Seventeen-year-old Alek is no one special—just a Bronze-Souled Artisan like his family. But he’s desperate to scrape together enough money to flee his father's abuse, along with his mother and brother. On the night he finally does, his father stabs his mother right in front of him. In a surge of emotion, Alek’s true Soul reveals itself. And it’s not the artisan Bronze it should be—it’s Silvered-Gold, which means Alek is a Guardian, the warrior elite mandated to remain in his city or face execution.
Alek refuses to leave his family unprotected, so the Guardians offer him a deal: if he successfully assimilates as a Guardian, they will keep his father in prison. If he doesn’t, Alek’s family will be in danger again. The pressure’s on, and the more Alek learns about his new class, the more secrets he uncovers. Like the Gold-Souled Guardians who can manipulate and bend reality, and the Criterion, a test that will determine his successful assimilation—and the fate of his family. Passing it requires Alek to outwit a Gold-Souled assassin, to prevent the Guardians from starting a war, and to overcome his greatest fear: becoming abusive like his father.
OF METAL SOULS is RED RISING meets SHADOW AND BONE in the vein of Plato’s THE REPUBLIC and will appeal to readers of Sabaa Tahir and Tomi Adeyemi.