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The first novel by Mindy Mackay.

In post-renaissance Europe, a brutal genocide was carried out against mutants, resulting in the decimation of the species. Twenty Minutes Into the Future a revolutionary faction called the Paralysis has emerge to enact the mutants' revenge. The leader of the revolt, Isabella Sordeno, returns from the dead and leads the stumbling organization on the path to a bloody coup d'etat of Canada.

Among Isabella's followers is disillusioned hit-werewolf Kiera Graves, who at first wants nothing more but to drink booze and murder humans for the rest of her days. That's until she falls in love with her comrade, Jackson Solomon, an intellectual "prison-addled" psychopath who is determined to save her from her destructive little self. As she becomes closer and closer to the man who has known misery in its deepest and purest forms, she must reevaluate the way she lives her own life, all the while dealing with a Stalker with a Crush and the species barrier, as relations between mutants and aristocrats are not often tolerated in mutant high society. Just as victory seems imminent, Kiera learns from a local prophetess that Jackson is fated to die at her hands.

Readers with weaker stomachs are advised to stand clear.



Contains examples of:

  • A God Am I: Isabella pretty much admits to having a God complex.
  • Agony Beam: The first thing Isabella does once she is resurrected.
  • Ax Crazy: Pretty much the entirety of the Paralysis.
    • And the Fleischer staff, and militant humans...let's face it, this universe borders on violent Dystopia.
  • Beta Couple: Chamika and Vance.
  • Black and Gray Morality: The Paralysis is a combination of the evils of cult-mania and corporatism, headed up by a sadistic megalomaniac and populated by murderous psychopaths, but since the Scandinavian Confederation as an even more sadistic fiend at its forefront and conducts ruthless experiments on people, it's all OK.
  • Blondes Are Evil
    • Actually, the hair colors are Colour-Coded for Your Convenience. Upon close inspection of the text, this troper concludes that blondes are actually anarchic and ruled by chaos (Kiera and Vance); redheads are creatures of passion and emotion who don't often think things through (Chamika and Mercedes, and this troper assumes the rest of the Carsons, whose company is on a downhill slope); and black-haired characters are cold, calculating, condescending, and powerful (Isabella, Jackson, Veronika, and Chamika after the dye job--she's obviously trying to become more cold and calculating and seems to have figured out the color-code algorithm. Hey, couldn't hurt, chickadee.
  • Broken Bird: Chamika.
  • Catch Phrase: "Hey chickadee!"
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: Fleischer and everything that goes on inside it.
    • Like remember the time when Veronika gave Jackson cancer?
      • And then dug it out with a fucking SWITCHBLADE?
    • Or the time she ripped out his kidney?
    • Or her torture of an unconscious Isabella with a Pear of Anguish?
  • Complete Monster: Veronika.
  • Contrived Coincidence: Chamika and Vance just happened to meet each other after they'd already met in prison. Neither remembered who the other one was, and both still dwelled on their love interest in prison--having no idea they were the same people.
  • Dark Action Girl: Every. Female.
  • Dead Little Sister: Dead older sister, in Chamika's case.
  • Deadly Upgrade: Kiera's lycanthropy, with Involuntary Shapeshifting coming standard.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: After Chamika whoops Kiera's butt in the school courtyard over political and ideological differences, they become inseparable best friends.
  • Don't You Dare Pity Me!: "Don't look at me, I don't want your pity."
  • First Law of Resurrection: Isabella
    • It kind of makes you wonder--if Isabella, Dustin, and Vance know the secret to resurrection, why don't they just bring back Jackson at the end of the book?
  • Hates Everyone Equally: Veronika's attitude towards humanity.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Jackson's death. He sacrificed himself to save Kiera, and the worst part is, she was immune to the plague.
  • High Octane Nightmare Fuel: Between the Pear of Anguish, a torture chair, a nephrectomy with no anesthetic, and Kiera cannibalizing her own father, it seems the Mackay is just trying to outdo herself with every passing chapter.
  • Jerkass Woobie: Jackson.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Vance Carton.
  • Loves the Sound of Screaming: Isabella: "I WANT TO HEAR YOU SCREAM!"
    • Kiera during "Silent Screams", anyone?
  • Magnificent Bastard: Isabella.
    • Her manipulating of Vance and Chamika was just plain cruel and could also be taken as For the Evulz.
  • Manic Pixie Dream Girl: Chamika, in spades.
  • Meaningful Name: Kiera Graves: everything she touches, romantically, dies. Check it. Jackson Solomon: slow decay of moral values, destroyed at the hands of a woman...does this troper see Biblical allusions?
  • Murder the Hypotenuse: This is how Kiera and Jackson decide to handle Kiera's Stalker with a Crush.
  • Must Have Caffeine: The entire Paralysis.
  • Nietzsche Wannabe: Veronika.
    • "There's no real justice in this world..."
  • Nightmare Fetishist: Kiera, in a most literal sense. Not only is she incredibly turned on by the horrific scars Jackson received while being tortured in prison, but she thinks his haunting, traumatizing nightmares are endearing and "cute".
  • Opera Gloves: Granted, Kiera has a good reason for using them.
  • Prison Rape
  • Room Full of Crazy: Most of the cells in Fleischer, with poetry written on the walls in blood by crazed inmates.
  • Smart People Play Chess
  • Spanner in the Works: Kiera, when she accidentally unleashes a horde of zombies to not only bring Isabella's empire to its knees, but kill her own lover and pretty much break the world.
  • Squick: See Cold-Blooded Torture.
    • "She removed my kidney..."
  • Surrounded by Idiots: How Dustin feels about the organization in the short time he's in charge.
  • The Cassandra: Anabelle. Jackson convinces Kiera that Annabelle is wrong about his impending death, but as examples have proven, Anabelle is never wrong.
  • The Dulcinea Effect: Played so, SO straight with Jackson and Kiera.
  • Villainous BSOD: Kiera at the end of the story. Somehow, when nothing could impart morality onto her, the death of her lover did the trick.
  • Villain Protagonist
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Kiera and Chamika are this, at times.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: This troper thinks Isabella is the new poster girl for this trope.
  • Wrong Name Outburst: Kiera's boyfriend Kenneth from the first few chapters, after she gets his name wrong twice. (First she tried Evan, and when that wasn't it, she guessed Danny.) Their relationship came to an end within seconds of this.
  • Your Days Are Numbered
  • Zen Survivor: Jackson. The guy gets tortured mercilessly in a death camp and just kind of lets it slide for the rest of the book without exerting any vengeance. Possible Fridge Logic?
  • Zombie Apocalypse
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