Book Reviews From the Vault: The Battlecry Series
You didn’t think you were going to get rid of me that easy, did you?
As is customary with my author interviews, I wanted to include a review of Emerald Dodge’s work. Here’s the thing though. I’ve already read everything she’s published to date in the world of fiction.
So here’s what gonna happen. We’re going to have a Battlecry review-a-thon! That’s right, this post will review each book in the series to date.
Sounds amazing, right?
Well buckle up bookworms, cuz we’ve got a superpowered journey ahead of us!
Battlecry #0.5: Ignite
Jillian Johnson, superhero “Battlecry”, has a normal day ahead of her: stop the man dealing a mysterious and lethal substance on a college campus, save people from getting hit by cars, save children from burning buildings, go on stakeouts with her team, and most importantly, avoid a confrontation with her most dangerous enemy: her leader, Patrick.
Can Jillian survive?
Jill is on a superhero team with several other gifted persons. If fighting crime wasn’t enough, they have to deal with their egotistical leader Patrick, whose selfishness and short fuse have them constantly walking on eggshells or facing humiliating consequences.
However, after Jill finds a mysterious black powder after a stakeout, she must weigh her options. Does she lower her head and take orders from her subpar leader or does she fight for what’s right and embrace who she really is?
This short book was great. There’s a LOT of tension, and the character are very original. While the story was a little short, it’s a perfect lead in to Battlecry and helps explain why Jillian is so conflicted in the first place.
Battlecry #1: Battlecry
For one superhero, the good guys can be deadlier than the bad guys.
Jillian Johnson, known as the mighty Battlecry, was born into a superhero cult. She craves a life of freedom, far away from her violent and abusive team leader, Patrick. With no education, no money, and no future to speak of, she’s stuck in the dangerous life…until she meets the mysterious and compelling Benjamin, a civilian with superpowers. When Patrick confronts her, she fights back–and then runs for her life. One by one, her ex-teammates join her until a new team has formed.
But Patrick will not let his upstart teammates get away so easily. Humiliated and hellbent on vengeance, he waits for his chance to strike back and kill the new team, and he is happy to murder superheroes and civilians alike. On top of that, Benjamin has joined Jillian and her comrades, angering his own lethal family. Jillian’s enemies begin to close in from all sides.
Desperate and in hiding, Jillian must shed everything she thinks she knows about what it means to lead. Can she rise up to the challenge of defeating Patrick? Can she save Benjamin from his family? Or will she die like every other superhero who’s dared to challenge the cult?
On the outside, life looks fine for Jillian Johnson and her super-powered team. They fight crime, maintain the peace, and get all the glory they could ever want. But Jillian’s life is far from perfect.
Superheroes are governed by dozens of unfair, ridiculous rules, ones that hardly make life worth living, and to top it off, her leader is both verbally and physically abusive. However, when Jillian meets a strange young man at a coffee shop, her world is forever changed as she learns what life is like outside the superhero grid and what it takes to be a true hero.
This is the second book of Emerald Dodge’s that I’ve read, and I received a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion free of bias.
This book gripped me pretty much immediately. The action draws you in, and Jill’s superhero teammates all have distinctively different personalities that set them apart. And the powers? Oh, the powers! I like how unique each superhero’s power is, especially Ben’s. The plot makes you keep turning those pages, and the chapters are nice and short for lunch time reading.
Overall, this book had all the action, tension, grit, and romance that I could ever ask for, and I can’t wait to read more from this author.
Battlecry #2: Sentinel
When her team is betrayed by the people she trusts, Jillian turns her back on being a superhero.
Jillian’s supposed to be the hero, and yet, her elders have her on trial as if she’s a villain. If she’s found guilty, she and her team face harsh punishment and destroyed futures. But when the betrayal and treachery of her elders leads her to flee in search of her missing boyfriend, she uncovers terrible information that makes her wonder if he is really who she thought he was.
Her quest for the truth leads her to a handsome militia leader who makes her question whether she’s been fighting for the wrong side all along. Caught up in a secret war against the people who murdered her brother, Jillian will have to decide if she’s really cut out to be a superhero, or if her loyalties lie elsewhere after all.
As Jillian’s search for truth leads to a search for her inner self, she falls into a violent and tragic downward spiral that leaves many people dead. Jillian must face her elders head on and forge her own path in the history of superheroes, or find herself lost to the violence of the war. But denouncing superheroism as she knows it will mean taking on a century-old institution that will do anything–including commit murder–to stay in power.
Jillian Johnson has seen it all; she’s battled criminals, she’s found love, she’s even turned on her own superhero team leader Patrick, ending his abuse and neglect.
