The Raging Ones by Krista & Becca Ritchie
Publication: August 14th, 2018
Genre: Young Adult Sci-Fi Romance
From New York Times bestselling authors Krista and Becca Ritchie, comes The Raging Ones, an edge of your seat sci-fi romance with twists and turns that you will never see coming!
In a freezing world, where everyone knows the day they will die, three teens break all odds. Franny Bluecastle, a tough city teen, dreams of dying in opulence, to see wealth she’s never known. Like the entire world, she believes it’s impossible to dodge a deathday. Until the day she does. Court Icecastle knows wealth. He also knows pain. Spending five years in Vorkter Prison, a fortress of ice and suffering, he dreams of life beyond the people that haunt him and the world that imprisoned him. Mykal Kickfall fights for those he loves. The rugged Hinterlander shares a frustrating yet unbreakable connection with Court—which only grows more lawless and chaotic as their senses and emotions connect with Franny. With the threat of people learning they’ve dodged their deathdays, they must flee their planet to survive. But to do so, all three will have to hide their shared bond as they vie for a highly sought after spot in the newest mission to space. Against thousands of people far smarter, who’ll live longer, and never fear death the way that they do.
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Thank you to NetGalley, the publishers, and the author for allowing me to review this book in exchange for an honest review.
“We’re together,” I murmur. We’re together rings through us, but we look out at what we face. With the universe at our window and the unknown roping us in—we become one maddened pulse. Raging, raging. Raging.
I can’t even begin to explain how this book made me feel. I loved every minute of it. The thing is I have read all their books before. But both the author’s previous books were all NA books so I know I will love those. This is their first ever YA book and first ever sci-fi fantasy book. So, while I knew I would like it, I did not know I would LOVE it and DEVOUR it. I was consumed and I am HIGHLY anticipating book two. The premise says, “Twists and turns that you will never see coming,” and I can attest to this statement. I did NOT see those two huge plot twists especially the ending and all the little twists and turns. I am still speechless. The only thing I disliked about this book was the cover. A book this good truly deserves an immaculate cover. Let me stop rambling and tell you the plot. The Raging Ones is a three-way point of view told by Franny Bluecastle, Court Icecastle, and Mykal Kickfall. On a freezing planet called Saltare-3, everyone knows the day they will die. Influentials live the longest, Fast Trackers live to about 20 or 30ish, and Babes die incredibly young. Your worth is determined by how long you live and NO ONE can cheat their death day except someone did. Franny, Court, and Mykal are three teens that dodge their death days. This impossible feat somehow linked them all together and they sense everything about each other. In order to survive and keep their secret hidden from probing scientists or Vortker prison, they must leave Saltare-3. They devise a plan to pretend they are influentials (which is treason) and get into the StarDust space program that will be accepting five people to go on a mission to space. It won’t be easy and danger lurks in every corner. That is all I can say because I don’t want to spoil all the goodness.
For the first time, I realize they’ve been my strength, my hope, and they can be my peace. I just have to let them help me.
Franny Bluecastle is a tough street Fast Tracker with colorful hair, piercings, and lives life to the fullest since she is dying anyway. I really loved how interesting Franny is as a character. She is pretty tough in her element but when her world is turned upside down I love how real her emotions and actions were. Her bond with Court & Mykal was so beautiful honestly. The friendship in this book will tear at your heart because the link they share really brings them close. I loved her growth from someone afraid of this new life and not feeling worthy of herself to someone who realized that she was more than a death day and more than a common Fast Tracker. Court Icecastle is someone who knows pain and hides his emotions. He doesn’t have time for anyone else besides the person he is linked with and keeping them safe. He is known as a criminal that broke out of Vortker Prison but he so much more than that. Listen, his growth will tug on your heartstrings. Court is guarded but he is fiercely loyal to those he loves and is immensely protective of them. He has spent so long keeping his emotions bottled that it’s hard for him to let people know them. But when he opens up and my son smiles again it is so beautiful. Mykall Kickfall has been told many times that he is just a brute who won’t amount to anything. He knows how to hunt and live in the freezing cold. He is so precious guys you will fall in love. He is so optimistic and happy. He literally fights for those he loves and will do anything to see them be happy (literally there is a scene that will break your heart in the beginning). He wants to know that he pulls his own weight in the trio and wants to be known for something more. How he treats his friends is so adorable and made me melt. There are also some great secondary characters that I really enjoyed like Zimmer, Padgett, Kinden, and Gem.
“Name this feeling,” he whispers, our lips a breath apart. A feeling that overpowers me, that wraps me up warmly in the coldest hours. Through ice, through snow. A feeling that has never let go. “Love,” breathe deeply.
