Kindle Scout Winner!
It is said that in the depths of the Underground lies a weapon so powerful it will save the Northern herd from the cruelty slavery has put them under. It is said that anyone who holds the Pulse, holds the power to freedom. It is said… well after so many years, no one really believes it anymore.
18-year-old Javin has grown accustomed to death. His world is surrounded by the ravages of slavery. Burdened by a new ice age, little food and very little fuel for heat, only the strong survive under the threat of nature and the cruelty of the South. There is one hope: a train ride that can’t be missed, because missing it can be deadly. Every day the herd lines up waiting for it to come so that they can feed their families and heat their homes one more day. And somewhere in the Underground lies the weapon that ended all wars. If it is found, the South has promised freedom.
Desperation is the norm and most Northerners would rather die than live. Many say that even the sun has turned its back on them, because it lies somewhere behind the Southern wall. No Northerner will ever see the sun, because no beast is allowed behind the wall the South has built. Javin doesn’t care about the Pulse or the wall. No, his only care is vengeance. He waits for an opportunity to kill so that he can have his life ended and be freed of the torture of this life. That’s the plan until he discovers a new found love and unexpected hope.
As the rage inside his soul cools, Javin finds himself a leader amongst his tribe. He alone must rise from the depths of despair to lead his people and help them find a way back to their rightful place amongst men. A daunting task for anyone living in a world where it is too warm to die, and too cold to live.
33 Degrees will chill you to the bone in this suspenseful new novel by Vincent Robert Annunziato.
Readers will enjoy a main character with the strength and grit of Four, a sidekick with the heart and innocence of Rue, a female lead who is tenacious, beautiful, and damaged; young-adult camaraderie and brutality of Ender's Game; a mystical character full of magical realism and totally unique; and, lastly, a Revolution style mystery to the history of the Pulse.'33 Degrees' is a must read. - M R Pritchard
This is as bleak and savage a dystopian world as any I've entered, its cruelty mesmerizing and violence inescapable. Annunziato's novel ferociously takes hold, and once his unflinching prose closes over your head, you realize with both trepidation and delight that the only way out is through the final page. It’s also a love story that adds touching dimensions of warmth to the narrative. The book's strange contrasts are part of what kept me keen and engaged: the landscape, cold and stark, is still vivid; the protagonist, numb, feral, and alienated, is easy to care about. Secondary characters like Tiny bring vibrant color to the story--no matter how small a part these bit characters play, they all leave the reader with a sense of regret or pathos or momentary admiration, unlike the guards, who are largely as featureless as the relentless setting. If you like your pace heady and action hard hitting, this book will keep you riveted.
I am not one who writes reviews often (I respect those who do them well I guess) but was compelled to write what I loved about 33 DEGREES. I sort of discovered this book by accident via Scout and knew almost nothing when I decided to vote for it. It turned out to be a GREAT surprise. I'll try to be brief, hit on a few main areas and, show why it earned 5 STARS from me (NO spoilers)
-The characters - I don't like it when the author, in what will obviously be a series, tries to introduce us to too many people at once. Here we have a rather simple to follow hierarchy within a few main clans leaving more time devoted to each individual and what makes them unique. Like most, each are flawed and in this "frozen world" Annunziato creates some very dynamic viewpoints and coping mechanisms. Plus development, maturation and overall relationships were designed very fluidly.
-The world - I am a sucker for a good dystopian story and I really love when you are given some but not all of the background to why the world is as it is. Keep it simple. (I loved The Dog Stars for example) You know it's bad and the general problems that exist but a lot of the "why" is a mystery. But here the cause isn't the central focus (yet?). You don't get muddied in that. There is enough to give you a clear picture but no wasted time.
-The Pace - I hope I don't offend or more likely come off as dense but when I read fiction I prefer it to MOVE ALONG. I don't need to know every detail of every hair on everyone's head. No need to describe every step taken to create the perfect ice cream sundae. You made a sundae, good enough for me. I like action and story and character development and 33 DEGREES has it all.
-The Story/Writing - I won't get into the plot at all. I really won't say too much here except this is extremely well written. I didn't see it as too simple, certainly not too complicated, but I think most age groups would be satisfied. NOT to contradict myself above but I DO like "enough" info. I guess a pet peeve of mine (the dolt that I am) is when an author simply holds back too much of the backstory or is vague in their structure. I don't want to fill in too many gaps. Annunziato certainly provided me with enough, start to finish.
33 DEGREES gives you a unique spin on a familiar genre. It's fast, its characters have heart in spades, there are people you can root for and against and there is this fantastically horrible frightening world you can start to explore. It probably left me with more questions than answers...but I am aware of a Sequel AND Prequel in the works so I'm OK with that!
33 Degrees by Vincent Robert Annunziato is a chilling, riveting, harrowing tale that sucks you into a dystopian future rife with anger and conflict that has eventually been frozen over into hellish world so bleak that you find yourself rooting for the wild animals to rip the remains of humanity apart.
Like the world itself, Annunziato’s protagonist is a young man frozen and stripped of most of his humanity, a feral shell of a boy who has forgotten everything in a desperate plea for survival in a world of insanity and controlled chaos.
This story sinks its teeth in you as ferociously as the wolves that prowl the edges or the Underground, rips at your heart and beats you to the point of wanting to give up, and just when you are at that point of nausea, reeling from the sucker-punch – the author manages to almost magically thaw the tiniest pieces of the world and his protagonist and pull you into the dangerous, heady, intoxicating spell of hope.
When I say I couldn’t put this novel down, I mean it in a terrifying literal sense as I stayed up into the wee hours of the morning clinching my kindle and begging for dear life as the relentless prose pushes you along as relentlessly as the rest of the herd. Do I like 33 Degrees? No, but then again "like" is a word best used to describe a tasty chicken salad sandwich or an early season rerun of Friends. 33 Degrees is the kind of adrenaline rush that grabs you, refuses to let you go and ultimately leaves you desperate for more.
"Vincent Robert Annunziato has produced a strikingly bleak vision of the future with the true spirit of humanity at its core, and I'd highly recommend 33 Degrees to fans of realistic survival stories." - KC Finn
Freelance Star picked up my personal story on my 23 year dream to become a published author. Hard to believe I have two published books and am working on my third. Check out this story!
33 Degrees was chosen for publication by Kindle Scout, the new crowdsourcing initiative sponsored by Amazon! It has been a dream of mine to be professionally published and it only took 26 years to do it. I hope you will stop by and take a gander at a very original dystopian, post-apocalyptic view of the future!