Format: Hardcover, 304 pages
Release Date: May 3, 2016
Publisher: Entangled: Teen
Genre: Young Adult / Dystopian
Splicer. Laster. True Born.
In Dominion City, once you reach eighteen they're supposed to tell you.
Plague has taken half the population, and the remaining Lasters wait without hope for their genes to self-destruct. Only the elite Upper Circle can afford potentially life-prolonging Splicer treatments. For seventeen-year old identical twins Lucy and Margot Fox, though, the tests never end - yet no one seems to be ready to reveal what they are.
When Margot disappears, a desperate Lucy has no choice but to put her faith in the Plague-resistant True Borns, led by the charismatic Nolan Storm and the beautiful but deadly Jared Price. As Lucy and the True Borns set out to rescue her sister, they stumble upon a vast conspiracy stretching from Dominion's street preachers to shady Russian tycoons. But why target the Fox sisters?
As they say in Dominion, it's in the blood.
True Born is the first installment in author L.E. Sterling's True Born Trilogy. The protagonist of the series is soon to be 18-year old Lucinda (Lucy) Fox. Lucy was born identical and conjoined with her sister Margot Fox. Lucy and Margot are part of what the author is calling the Upper Circle. Margot is wild but charming while Lucy is reserved but bold. The story takes place in a fictional city called Dominion where the plague has twisted humanity forever.
There are three separate groups of people living in this world. Splicers, Lasters, and True Born. Splicers are those who are able to have DNA treatments to lengthen their lives; Lasters are those who have been infected with the plague, and whose days are numbered; True Borns are those who are not affected by the plague thanks to some evolutionary advantage. The main idea that is thrown around in this story is that humanity must Evolve or Die. It's written all over Dominion.
In this world, you are supposed to know before your 18th birthday when you have your reveal party if you are one of the three. In Lucy & Margot's case, however, things are not that clear. Not that clear at all. In fact, I dare say, without spoilers, that are very much in the dark about what they are, and what makes them so different from the rest of Dominion. The sisters have a very solid connection, even though Margot is clearly the more free in her ways and attitude.
When something happens to one sister, the other can feel it. I would have liked to have alternating chapters with Margot's POV since things happen to her that we don't undercover. Margot also seems to understand that things are happening, while Lucy walks around angling for someone to sit her down and explain things to her. The arrival of security expert & True Born Nolan Storm shakes things up a bit. Storm and his entourage help Lucy and Margot navigate the mess that has become their life as the world is slowly burning around them.
Nolan Storm is an intriguing character. I'm curious to see how he's going to help the girls, or whether helping the girls is actually helping himself to bigger things. When Margot goes missing, Lucy fears the worst. She also meets the mysterious Jared Price, a True Born mercenary who has panther DNA and has a tendency to want to protect Lucy even though they are clearly oil and water. Jared's relationship with Lucy is bitter sweet, antagonistic, and twisted. But, I don't see one surviving without the other.
If that weren't enough, there are a group of religious zealots who are aware of Lucy and Margot and would do anything to get their hands on either of them. If you are looking for the worst parents of the year, just take a look at Lucy and Margot's parents who are super awful. The girls are nothing but pawns to be played in order to keep the power they already have. Since I've read the first two installments, and have the third in que to read soon, I shall say that this story leaves a whole lot of unanswered questions. While there isn't necessarily a cliffhanger ending to this story, it pretty much guarantees that you must read the next two to find out what makes Lucy and Margot so special, and why everyone from Tom, Dick, and Harry have plans for them.