New Age Lamians (The Lamian Trilogy Book 1) by Didi Oviatt is a unique and addictive YA adventure.
It is becoming increasingly difficult to find a new angle on the post-apocalyptic genre, as the recent popularity of this topic has led to hundreds of new books trying to capture the horrors of a dystopian future. The YA genre has been less inundated with these types of stories, however, and Didi Oviatt’s new novel, New Age Lamians, stands out as a truly creative and engaging story. The premise of the novel is bleak – a planet that has been ravaged by a century of destruction, an electrical apocalypse that essentially wiped out humanity, leaving only one powerful Company standing in its wake.
When Jackson Bellony is suddenly pulled into the twisted world of The Company and their dreams of creating an elite cadre of super-warriors, his life is suddenly no longer his own. Following his serum treatment, his physical and mental abilities are heightened to incredible levels, making him the perfect spy, assassin and agent under the Company’s control. However, Jack’s strong will and desire for truth don’t always make him the ideal soldier. That doesn’t matter, however, because the threat is very real, and it’s coming in the form of a massive serpentine creature with a taste for blood.
Along the way, there is a fair bit of romance and a love interest named Amber, who helps Jack understand who he is and what he’s capable of. We also see that despite his distractions, he still has underlying suspicions about what the Company’s role in this new age actually is. The tension builds towards the close of the book, as the pressure to help save the world begins to mount. Without giving away the dramatic ending, readers watch Jack grow into a man, capable of making life-altering decisions, both for him and others. New Age Lamians is an intense tale of war, betrayal, love, sacrifice and growing up too young in a world that is far too broken.
For a relatively short novel, there is a plethora of action, but one critique is that some of the scenes do feel rushed. Expediting the exposition at the beginning of the book is great, as this sets the stage for the story just enough without boring readers. However, the author could have slowed down a bit in certain later scenes, allowing readers to enjoy the descriptions and progress a bit slower through plot developments and character interactions, rather than pushing quickly to the next action-packed moment or paragraph.
Furthermore, there are a number of spelling and grammatical errors that could easily have been polished and improved by an editor, and those small mistakes do matter, as those moments distract the reader and potentially disconnect them from the story. Generally, Didi Oviatt does a remarkable job of creating a mysterious Dystopian future with well-constructed enemies and a unique premise. Along with her keen sense of character development, this should be enough to ensure that New Age Lamians stands out as a promising start to a unique new series.