Blog Tour Review – The Initiation Series by Chris Babu


Hello Lovelies! It has been a very difficult and overwhelming week. My company has been planning WFH, so I have been quite busy. This week we transitioned completely to be able to work from home and it’s been a challenge to get all the kinks and what not working. I’m still getting used to the new phone system, but other than that, WFH has been a relief and I’m happy to be home with my family safe and healthy. That being said, reading and reviewing books definitely took a backseat which is way I’m a few days behind on posting my review for this amazing dystopian series. I know with everything that has been happening with the COVID-19, reading dystopian books is definitely more terrifying, but it’s worth the read and will really make you think about life and humanity.

So, without further ado, welcome to my Blog Tour Stop for The Insurrection, the 3rd book in The Initiation Series by Chris Babu hosted by TLC Book Tours. Although, this is the tour for the third and final book, I’ll be reviewing all three books. I really hope you add this thrilling dystopian series on your TBR.




Publication: February 18, 2020

Publisher: Permuted Press

Genre(s): Young Adult, Dystopian, Science Fiction

Format: Hardcover, 320 pages



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They are protected by lies. He is armed with the truth.

Having survived the Initiation and expedition, one battle remains: the fight for the heart and soul of New America.

Drayden and his friends, enlisting the help of Professor Worth, must find a way back to New America before the Guardians imperil their return. But for these teens, their problems are only beginning. The Bureau, which never expected them to survive the expedition, will do everything in their power to prevent New America’s darkest secrets from getting out.

Drayden’s only hope is the insurrection led by ally Kim Craig. The David versus Goliath battle between good and evil, between truth and lies, will push Drayden to his breaking point and require bravery, self-acceptance, and above all, belief in himself. Backed by the will of the citizens, he’ll need to engineer an ingenious strategy to defeat the all-powerful authoritarians. The question is, will it be enough?




Such a great conclusion! This is truly a fantastic, exhilarating, and must read series for all dystopian lovers! 


Drayden and his friends may have survived the Initiation and Expedition, but they have one more fight to win – take down the Bureau. But, in order to do that, they need allies and decide to join the Insurrection. But, will that be enough to finally defeat The Bureau?

Like I said before, the idea of dystopian societies is nothing new, but Babu has created an important, riveting, and thought-provoking story that will make you think about life and humanity. His writing is fantastic, and I think he’s a brilliant and talented storyteller. I enjoyed exploring this New America and was absolutely intrigued by the world-building in all three books. I found myself completely invested and caring about the characters, and wonderfully immersed in the storyline.

The plot in the Insurrection is full of nail-biting and thrilling moments that had me glued to the pages and had my heart racing. I loved that I didn’t know which way the story would go and that made this even more fun. I also really like that there’s some humor and a few lighthearted scenes. I enjoyed how everything came together in this final installment and while I was expecting a bit more from the ending, I think Babu concluded this series quite well and I can’t wait to read more from him.

Drayden, Catrice, Charlie, and Sidney are fascinating characters and relatable and realistic in their own ways. Even though they are not always likeable and at times frustrated me with their decisions, they do have their own quirks and endearing qualities so by the end, I can honestly say that I will miss them. I’ve enjoyed being part of their journey and seeing them mature and grow into better versions of themselves. The romance is good and had a few swoony moments, but I’m still not very into it.

This has been a fantastic, amazingly emotional, and utterly exhilarating reading experience. I think Babu has created a well-written, addictive, and captivating story that I’m sure will appeal to many readers. The Insurrection is a great conclusion and this series is definitely going on my favorite reads this year. All three books have intrigue, action, friendship, drama, suspense, romance, and all the feels I want in a dystopian series. Really recommend this book/series!!

I received a copy of this book from the publisher and author in exchange for a fair and honest review and for participating in the Blog Tour hosted by TLC Book Tours. All thoughts and opinions are my own.





Everyone is equal. But no one is safe.

In a ruined world, Manhattan is now New America, a walled-in society based on equality. But the perfect facade hides a dark truth.

A timid math geek, sixteen-year-old Drayden watches his life crumble when his beloved mother is exiled. The mystery of her banishment leads him to a sinister secret: New America is in trouble, and every one of its citizens is in jeopardy.

With time running out, he enters the Initiation. It’s a test within the empty subway tunnels—a perilous journey of puzzles and deadly physical trials. Winners join the ruling Bureau and move to its safe haven. But failure means death. Can Drayden conquer the Initiation, or is salvation out of his grasp?




A fast-paced, thrilling, and engrossing dystopian story 

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A fast-paced, heart-pounding, and engrossing dystopian tale, The Initiation by Chris Babu is an intense and emotional wild ride that had me on edge.

Sixteen-year-old Drayden lives in Manhattan, New York which is now New America, a walled-in society divided into 4 different zones. When his mother unexpectedly gets exiled by the Bureau, Drayden sets out on a mission to discover the truth behind her banishment and enters the Initiation, a test with dangerous puzzles and physical trials. Winners of the Initiation will join the Bureau and move into their safe zone, but those who don’t will face death. Will Drayden succeed and find what he’s looking for?

Dystopian stories are some of my favorites to read and this one definitely does not disappoint. The writing is easy to read and very engaging. It didn’t take very long for me to be hooked and get into the story. I like the world-building, the pacing, the thrills, the action, and just never really knowing what was going to happen had me flipping through the pages. While it’s full of excitement and suspense, there are also some nice emotional and lighthearted moments. I don’t want to spoil the fun, but the final challenge had me completely clutching my heart and hoping that everyone would be okay.

