Cover Image: The Second Rebel

The Second Rebel

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I had to DNF this one at about 70%. I was disappointed, because I loved the first book so much. I think this one continues the story well, but it gets really deep into the different political factions and the war, and there was so many characters POVs, I just lost the thread, I think. I won't share anything about it, because I want to be able to boost the books.
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THIS SERIES CONTINUES TO GET BETTER AND BETTER WITH EACH BOOK. I cannot wait for the third book. This second one absolutely destroyed me.
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The Second Rebel picks up after The First Sister, continuing to be relatable, relevant, and impactful every step of the way.

Amazing Characterization
One of the best things Lewis does with their writing is focus on the characters. If you read The First Sister, you already know that these characters have gone on an extensive journey, leading the reader into unpredictable territory.

That continues here. The fact that Astrid, who was only known as First Sister in the previous novel, has a self-given name speaks volumes. In the first novel, she had no name, no identity to call her own, no ownership whatsoever over her body or self. Astrid has reclaimed her identity by giving herself a name, and she has regained ownership over her sense of self.

Throughout the novel, Astrid’s evolution gives the reader such a thrill because she is rising; she gains strength in every act she does. In addition, Astrid is growing into a formidable character that makes her stand out within the story.

However, Astrid is not the only other character here that goes on this journey. Now we have Hiro. Readers got to know Hiro through his voice recordings in the previous novel. However, Hiro is now an active participant in the narrative.

In the previous novel, their identity and was taken from them at a microscopic level. As they continue to fight for the rights and equality of Asters, they must also rediscover who they were. Hiro’s journey is like Astrid’s because they both lost ownership of themselves and are fighting to regain it. However, Astrid is fighting as a woman for women’s rights. In contrast, Hiro is a non-binary character, fighting for the rights of others like themselves, for others who are thought of as lesser than and taken advantage of.

To see these two characters drive the novel forward is incredible because their journey is impactful and relatable.

Strong Storytelling
The Second Rebel also has a formidable story. As a space opera, it goes between four central characters, giving the reader a good idea of how all their ideals fit together.

At its core, this is a novel about equality and identity. These characters are fighting for the equality of others to end the poor treatment of Asters. It is about regaining identity, about gaining control over oneself without having to make sacrifices.

Lewis addresses women’s rights; they address immigrants’ rights and the rights of the LGBTQ+ community. Their messages are carried throughout the story by the plot’s well-thought-out development and strong characterization and growth.

It is incredible to read a story so impactful because of how relevant it is and how thoughtful the story’s message is.

Final Thoughts
The Second Rebel is astounding and wonderfully written. The Second Rebel is a space opera worth reading with perfect pacing and rising tension combined with excellent characterization and growth.
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In the First Sister Trilogy, Linden A Lewis has done a phenominal job of building a story line revolving around characters that feel real.  She/ They have created a world populated by characters with backgrounds so well built, you "see" them as they move through the story.  This is a skill too few writers have.  

The Second Rebel picks up where The First Sister left us, it's as if you turned the page and the next book started.  The main cast of characters is joined by more family, continuing and expanding the interactions in the conflict.  As we learn more, it becomes harder and harder to set the book down until you just decide to finish it now.  There are so many adjectives that you can use for the story that I'm hard pressed to keep from listing them all.  Suffice to say, if the first two are any example of Lewis' story telling, we are in for an explosive 3rd book!
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I am still reeling from that ending. This is one of those series that takes your breath away with its scope, and somehow the author managed to make this universe even bigger with this book! I love how the stories all tied together in ways that I didn't ever see coming. In this book there are 4 main POVs and each of them managed to have engaging plots that left you wanting more. 

The revelations and various aspects of this universe that were explored just reminded me why this series was such a breakout for me last year with book 1. If you want a sci-fi epic that rich with complex characters and incredible worldbuilding that captures your imagination then this is the series for you.
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I thought I loved First Sister.  The Second Rebel did not disappoint as a sequel.  There was action, beautifully written characters, and twisty surprises.  This series is becoming one of my favorite sci-fi series of all time.  I NEED MORE PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Following on from Linden A. Lewis's brilliant series opener, The First Sister, The Second Rebel maintains the complex character dynamics and interplanetary intrigue that made Sister such a pleasure to read.. With this second instalment of the trilogy, Lewis adds another perspective to the novel. Lucinia sol Lucious (Luce) is a powerful addition to the narrative. Drawn into the conspiracy because of her brother, Luce becomes a willing operative, hoping to help bring down Val Akira Laboratories and help the enslaved Asters. 

Beyond the Asteroid Belt, however, the mysterious Synthetics ponder which side, if any, they will support. In this book, Lewis examines each political system with aplomb, while at the same time creating exciting set-pieces from which our quartet (Astrid, Lito, Luce, and Hiro) must navigate their way around. This is a science fiction adventure series that has been touted as a blend of The Handmaid's Tale and The Expanse. While this is somewhat true, Lewis uses their skills to highlight the plight of enslavement while beautifully examining the nature of identity, gender, and clashes of culture that explode in the third act of The Second Rebel. I cannot wait for the concluding volume.
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Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a free copy, in exchange for an honest review!

