Book Review

Review & Giveaway: Socialpunk

Synopsis (from the author’s website):  Ima would give anything to escape The Dome and learn what’s beyond its barriers, but the Chicago government has kept all its citizens on lockdown ever since the Scorched Years left most of the world a desert wasteland. When a mysterious group of hooded figures enters the city unexpectedly, Ima uncovers a plot to destroy The Dome and is given the choice between escaping to a new, dangerous city or staying behind and fighting a battle she can never win.

About the author: Monica Leonelle is a well-known digital media strategist and the author of three novels. She blogs at Prose on Fire ( and shares her writing and social media knowledge with other bloggers and authors through her Free Writer Toolkit (

The Review: Ummm, wow! I was hooked from page one and gobbled this book up in almost one sitting. At the onset, Socialpunk throws readers into a world not unlike The Matrix. Fans of cyberpunk will recognize the slightly dystopian with a heavy dose of techno-addiction feel of the tale. Taking place in 2036, the world Leonelle has created is eerily familiar to that of today, enough so to make the events seem possible, even probable. The story moves at a rapid-fire pace and had me furiously turning (okay, swiping) from one page to the next. Ima is a heroine and a kick-ass one at that. Smart and snarky, hard around the edges but quite vulnerable underneath it all, Having always thought there maybe more to her world than what her government is telling her, the reality of what is actually out there comes as a shock but not a surprise to her–allowing us to skip over all the tedious convincing that sometimes comes along with tales of this type. If I have any complaints, it would be the ending. I am not a fan of the super cliff-hanger ending–my copy of Catching Fire went flying across the room at the end. This is the first in a trilogy and book two is not terribly far away, readers will be thankful for that. In short, what are you waiting for–go get your copy now! If you’re still not convinced, check out the excerpt below (and then check out the giveaway).

The Excerpt: 

After playing God for six years with the world he created, he couldn’t control any of his subjects, none at all. Over the years, he had watched them evolve and become the sum of their own choices rather than the sum of his; and for that, he regretted ever giving them life.A small, blinking red light from just inside his eyelid reminded him of the news they sent him earlier that morning. The company had cancelled his funding and would shut down his project within three months. According to them, the project cost too much and took up too much space, and the inconclusive results couldn’t be published reputably, now or in the future.Six years of his work, tens of thousands of lives at stake—and he could do nothing to save any of it. He bowed his head, letting his chin rest on the rim of his breakfast smoothie. The smoothie reeked of powder—crushed pills—but he supposed he had better get used to it. He wouldn’t be able to afford the luxury of real food after they canned him.He closed his eyes and called up the camera view of one of his favorites, number 3281. She fascinated him; he couldn’t deny it. When he had designed her, her pre-teen rebelliousness lit fire in her eyes. A survivor, he’d thought. He’d meant for her to have it all—to grow up, to get married to the love of her life, and to have a beautiful family of her own someday.But he had only given her sadness so far. Instead of creating a strict father, he had given her an abusive one. Instead of creating a loving boyfriend, he had given her a friend who could never love her. And instead of creating a strong, proud mother, he had given her a meek one, who watched the whole thing unfold and did nothing about it.He looked at his last and final creation sitting in the chair across from him—his own son, not awakened yet. The law forbade him to have any children of his own, so this boy would substitute.But he had done the unthinkable with this creation—he had bestowed on it his own thoughts, emotions, and decision-making processes. He’d given the boy his own mind, his own physical characteristics, his own wants and desires.He had never done so with any of the others because of the dangers of investing too heavily in any one of his subjects. But who could he kid? He had not stayed objective thus far, watching some of his subjects more closely than others, wishing for the happiness of some at the expense of others. He had become an abomination, a monster of his own doing, who had created subjects only to watch them suffer.He couldn’t forgive himself; not now, not ever. His eyes lingered on the vial that sat next to his breakfast smoothie, that he’d stowed away for the day when they destroyed all his work, his entire world. He would save it, tuck it away for now, for as long as he could protect them. When things spun out of his control, he would drink it and end himself the way he had ended them.In the ancient stories, gods frequently gave their sons as gifts. Now, he would give his son as a gift to her, number 3281. So she could be happy in her last months on earth, before they destroyed her with the rest of them.

The Giveaway:Rafflecopter giveaway

Full Disclosure: I received a copy of Socialpunk as part of the blog tour in exchange for an honest review. My thoughts in the review are my own. The excerpt, synopsis, author blurb, and pictures are property of the author & borrowed with permission.

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