Honestly as always I really loved their writing. Since they only have written NA contemporary I was not expecting the world-building to be so good. I pictured Soltare-3 with its purple skies and clouds vividly. I felt the cold in my own bones as someone who has lived in the cold before. The way they wrote the link was really cool and interesting. I felt what they felt and I loved how complex it was. I love science and planets so the space talk and stuff were so cool to read about. You can really tell they did their research. I know some people did not like how they wrote M/M in their like us series but wow guys they wrote it so beautifully here. It was so adorable and beautiful. They really improved on writing M/M because my heart melted.
Rest all passions at your heart’s highest court. There, you are the authority of your own soul.
As I said, the romance was M/M and it was handled with a lot of care. You can feel how much they loved and cared for one another it was like breathing. But, I loved how it wasn’t the focus it just was. There was no huge explanation or need for the bells and whistles. All the little moments were wonderful and I love how when it led up to the kiss it was just so ugh perfect.
“You’ve stolen my heart, you little crook.” His smile only stretches further and brighter. “My most valuable theft.”
General Q & A
- Working with another author is hard, let alone WITH YOUR TWIN, what was working together like and how did you address differing opinions on the work? What are your favorite and least favorite things about writing with each other?
We’ve been writing together since high school, so we’ve been able to really fine-tune our process. Being sisters seems like we’d bicker a ton, but we find our bond a huge strength. We understand each other’s vision and welcome varying opinions and ideas. We always describe what we have as a mini “writer’s room” where we constantly bounce thoughts off one another and try to improve our work. When we have different opinions, it kick-starts discussions, which often ignites better stories. Our favorite part of working together is definitely collaborating. We value our time together and our discussions surrounding our projects. Always having someone equally passionate and invested in the book fuels our love of writing. Least favorite part: honestly, there aren’t a lot of negatives! Maybe our three-minute silent treatments when we’re frustrated, and then we make up almost immediately.
- When did you first get the idea for The Raging Ones? What was your inspiration for this book?
Back in college, one of us (Krista) had this concept about a world where everyone knows the die they’ll die, but three teens don’t die on their death day. We’re huge fans of science fiction and fantasy, and we’d written several Young Adult novels that never saw the light of day. But we wanted to write a new story together with new characters, and I jumped on board once she agreed to add a fantasy element. While writing THE RAGING ONES, we were really inspired by character-driven stories with science fiction backdrops. From movies like Interstellar to television shows like The 100.
- THE RAGING ONES is your first YA novel. What made you decide to move into the genre, and was the transition difficult? Was writing in a different genre/for a different age group hard? Was your process different?
Even though THE RAGING ONES is our first published YA novel, it isn’t the first one we’d written together. In our childhood, high school, and college, we mostly only wrote YA. The harder transition for us had been going from writing Young Adult fantasy novels to writing contemporary romance. In a lot of ways, THE RAGING ONES was like returning to something we’d started but hadn’t finished yet. We always attribute our romance books as the reason why we’re better writers, and when we went back to this other genre, we realized how much more we could do and push ourselves. Our writing process is pretty much identical across the map for Young Adult and Adult.
- What is the weirdest thing you had to research for the novel?
Since THE RAGING ONES takes place on a frozen planet, we had to keep jumping down an Animal Planet rabbit hole. We paid close attention to the animals that could exist. It’s not too weird, but there were a lot of times we had to double-check each other and be like, “Cotton isn’t a fabric here” and “You can’t make them eat chicken. There are no chickens.”
- Did THE RAGING ONES have a certain soundtrack you listened to while writing?
Yes! We always listen to music while we’re writing, and we compiled a public Spotify playlist for the book, which includes songs that were in our earbuds as we were typing. We love the dramatic scores from Gravity and Interstellar, but we always say “Keeping Your Head Up” by Birdy is the essence of the book. THE RAGING ONE’s Spotify Playlist.
- What is your dream cast for THE RAGING ONES?
We love dream casting our books and making Pinterest boards! For THE RAGING ONES, we can imagine Lyrica Okano as Franny Bluecastle, Henry Zaga as Court Icecastle, and Noah Teicher as Mykal Kickfall. THE RAGING ONE’s Pinterest Board.
About the Authors
Krista & Becca Ritchie are New York Times Bestselling Authors and identical twins, one a science nerd, the other a comic book geek. With their shared passion for writing, they combined their mental powers as kids and have never stopped telling stories. Graduates from the University of Georgia in Biology and English & Journalism, the twin writing duo now lives in Atlanta. The Raging Ones is their first young adult novel.