Jun 7 2013 2:00pm

First Look: Stephanie Tyler’s Defiance (June 10, 2013)

Defiance by Stephanie TylerStephanie Tyler
Carina Press / June 10, 2013 / $3.99 digital

Rebelling against her legacy as the MC's princess, Tru Tennyson escaped the ruthless, male-dominated culture of the Defiance motorcycle club. Three years later, her newfound freedom is ripped away, thanks to a massive hybrid storm that killed millions. Now, in the post-Chaos world of semi-darkness and near-total anarchy where gangs rule, she discovers the dangerous world of Defiance may be the one thing that can keep her safe.

Tru is at the MC's mercy when she's dragged back to her former home…and to the only man she's ever pictured a future with. Caspar is the bastard son of the club's leader, her safe haven when life got rough—and her onetime lover the night she left. When Tru refuses to trade sex for power and be claimed by a rival club leader, she also dares to announce she wants Caspar instead, throwing the MC into turmoil.

Tru's brazen revolt could start a gang war and destroy the club from within. Now both Tru and the MC must wait for Caspar's response…and the inevitable fallout.

Motorcycle clubs (MCs) and post-apocalyptic worlds are big in romance novels these days. Stephanie Tyler combines these two in her New Adult romance Defiance, a story about two people struggling to find their place in their new world and in each other’s lives. Both grew up as part of the Defiance MC; Tru as the princess of the club, because of her father’s role as the club’s enforcer, and Caspar as the bastard son of the club’s leader. Tru abandoned the club, tired of her abusive father’s behavior, but returned after the Chaos, a cataclysmic weather event that destroyed much of the world’s infrastructure, realizing that she had little chance of survival on her own.

Motorcycle clubs are dangerous, violent and strict worlds. “The rules had always been simple here—you lived and died by your MC. Men were in charge, women weren’t.” When the Chaos hit, the Defiance MC was prepared, having hoarded supplies for doomsday for years in advance. They banded together to become a powerful force in the new world and relied even more heavily upon their own codes. No one could tell the head of the Defiance MC what to do. And now the leader is making some very suspect choices.

Women are protected only when they bond to club members. The bond is more than marriage, it is an oath that ties a woman to a member and is the only real way for women to gain any power. Otherwise, women are passed around and offered little in the way of respect.

Men gain power and respect through violence and might. Scheduled fights are one of the main ways for men to prove their worth and earn their place in the MC hierarchy. Caspar uses this method to become the MC’s enforcer despite the stigma of his birth. By the time Defiance takes place, Caspar is not allowed to fight any longer because he always wins.

Tru takes a big chance returning to the club she abandoned and is almost brutally violated because of her refusal to do what is expected. She refuses to bond with the leader of a rival MC and then adds insult to injury when she refuses to bond with the son of the Defiance MC. Instead, she announces her desire to bond with Caspar, creating serious political rifts.

Tru and Caspar are rebels in an already rebellious world, attempting to use the rules of the MC and their own accumulated power to shake up Defiance and make some fundamental changes to their way of life. The two are at a crossroads in their lives and are determined to do better than their fathers’ generation. They take a stand hoping to bring a new order to Defiance.

The world of Defiance is dark, violent, and often disturbing. Women are treated as objects to be used and abused. There is an implication that even though a bonding makes women off limits to other men, their partners have every right to hit them. The ruling members of the MC also seem to believe that they have the right to brutally assault women, bonded or not. There is a heartbreaking scene in which one of Tru’s best friends is found near death in a political maneuver that ends up being a major catalyst for Caspar and Tru’s bid for change. These two bring hope for a better way of life, although not an entirely less violent one.

Do you like post-apocalyptic worlds? Motorcycle club stories? And/or New Adult romances? Check out this world that Stephanie Tyler brings vibrantly to life in Defiance. This one is a coming-of-age story with a twist and a message about hope and affecting change.

Learn more about or order a copy of Defiance by Stephanie Tyler, on June 10:

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Jennifer Porter, a mild-mannered librarian by day, runs the review site Romance Novel News and is a compulsive romance reader. She has a tendency to live tweet her craziest reads as @JenniferRNN.

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maria babani
1. Chica8
Love MC romance books, but not into distopian books. Probably will not read this.
Vol Fan
2. Vol Fan
Wow, this combines two of my favorite genres! Motorcycle clubs & the apocalypse. I will absolutely be ordering this. Now. So glad you reviewed it, or I probably would not have seen it. Thanks! I've also read Tyler & she is a very good writer. Looking forward to this one of which I assume is a start to a new series.
3. JenniferPorter
I generally feel the same way about dystopian fiction. However, Defiance worked really well for me - which definitely surprised me. I think this one is a fabulous book and I recommend it highly!
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