But when she is called back to her home camp in Chattahoochee, everything changes. The camp is attacked and the love of her life and a relative have gone missing. Something lies beneath the surface of this attack, but can Jillian find out what it is and rescue her loved ones before it’s too late?
A true die-hard fan of Dodge’s work, it’s no wonder why I rated this so highly. This book was amazing! It had it all; drama, suspense, and most of all, action! The fight scenes were extremely well done and creative, sometimes horrific. I really love how Dodge pulls in all of those elements to her stories.
Dodge definitely keeps you on your toes with this one. I can’t wait to read the next one!
Battlecry #3: Mercury
Brother against brother. Superhero against superhero. His wife has been kidnapped, and now he must decide how far down the road of vengeance he can go.
Benjamin, codename Mercury, is a member of an elite superhero team. Jillian, his wife, has been kidnapped by his soulless brother, Beau. With her life hanging in the balance, now it’s fight or die. Beau believes Jillian knows the whereabouts of JM-104, a compound that renders superpowers worthless, and to weaken his enemies he’s determined to make her talk by any means necessary. Benjamin must risk his life to save her, and then he must destroy what’s left of the JM-104.
But it won’t be so easy. When Benjamin’s team heads after the JM-104 with a ticking clock hanging over their heads, a team of superheroes who specialize in killing other superheroes will be right there waiting for them, just as brother goes against brother with Jillian caught in the middle. In the face of overwhelming odds, will they save Jillian and destroy the biggest threat to their existence? Or will the long arm of hate reach into Benjamin’s heart and destroy everything he holds dear?
Benjamin Trent has done it all. Brought up by a family of supervillains, he’s escaped their evil, demented ways through sheer willpower, teamed up with a superhero team, and saved their lives on numerous occasions. But when his newlywed wife is kidnapped and an assassinating strike team threatens to take the lives of another superhero team, Benjamin must do the impossible. Become a leader.
Can Benjamin do what he never thought he was capable of doing? Can he save his wife’s life and take on the strike team before it’s too late?
Wow, I mean, WOW this book was great! I read a former version of this book, and the final product was an amazing experience! There were so many great twists and turns that had me speeding through those pages.
I can totally relate to each of the team members and really loved seeing them interact with a completely different set of superheroes. I’m secretly hoping for a series on the other team.
As always, the action was spot on, exhilarating, and sometimes gut-wrenching.
For sake of no spoilers, I won’t ruin the ending, but I will say the last 10% of the book had me guessing til the very end. Amazing book, even more amazing author. Can’t wait to read more of her works in the future.
Battlecry #4: Excalibur
Heather Harris, known as the mighty Excalibur, is a superhero in San Diego, and she has a problem: the cult she and her team were raised in has just commanded that she return home to face punishment for someone else’s failures. Her leader Eleazar refuses. The race is on to find an alternative that both saves Heather and allows the team to escape unscathed. The team, known locally as The Beasts, have few friends… and even fewer options.
With the clock ticking down to an uncertain fate, Heather and her teammate Courtney strike a desperate deal with Alejandro, leader of the local gang known as Las Bellas–because Alejandro is not without problems of his own. The malicious and predatory Roberto, a rival gang leader, is prowling around their neighborhood, seeking to recruit every gang to join his own and kill the superheroes. Alejandro agrees to help the team fake their deaths and flee to Mexico in exchange for the credit of supposedly killing the team.
But when swords are crossed and guns drawn, Heather and Courtney realize that leaving San Diego behind means leaving behind the two members of Las Bellas who have captured their hearts. What is freedom without love? What are beasts without beauties? If you enjoyed the sun-drenched forbidden love story and gritty drama of Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo + Juliet and the understated superheroes of Netflix’s Jessica Jones, you will find a new world to fall in love with in Emerald Dodge’s Excalibur.
A superhero’s life is the only one Heather Harris knows. Stationed with her team in San Diego, they fight crime and serve justice. But when the city faces cutbacks, the camps they originated from demand one of them return, and they want Heather.
As the gangs of the city grow more and more restless, and Heather is reunited with a long-time admirer of hers, she must make the impossible decision of returning to the torturous camps she came from or fighting for her freedom.
I have been a fan of Emerald Dodge’s writing for quite some time, and this novel definitely didn’t disappoint. There’s a great balance of action, drama, and superpowers in this book, and I am totally living for it! One thing that definitely stood out is the characters. Each of them felt so relatable and real it was like talking with one of my friends.
That’s a Wrap!
That’s a wrap everyone! Thanks once more for stopping by.
Have you read any of these books before? What did you think? Do you have a book recommendation similar to this one? Feel free to share in the comments, I love superheroes!
If you’d like to learn more about Emerald Dodge and her work, check out the social media and purchase links below.
Social Media/Purchase Links
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