A magnificent sequel to an incredible first novel, "The Second Rebel" takes its characters on even darker paths than "The First Sister" did, and delivers a gut-punching ending that feels satisfying while still holding the door wide open for the series' conclusion.
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The First Sister was a pleasant surprise for a book I'd bought on a whim, so I went in with high expectations and the Second Rebel did not disappoint. Linden cruises rather slowly through POVs in the beginning, but the second half is where it really starts to pick up the pace (and intensity).  

We follow the same characters as the First Sister, with the addition of Luce (Lito's sister and my new favorite).  Usually in multiple POV books there's a character I don't like, but this time I truly liked them all and thought they each brought a unique element in their politics, conflicts, sacrifices, etc.  I do wish their tales intertwined a bit more as they all seemed to pass each other like ships in the night, especially Astrid (but I forgive that for the way her POV ended).

However, the fantastic world building really solidified this book for me, a perfect amount of detail without drowning me in it.  Most of all, I love the queer representation on every page.  I am already ready for the next book.
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With gratitude to NetGalley for a free eBook in exchange for an honest review.

I really enjoyed "The First Sister," despite its strong resemblance to "Red Rising" and "The Expanse" series. I appreciated "The First Sister" as being less bloody than the two, and WAY more diverse (in LGBTQ-sense) - the last being enormously refreshing. "The Second Rebel" is the sequel to "The First Sister," but I found it less enjoyable than the first. While the action doesn't let up, the conflicts keep multiplying, and the tension steadily builds up to an explosive (and twisty) conclusion, I felt less connected with the main characters, and that probably is a huge part of my less than satisfactory reading experience.

The author adds a 4th first person POV to the previous roster of Lito, Hiro & Astrid - and that fourth voice is of Lito's sister, Luce. I actually really enjoyed her story, she is a very strong character, and her sibling bond with Lito is quite a highlight of the book. 

I would say that part of my dissatisfaction is how disconnected the POVs were from one another (quite like GRRM's A Song of Ice And Fire in that respect), Astrid's being an especially dissonant voice. In some respect, she felt like a different character - not that characters don't change and develop (they're supposed to!), but her progression felt jarring. Part of it, I suppose, is that her chapters almost completely ignore her previous *personal* history with Hiro/Seito Ren (it's as if those two never fell in love). I have to say, Hiro's chapters also don't acknowledge their mutual history, other than in a impersonal way, and put a lot of emphasis on Hiro's love for Lito. Which in itself is actually very rewarding to a reader, but I felt like I was supposed to forget about the relationship that developed between Hiro and Astrid altogether. 

On the opposite end of the spectrum, I really enjoyed Hiro's introduction to the Synthetics, as it expanded the playing field quite considerably (and added a super interesting character!) - I just hope that the Synthetics will not head the Deus Ex Machina way, solving everyone's problems due to their power. Otherwise, the moral compromises/struggles/sacrifices were portrayed very realistically. And in this series' true fashion, the book ended with some unexpected reveals - one I definitely DID NOT see coming!
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The Second Rebel is a second book in this series by Linden A. Lewis.  If you have not read The First Sister, that is clearly a must.  I had no idea it was meant to be a trilogy (or more?) so as I was getting closer and closer to the end of this book, I was getting worried about thing getting wrapped up too hastily. Not the case, but now I have to wait for the next book to come out. 

This book is set up with each chapter being told from the perspective of a different (rotating) character, Lucinia (Lito’s sister), Hiro, Lito, and Astrid. I enjoyed this method since it allows you to see more of what’s going on in the story. The second book also allows for more character development for everyone we met in book 1. 

Overall, I was pleased but maybe a little underwhelmed with what I read. The first book was so creative and this book felt like the middle book in a series. It helps move us along but we are still not quite to the finish line. Recommend for people who have gotten started on this series.
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The Second Rebel is book two in The First Sister Trilogy. What I loved the most about the first book is the way we got introduced to this world and our three main characters, this book however added in a whole lot more characters, changed up the POV setup that I enjoyed in book one, and added in some really cringy romance. I still enjoyed the bits of world-building and the political intrigue, but I was very disappointed in the overall direction that this book takes. 

I'll definitely be finishing out the trilogy, and I hope that this book was just suffering from the middle-book syndrome that most trilogies seem to have.
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After really loved The First Sister I was a little hesitant that this installation would suffer from "second book syndrome".

Oh boy was I wrong.

I really enjoyed this. We have our regular perspectives, Astrid, Lito, Hiro, and we also get Luce's perspective in this one, which added a lot to this story.

Lewis steps up their game both with the worldbuilding and the character arcs. There was so much that was expanded upon, and it was done flawlessly. I really enjoyed that each of the characters are set up to be in different places, and we get a slow build that leads to a few of them reuniting in the end.

And the ENDING. If you're expecting one simple plot twist, be prepared to have your heart broken. Lewis does not take it easy on you. There are sacrifices made and hardships both won and lost. The last 150 pages were unputdownable, and even the epilogue will leave you on the edge of your seat.

