back. Kitty, oh my heart. She goes through A LOT in this novel. I cannot fathom how she stays so determined and as she says grows into this wonderfully strong character. I imagine that the next book, she will struggle a lot more, but also heal from the ordeals she has been through. Their romance is so raw and beautiful. It’s not easy for either of them. Nate is so consumed by his emotions and is so passionate. But at the same time, Nate treats Kitty so tenderly and is so compassionate for her. He puts her ahead of himself and would do literally anything for her. I hope their relationship stands after the reveal at the end and looking forward into the next book.
Zoe and Tove, my beautiful sisters are healing from the events at the end of A Touch of Death, and moving forward. Tove with her observant eyes and curious brain, and Zoe with her fierce protectiveness and ability to make the hard choices. I hope we get some more development of their characters. The books would not be the same without them, I want more. Ciara, oh, Ciara *insert tears*. When we were briefly introduced to Ciara, Kitty’s best friend, in A Touch of Death, I’ll be honest, I didn’t really think of her much after. She seemed to enjoy her life in the Kingdom and her Complement. After this book, oh my heart breaks for her. i hope we see more of her and her story through the next books, even if she stays a side character. We are also introduced to some new characters and perspectives scattered throughout the novel, including Engus, a completely new character, and King Markus.
The world that Rebecca has created is truly immersive and the flow from the first book into the second books was flawless, even with the change of perspectives. The title is suggestive of some of the content in this book. As Nate’s story unfolds, more of the history of the Devastation and the formation the Kingdom of Cutta is revealed. I had to take a break to breathe at this part, it was so intense.
A History of Madness contained some major twists that will both surprise you and change your idea of the Kingdom of Cutta and how things actually are. This book has some heavy topics dealt with in it, including slavery, rape, miscarriages, abortion, murder and abuse (mental/physical/child), but Rebecca’s writing about these topics is phenomenal . If you can handle the content, A History of Madness is definitely an amazing read. I cannot wait to get into the third book and the head of the next POV to find out more about the Kingdom of Cutta and what has happened to this character.
I would like to thank Rebecca Crunden for sending me a free copy in exchange for a fair and honest review.
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About Rebecca Crunden
Rebecca Crunden is an indie author of fantasy, science fiction and romance who lives in Cork, Ireland. To date she has published one series, three standalone novels, a novella and various short stories. Her most recent novel, These Violent Nights (2021) is set in a futuristic world that blends fantasy and sci-fi.
The Outlands Pentalogy
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