________________ CM . . . . Volume XXIV Number 2. . . .September 15, 2017


True North. (True Born Trilogy, Bk. Two).

L. E. Sterling.
Fort Collins, CO: Entangled Publishing (Distributed in Canada by Raincoast Books), 2016.
292 pp., hardcover & Ebook, $23.99 (hc.).
ISBN 978-1-63375-595-6 (hc.), ISBN 978-1-63375-600-7 (Ebook).

Grades 7-10 / Ages 12-15.

Review by Chris Laurie.

*** /4



“There’s talk among the Gilt that a new, experimental cure is being developed in Russia.”

I try to contain my shock. Heart tripping madly, I stutter, ‘Th-there’s always someone yapping about a cure. Sure as not it’s more snake oil. And anyway, what does the Gilt know?”

“Maybe you’re right.” Turner cocks his head. Marcus leans over and whispers something in Turner’s ear before discreetly backing away. “But as I hear it-and I hear a lot of things, Lucinda-there’s more to this cure than snake oil. And one of the men behind it, they say, is a well-known power from Dominion.”

I start to shake. Shoving my hands under my thighs, I swallow hard before I answer. “You think this man is my father.”

“I do.” He nods solemnly.

“And that’s where you’re heading. To where you’ve heard he is.

“That’s right. And where are you headed, Lucinda?” Turner puts his hand on my knee. Marcus comes forward, a troubled V creasing his forehead.

“Time for Miss Fox to go, sir. You’re not to overextend yourself. Doctor’s orders.”

Turner gives his Personal a foul look but pulls his hand back. Marcus stays where he is, looming over me with his wide shoulders.

I stand and smile wide. Turner blinks as though he’s been blinded. “Where am I going? Same place as you, I reckon. Thanks for the drink.”


True North is the second book in the “True Born” trilogy, the first book being True Born which introduced readers to the world of Dominion City and twin sisters Lucy and Margot. A plague has descended upon the population, and those that are left are divided into three groups. Lasters are those who cannot afford treatment, Splicers are those rich enough to keep up with the procedures that prolong their life, and the True Born are genetically immune to the plague, somehow mutated with animal DNA.

     Lucy and Margot are identical twins who are nearing their eighteenth birthday where they are expected to go through the "Reveal". At a reveal party, it is announced whether each member of society will become either a Laster or a Splicer. But after numerous rounds of testing, no one will tell the twins what their future holds.

     True North picks up shortly after Lucy has been abandoned by her family. She is in the care of Nolan Storm, the leader of the True Born, and is relying on them to help her find Margot. However, when Storm backtracks on his promise to rescue Margot, Lucy takes her fate into her own hands and sets off for Russia with her True Born bodyguard and love interest, Jared. In Russia, there’s been whispered rumours of a cure…

     While the first several chapters are frustratingly slow, the strength of this second volume is watching Lucy’s character as she continues to mature and discovers an increasing self-confidence. She learns that she can trust her instincts even when others try to discourage her from doing so. An intriguing new character, Alistair, is introduced. Not knowing whether it’s a wise choice, Lucy takes him into her confidence, and they embark on finding Margo. Now, readers finally begin to see the rest of the world and begin to learn more about what is happening. Piece by piece, secrets are revealed, slowly slipping into place in a puzzle that is nowhere near completed.

     This middle novel feels a bit stretched, especially in the first half. However, it more than makes up for that as the action picks up once Lucy begins to take control of her life. There are many questions to answer in the next and final book, and this reader can’t wait.

     L.E. Sterling is the author of cult hit YA novel The Originals (under pen name L.E. Vollick) and the urban fantasy Pluto’s Gate. Originally from Parry Sound, ON, L.E. spent most of her summers roaming across Canada in a van - inspiring her writing career. She currently lives in Toronto, ON.


Chris Laurie is an Outreach Librarian at Winnipeg Public Library.

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