I adore Drayden and I like the rest of the characters. They were all quite interesting, realistic, and fun to get to know. However, if I’m being completely honest, they did from time to time get a little annoying and immature. But then again, they are teenagers so it’s kind of expected. I didn’t dislike them, just got a little frustrated with them sometimes. I did like the friendship and the dynamic between the characters, but I’m not a big fan of the romance/love triangle.

All in all, The Initiation by Chris Babu is a fascinating and fantastic dystopian story that hit all the feels for me and I enjoyed it thoroughly. I like the writing style, the world-building is intriguing, the plot is gripping, and the characters are realistic and likeable enough. There’s action, teen drama, suspense, and moments that will make you think. If you love dystopian books like Hunger Games, The Maze Runner, and Divergent, then this book is perfect for you.





Drayden and his friends thought nothing could be harder than the Initiation. Little did they know it had only been a warmup for the challenge that lay ahead.

With New America’s situation dire, Drayden and the pledges venture out into the unexplored world outside the walls, escorted by a team of elite Guardians. The group seeks to contact another civilization in what remains of Boston, but Drayden has secret goals of his own.

Dangers abound in the real world, including Aeru, the deadly superbug that wiped out humanity. While they battle the elements of a desolate landscape, a power struggle emerges within their ranks. The Guardians seem to be carrying out a covert mission themselves, and the quest turns everything they thought they knew about New America upside down.




An action-paced, suspenseful, emotional and terrific sequel!


With plenty of breathtaking action, nail-biting suspense, awesome thrills and unexpected surprises, The Expedition by Chris Babu is even better than its predecessor and I absolutely can’t get enough!

I’m not so sure if I should be reading dystopian books at a time like this, but I’m addicted. While the idea and concept are nothing new and seem a bit familiar with other dystopian books I’ve read, Babu makes it his own and takes readers on an amazingly twisty and thrilling ride. I think it’s imaginative, interesting, and such a well-written story.

Drayden and his friends survived The Initiation, but the tests are far from being over. Now, they must go outside the walls and face new dangers such as Aeru, the deadly superbug that wiped out humanity. With secrets, lies, and unknown threats, can Drayden and his friends live through their expedition?

I think this is an amazing sequel and I enjoyed a bit more than the first. There’s just more of everything in The Expedition and we get to see Drayden and his friends explore the outside world and face new dangers which made the story even more thrilling and entertaining. The writing is superb and addictive. The world-building is great, and I enjoyed seeing the outside world. The pacing is amazing and there was never a dull moment. There’s plenty of action, danger, secrets, excitement, drama, and romance (still don’t really like the love triangle, but it has its moments). There are some unexpected surprises and never knowing what would happen next or who to trust had me holding my breath and I loved it. I really like the character development and getting to know each character a bit more was interesting and fun. I liked the friendships and enjoyed seeing Drayden and the gang go through every ordeal. Again, I won’t get into details and ruin the fun for you, but this is a series you won’t want to miss.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book and I can honestly say that this series is turning out to be so awesome that it’s most likely going to my favorite list. The Expedition is well-written, action-packed, emotional, and a terrific sequel that will keep you on the edge of your seat and leave you wanting more.




Instagram Features

Tuesday, February 11th: Instagram: @bluntscissorsreviews

Friday, February 14th: Instagram: @my_book_journey_

Sunday, February 16th: Instagram: @createexploreread

Monday, February 17th: Instagram: @sweetbookobsession

Tuesday, February 18th: Instagram: @bibliovirgo

Wednesday, February 19th: Instagram: @bookishly_tiff

Wednesday, February 19th: Instagram: @thecityofdarkclockwork

Friday, February 21st: Instagram: @dropandgivemenerdy

Saturday, February 22nd: Instagram: @novelknight

Wednesday, February 26th: Instagram: @theshybooks

Wednesday, February 28th: Instagram: @books_with_bethany

Review Stops

Monday, February 3rd: Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers

Tuesday, February 4th: Write – Read – Life

Wednesday, February 5th: Iwriteinbooks’s blog

Wednesday, February 12th: Instagram: @sjthroughthelookingglass

Thursday, February 13th: The Loyal Book

Friday, February 14th: Instagram: the.magicalpages

Monday, February 17th: Openly Bookish

Tuesday, February 18th: Instagram: @pink.dove.reads

Wednesday, February 19th: PNW Pixie

Monday, February 24th: Shelf-Rated

Tuesday, February 25th: Instagram: @jennblogsbooks

Thursday, February 27th: Buried Under Books

Friday, February 28th: jenabrownwrites

Sunday, March 8th: Instagram: @bookcrazyblogger

Monday, March 16th: My Guilty Obsession

Tuesday, March 20th: Sincerely Karen Jo

TBD: Monday, March 9th: Jathan & Heather



Chris Babu AP

Chris Babu is a lifelong math and science geek, with a math degree from MIT. For nineteen years, he worked as a bond trader on Wall Street. Now he writes full-time, indulging his love of young adult books. He splits his time between New York City and the east end of Long Island, where he lives with his wife Michelle, daughter Lily, and Great Dane Buddy. He’s the author of The Initiation and The Expedition, and can be found at



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Thanks for stopping by lovelies. Be safe, stay home, read plenty of amazing books and tackle those TBRs, and most of all… spend time with your family and loved ones.

Take care and happy reading!!!




3 thoughts on “Blog Tour Review – The Initiation Series by Chris Babu

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