18 Dec 2018

Review: Secrets of PEACE (Secrets of PEACE #1)


★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆


From Goodreads:
Nearly 30 years ago, the PEACE Project rose from the ruins of a global war to take power over a new America. Providing stability in exchange for absolute authority, the Project controls every aspect of citizens' lives through each of its five units:

Protect
Enforce
Advance
Control
Eliminate

Raised in the Project since infancy, eighteen-year-old Zira has been trained as an assassin under the stern guidance of unit E-2's Chairman Ryku. After she makes a careless mistake on an assignment, the chairman partners her with Jared, the best operative in her unit. Their partnership transforms into friendship as they work together and learn to rely on each other. But when misinformation causes a solo mission to backfire, Zira's deepest loyalties and strongest relationships are tested in a place where even a hint of doubt can be perceived as treason.

The life she knows is falling apart, and nothing will ever look the same again.

They are taught to follow the teachings and values of the PEACE Project blindly. Never question, only complete the tasks you are given. When you have never questioned anything in your life and are thrust into a situation where the only way to survive is to question everything.

Zira has been in the Project from a baby. Trained to the most secretive faction of the entire Project, the E-2. No one else knows what happens on the E-2 assignments except those inside the faction. No one wants to know the bloody truth behind the glossy front of the PEACE Project.

The beginning of the book is a bit clumsy before gaining its bearings. Zira has completed her training early and is on a mission to kill someone the Project wants to get rid of. How the world became to what it is in the book is explained pretty well and quite early in the book. Of course, not to reveal all of its secrets, some vital information is kept quiet. The entire Project is based on blind trust which to someone used to questioning everything seems like something that absolutely cannot be. 

There were a few characters that were there as only spacefillers and to explain Zira's past. Also, there were a few whose motivations and purpose was a little bit unclear even in the end. Are they on the Project's side or on the other side? 

Most of the characters are mentally weak. Be it their upbringing or just the lack of character development, but they didn't think on their own at all. A slight nudge and they would go in that direction without questioning anything. This really irritated me for most of the book. I get it they are raised to be the obedient followers of the project, but even the most brainwashed kids are not that blind to everything influencing the world around them.

In the end, I liked the plot and the promise of what's to come. The little clumsy beginning lowered my expectations a little, which was a good thing because this isn't one of those white-knuckled-grip-on-the-book - books. It's a good read, something that goes past quite quickly and something you can enjoy when you're in-between books.

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