In her novel, The Revealed, Jessica Hickam has imagined a world in the not-too-distant future where the United States is holding its first presidential election following years of chaos from a war that wiped out many cities and citizens.
Hickam's protagonist, Lily Atwood, is the daughter of the liberal candidate running for the presidency. As a high profile family, they live a life very different from most of America's citizens. They have a beautiful mansion in Washington D.C., a full staff and their compound is tightly guarded by top-notch security. But there is another reason that security is so tight, Lily has recently turned eighteen and some kids disappear when they turn eighteen.
A mysterious organization called "The Revealed" has been kidnapping eighteen year olds and once they're gone, they are never heard from again. Not taking any chances, Lily's parents are keeping her prisoner in their mansion. However, their security is no match for "The Revealed", who have been taunting Lily with letters that they tape to her bedroom window, letters that remind her that her days are numbered.
As she waits to be taken, Lily finds herself falling for Kai Westerfield, the son of her father's rival candidate. The knowledge that "The Revealed" cannot be stopped by security causes Lily to act impulsive and sneak out of the house to carry on her romance with Kai. It's a bit Romeo and Juliet.
As an adult who isn't a huge fan of Young Adult Fiction, this book was okay. Hickam is a good writer and the plot intrigued me, especially the first third, when she was building the mystery of "The Revealed". It is a long build and there was too much angst-ridden-teen-romance for my tastes. The story had a decent twist that I didn't anticipate and Lily was a likable enough character. The story was a hybrid of Divergent and X-Men, which isn't a negative, although it may be too similar to what's already out there to really take off. This is a small complaint, but I didn't like how so many of the characters ( the revealed) had unusual names, it just seemed silly.
Here's the low-down, if I had been in my early teen's, I would have been all over this book. It will do well in the Young Adult market. It will probably be made into a wildly successful movie or television series on the CW. It has that slick vibe. This is the first book in the series and the ending is a set up for the continuation, so there is more to come and these YA series are really popular right now. Hickam may have herself a cash cow with The Revealed.