Seventeen year old Ollie Miller is ready to leave all of her hurt feelings behind, but moving on seems impossible while living next door to her ex-best friend, Mateo. When curious earthquakes begin to shake and rip open the foundation of her small town, the ground becomes as unsteady as her feelings for him. When they fall, they fall hard…
Ollie’s disastrous attempt to save Mateo’s brother from falling into a curious chasm results in their descent into a cavernous wonderland. Ollie, Mateo, Jesse, and Alexis search for a way back home, and encounter a mysterious tribe of natives. Gabriel, the next in line to lead his people, is granted permission to guide them to the surface. On their treacherous journey, an overzealous elder threatens all of their lives, because he can’t risk them exposing his people, or the power he wields. The group discovers ancient secrets, unexpected truths, and uncharted feelings. Ollie must find a way out or risk being stuck in the caves forever—or worse, dead.
Want to go to Texas? Watch out for the earthquakes and the giant bottomless pits that appear in your backyard and take you to a civilization within our own. Well that is exactly what happens one morning to Ollie, Olivia, and her friends Alexis, Jesse and ex-best friend Mateo. After the shock of finding that the people they thought fell into the hole with him were actually a native tribe living beneath the earth, Ollie and her friends discover secrets, problems and make friends among the tribe as well as they come to realize how they feel about one another.
As a clean, teen read I really enjoyed the story. The characters, though confusing at times, were strong in development so that you could picture them in your mind. The world beneath our own is filled with creatures that are as deadly as they are monstrous. The native people are fearful of strangers and live in a restrictive, medieval, feudal society where men rule and women are property more or less. They are very superstitious and believe their leaders hear the Voice of God to keep their people safe. Each tribal member has a portion of ‘noor’, gift of God that protects them.
The cast of characters, Ollie, Alexis, Jesse, Mateo, Gaberiel and Keren are well thought out and likeable. This was a good read and one I had to find out what happened next in the story.
After emerging from her Descent into an uncharted underground world, Ollie Miller is sure of three things. First, her feelings for her best friend, Mateo, are far from platonic. She can’t even look at Mateo without blushing at the memory of his lips on hers. Second, an evil man named Zadok is plotting to destroy the civilization above the surface. Third, there is no way to save the earth without returning underground. At least this time, she will have her mother along with Mateo and her friends to help guide her.
On their journey, noor, a mystical blessing guides them, but only if they’re willing to follow. Ollie’s determined to save the tribe from their evil leader, even if it means facing off with her long-lost grandfather. As Zadok comes face to face with his runaway daughter and his granddaughter, his plan starts to unravel, but is it too late to stop the destruction that he put into motion? Can the tribe survive and the surface be saved? Will Ollie learn to trust her own heart before it is too late?
Defend is the conclusion to Ollie’s discovery of a lost tribe in Descent. Don’t miss this adventure, brimming with ancient secrets and a thrilling underworld.
The second installment of The Lost Tribes series, Defend takes us back to world beneath our own where we’ll join our friends Ollie, Mateo, Alexis and Jesse, along with Keren, Gabriel as they face the big bad crazy elder Zadok. Oh, and let’s not forget that Sarah, Olivia’s mother, is the daughter of said crazy leader making Ollie his granddaughter.
Crazy enough twist for you? Well if not hang onto your hats as Ollie learns that she can do things with her noor that she didn’t know was possible. The question is can she and her mother stop a madman from destroying both civilizations. As much as I’d love to tell you more, I can’t spoil the read for you. Kallie Ross definitely has a winner on her hands!
As with Descent, much of the story takes place beneath the earth’s surface as Ollie and company try to find and stop her Grandfather from destroying noor, and both worlds in the process. Earthquakes, cave-in and frightened tribal members make their journey fraught with hazard after hazard as well as teaching Ollie about trust, love, forgiveness and sharing of gifts. The transition of the entire race to allow individuals to come to the surface, including girls, and return home is mind-boggling. Then again, when most of the elder population has been killed by Zadok, it isn’t all that surprising. However, I am not looking forward to the next installment to discover what happened to secondary characters of Josiah, Gabriel and whether he is able to share their new way of thinking with the rest of the tribes living below the earth.
Over time Kallie Ross' love for learning gravitated toward studying conspiracy theories and contradictions in our culture. Her conclusions have ignited a passion to write compelling young adult fiction that incorporates legend, conjecture, fantasy, and conviction.
Kallie loves being a wife, mother, friend, writer, and teacher. She began teaching high school English in 2002 and started blogging and podcasting in 2008. She has a brilliant husband, two redheads, and never imagined her life would ever be this fun!