““Deviants” is a readable dystopian fiction novel. The challenge for any sci-fi writer is to gather from the tropes of the genre and somehow present them in a unique and satisfying way. And at that, I think this novel does a fairly good job.
That said, there are many elements here that we’ve seen in other places: apocalyptic events (Wool), domed cities (Logan’s Run), mutant powers (X-men, Chronicle, etc.), totalitarian society (nearly every dystopian novel), cannibalism (Solyent Green, and others), animalistic humans (think Firefly’s Reavers)…even a version of “The Hulk” makes an appearance.
Yet, the story is engaging enough to keep the pages turning. I was always intrigued enough to keep reading.
Personally, I would’ve liked to see a bit more of the world of Haven before the book became a chase story. Just a few more scenes to really set the tone of the place. Also, a couple of the male characters, Cal and Burn, didn’t seem different enough to me. They sort of blended in my mind. I though the set up for the next book was quite good, though. Makes me wonder what will happen next.
As a young adult offering, I think “Deviants” is solid. If that’s what you’re in the mood for, then Haven’s the place.