Forty-five years ago the Flares wiped out our power grid which subsequently ruined the already unstable infrastructure causing Energy Wars among the various corporations, and forcing many people to barely scrape by a living.
Nina and her team are the librarians of the future. Not only serving the community they've built in Atlanta by protecting and sharing knowledge, but also making sure they can all survive. When Captain Knox of the Silver Devils comes to Nina with the veritable Holy Grail of finds Nina knows it's too good to be true, but also knows she can't turn down the job.
Ever since Knox and his group of super soldiers turned rogue instead of blindly following the corrupt orders of the Protectorate he's had one objective in mind: to keep his team safe. When a genetic modification they all have starts to malfunction and their doctor is kidnapped, Knox is told to trade their lives for Nina's. At first, the task is simple enough, but as their groups work together and traverse the rough new world, they each begin to question what they truly stand for and how much they're willing to compromise.
Deal with the Devil was one of my most anticipated books of the year. It has a lot of strong positive marks for it, but at the end of the day, I felt like I was reading an overly long prologue to the series.
I struggled throughout in really connecting with the characters and I think it's because everyone is kind of playing a role, to themselves and in front of others, that it's difficult to see the real characters until closer to the end of the book, which makes me really excited for the next book, but left me waiting for this particular story to really get started. There were a lot of starts and stops as to where I thought the storyline was going particularly with the whole idea of Knox trading Nina as part of the ransom for his men's lives. I felt like what is started in this book is more of a setup of the world and learning about what (or what) is the real villain of the piece.
But I overall like what is started in this first book. I loved Nina and Knox's groups coming together at first as opposites but then recognizing their similarities. That they're willing to fight for those they care about and for their communities. Honestly, I was more intrigued by the possible secondary romances started here than I ultimately was with the attraction between Knox ans Nina. I like them together and I look forward to seeing their relationship grow, but much like the overall issue of not being able to connect with the characters I couldn't really connect with Knox and Nina's romance, I think, because, again, they hold themselves back from each other for the majority of the book. So it was hard to root for a couple when there is so much unsaid between them. By the end it's better though and I'm honestly wishing the next book was out already because now that things are established, I feel like there can be so much potential.
For me, it's a fine start, it's good and it's worthy, but I just think it was preemptive for what's to come next. It didn't really hit the ground running, but briskly walking for me. But by the end it was picking up speed.