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Posted April 12, 2013
It's not often I encounter a book that takes me a few days to w
It's not often I encounter a book that takes me a few days to write a review for. However, I finished Being Amber three days ago and I'm just now sitting down to put my thoughts to paper. Don't get me wrong, I think Being Amber is the best book I have read in months. Author Sylvia Ryan has done an excellent job explaining this Dystopian society. The depth of the characters was incredible. What Jaci had to endure, being ripped from all she knew and sterilized without a choice had me in tears. How Xander understands her needs, and cares for her selflessly astounds me. OK there is explicit sex, and yes there is M/F/M and BDSM, but in a society of the unwanted, sexual encounters are not for self-gratification but instead as a way to ease pain.
The possibly that this could be a future we are destined to exist in is why I find myself reflecting on this story. Never has a book moved me so much that I had to pause and consider could I live in a society such as this. If it wasn’t for the explicit sex I would say this would be excellent high school reading along the lines of Orwell and Golding. I doubt that was the intent of the author but each person take away from a story what moves them the most.
Being Amber was my first foray in reading Dystopia story and I was not disappointed. A job very well done Ms Sylvia Ryan. I applaud you and look forward to reading the next more from you.
I was provided a copy of the book for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review in any way and the opinions of this review are all mine.
Stars – 5 Flames - 5
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Posted June 28, 2013
Wonderfully Unique & Steamy Start To a New Series
Sylvia Ryan has created an intriguing blend of futuristic, post-apocalyptic, erotic, and ménage themes in the first book in her New Atlanta series entitled Being Amber that sucked me in from the very beginning and has me clamoring for the next installment! Through vivid worldbuilding and immensely appealing characters I was left in awe of what Ms. Ryan created and applaud this unique story. America has gone through many catastrophes and to keep things running they've created different communities whose members are chosen based on genetic markers and IQs. Each community is named after a jewel with the most desirable individuals living as Diamonds while one of the lower classes is Amber. Amber society doesn't deal in currency just credits. They all work for the same amount of credits so there's virtually no crimes since there's no way to better yourself. Unlike the other societies who frown upon physical contact Ambers are highly sexualized from an early age and you often see groups participating in menages wherever you look. There's lots of touching for reasons of just comfort and creating closeness. Unmarried women live with men in their designated apartments who act as brothers and protectors. Women newly brought into the community are automatically sterilized and referred to as "fallow" and revered for their great sacrifice.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Into this harsh community comes Jaci Harmon who was born into a more desirable community, the Sapphire Zone. Her classification means that for the most part she'll have to cut ties with her family. Her future has been determined by the Gov and such drastic changes weigh heavily on her at first. It was heartbreaking seeing such a smart woman deemed undesirable because of the small chance she might exhibit signs of disease. The emotional low she starts at is understandable but as she learns the truths about being an Amber she discovers some positives. Coming from a society where touching/sex is considered slutty, the openness she sees here excites and her, particularly once she meets her roommate, Xander.
Xander Dimos was born into a family of Ambers and still has his mother to count on as family. He's normally a badass in full control of everything around him except when it comes to his mother who brings out his boyish side. He prides himself on knowing how to please a woman but never wants a relationship because of his own genetic secrets. He's immediately drawn to Jaci but is keeping many other secrets from her too. He wants to protect her and for the first time sees her as someone he'd marry if only he'd let himself enjoy happiness. His mission is more important than his heart though, and as a police officer hunting the person killing fallows, his first duty is acting as Jaci's bodyguard. Guarding her body and watching her interact with other men has jealousy rear its head but once she learns the truth about his attentions she pulls even further away from him and puts herself further in jeopardy.
The identity of the killer is kept well-hidden and in fact seems to come out of left field. Their reasons for committing these killings are never explained either which leaves a bit of a cliffhanger. What IS here is a thoughtprovoking story reflecting issues of today involving government interference and class warfare. Along with these heavy issues comes lots of steamy sexual interludes that are nicely spaced throughout the story to enhance the overall storyline. The cast