First and most importantly: This book needs to come with a trigger warning and I haven't really seen many people talk about that up front. This book throws around rape all over the place and is really violent. I can only think of 1 specific scene with sexualized violence (not a rape scene) but rape is threatened a lot. It makes sense in the context of the world as rape is a frequently occurrence in war times and Tahir used her knowledge from working at The Washington Post to write a realistic world on that front, but I wouldn't have wanted to go into it blind.
That being said I really enjoyed the book, it's well written. I listened to it on audiobook and the narration was on point. Laia is young and naive but really believable. She is mainly driven to action by guilt, but really develops as a character over the course of the book. Elias is a solid bad ass, who is also (somewhat justifiably) a huge worrier as he's completely disillusioned by the system.
I'm so glad there is going to be a sequel for this book (I don't know how it was ever going to be a stand alone) because I want to see this more of this world and the characters.