Fuse is the second book in the Pure Trilogy by Julianna Baggott. I reread my review of Pure, the first book, before writing this review of Fuse, and I was surprised at how ambivalent I was about Pure (http://lookgoodifyoudie.blogspot.com/2012/01/pure-by-julianna-baggott.html) I noted that I almost stopped reading it. At this point in the series I don’t even remember that! I had no trouble getting into Fuse. It pulled me back into the story and the dystopian world immediately. I reconnected with the characters from the first page.
The Pure trilogy is set in the future in the Baltimore area after a terrible series of Detonations have turned the landscape to rubble and damaged everyone not destroyed by the blasts. In view of the ruined city stands a sealed Dome containing survivors who escaped the bombs. It is nine years since the Detonations. The survivors are horribly damaged. Everyone has burns and embedded glass and metal. The bombs had the ability to merge living flesh and inanimate objects. Life inside the Dome has its perils as well, and characters leave the Dome and interact with survivors outside.
This is still a very disturbing series, but I guess I’m used to that now. Fuse has a lot of action, since we already know the characters. Still, we get character development and new insights. My favorite characters are El Capitan, a former soldier now in league with those resisting the Dome, and his brother Helmud (fused to his back since the Detonations), and the relationship between them.
The world of Pure is an unsettling but fascinating place. Fans of the Hunger Games and Divergent series are likely to get absorbed in the Pure trilogy as well.