Rites of Passage is an enjoyable and easy read featuring a tough heroine and an interesting group of characters. Although the mystery is a bit too easily resolved at the ending, it’s still a book with a lot of appeal.
Story: 16 year old Sam comes from a military family – and to fulfill a bet to her deceased oldest brother, becomes one of the first female cadets in a military school with a rich history. But neither of the four female cadets are wanted at the academy and it soon becomes obvious that there are some willing to go to great lengths to keep the all-male tradition. Sam will have to survive more than usual hazing – she may just have to fight for her life. Fortunately, her Drill superior is there to help – if she doesn’t fall for him first.
The prose here is smooth and the story flows well. Sam’s struggles with prejudice as well as the normal difficulties of a military academy are a good read. Several romantic interests appear and Sam will have to learn who to trust and who to avoid in order to survive her first year.
The romance may perhaps be a bit underwritten (and definitely in the instaluv cataegory of ‘where did that come from?’) but I especially appreciated that Sam wasn’t saved by the guys and held her own throughout. As the hazing escalates to remove her, she then realizes she needs the assistance of several individuals – including another woman, which was a nice change. Sam definitely wasn’t a girl who needed the hero to come in on a white horse and save her.
In all, I enjoyed Rites of Passage.