I cannot wait to see how this series concludes, and am so excited to get my finished copy of The Second Rebel next month when this gets released.

Thank you so much to NetGalley and Skybound books for the e-ARC. All opinions are my own.

Official rating: 4.5/5 stars
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When I read a book, I always write a review that day, whether I liked the book or not.  Strong feelings or no.

This one has taken me a while to get to because I'm still processing it.  I want to start by saying this will probably be a rambled mess, but here we go.

I gave book one, The First Sister, a 3.5/3.75 because of the ending. It felt rushed, poorly written, and super bumpy. Even as a debut it was pretty rough. That being said, Linden A Lewis hits their stride in The Second Rebel. I was blown away with the constant worldbuilding, political machinations, and plot threads that were carefully unraveled through this story. The writing was so so good. The pacing was really well done, and there weren't any deux ex machina moments that felt out of place or sudden.

Even the story parts that felt they could have leaned more towards unrealistic in this world had had enough build-up and exposition on them prior for it to be believable as to what happened.

I loved the characters in this. The very flawed, very real characters.  They all had varying motives for getting, roughly, to the same point: freedom for the oppressed. And the development characters went through as they struggled to fight the system was heartbreaking. So much of this story hearkens to the 202 Black Lives Matter protests and the sudden public surge in fighting against racism.  Especially the scenes near the end. I feel Lewis hit the nail on the head with a lot of the stuff about racism/inequality in cultures, and, if anything, this story is just a sci fi deep dive into the capitalistic American society and how it uses people all the time, especially BIPOC people, to use, run over, and toss away in it's broken and defective system of the rich getting richer and the poor getting crushed.

If anything, just read the book for that commentary alone. It's worth all the thinking it'll make you do.

But if that's still not enough to get you to read it, this book is one of the most diverse I think I've ever read. Literally so happy to see a sci fi book taking gender and sexuality so seriously with so much respect to pronouns, even among villain characters. There's no fanfare for this. It just IS. It's so normalized and it's beautiful. Love to see it.

The characters experience so much growth in this story, and I have to say Hiro and Luce stand out the most to me. I wasn't a huge fan of Hiro in the first book. They tended to get on my nerves a lot and felt too coplain-y, but I genuinely loved them in this and how they were such a driving force for so much in the story. Whereas Lito and First Sister really took the stage in book one, Hiro got a lot of time to shine in this, as well as Luce, Lito's sister. I love her so much. I think one of her lines that hit me so hard and really hit home her character was when someone tries to take credit for her being apart of something big and says how she's there for them, and she snaps right back and says that it wasn't because of them that she joined the cause. That, yes, that person may have introduced her to the cause and to another view of the world, but she CHOSE to join. And honestly, we love to see it. I'm so tired of romance being the driving factor as to why characters chose to join sides in fights or rebellions. It's hollow, shallow, and just so not good. With Luce, you really get to see her dive in, head first, into this new era of her life and fight with everything she has for it because she wants to do it because it's the right thing, to her.

So yeah, if you like sci fi space opera-style stories or political drama, or just want a damn good commentary on the American government and capitalist system, read this book. I am so so excited for the third one and I really hope it doesn't let me down.
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Enjoyed the first book but couldn't get into it this time around. It's interesting and written well. Just not for me right now.
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Luce only wanted to be an artist, but her brother Lito is in open rebellion against the Icarii for the sake of the long-abused Asters so when she has a chance to strike a blow for justice she takes it. Meanwhile, Lito’s former partner Hiro, trapped in a body they loathe, stalks one of the semi-mythical Synthetics. And Astrid has advanced from sex slave to First Sister, but she aims to become head of her whole order and tear its corruption out with her bare hands. Space opera at its finest, both grand in scale and intimate in its emotional clout.
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Second Rebel picks up immediately after the events of First Sister and refines the style of the previous story, Adding in new viewpoints to the storytelling of Lito and First Sister (newly named Astrid), the story expands to capture the complexities of what's happening in the galaxy after the climatic events on Ceres in the last novel. I thoroughly enjoyed the unexpected twists of the story and experiencing the struggles with the characters as they puzzle out how to make their solar system a better place for all it's inhabitants. Definitely recommended and I can't wait for the last book in the trilogy!
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I wasn't sure I would love the second rebel as much as I did the first sister, but I was all in. From the very first line I was hooked. Amazing character development in the plot moved so swiftly that I almost forgot that I was actually reading a book.
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That ending!! wow wow wow. Though it took me a bit to get into the book, the pay off was amazing and I cannot wait for the third one in this series.
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What is it with awesome covers lately? I love love love this one.  Once I checked out the description and realized it was the second book in a trilogy, I ran out and bought a copy of the First Sister.  Looking back, I think you could read this one alone, but the first book does a good job of laying down the backstory that makes the second one great.  

Second books in trilogies can sometimes be flat with very little going on.  That is so not the case with this book.  I couldn't believe how much more I connected with these characters this time around.  I found myself holding my breath at times and I definitely cried a time or two.   I'll be over here not so patiently waiting for the third book. 

I received a copy of the book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
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