A World Divided
Black Rose Writing, December 2019
It is pertinent to preface this review by sharing my wish-list for turning A Book into The Best Book.
1. Characters I attach to like Velcro. The kind that pop into my head, even when it isn’t buried in the pages, and evoke a wide range of emotions.
2. So well written that I simply slide along the sentences. But not smoothly.
3. Must have razor-sharp turns, tummy-flipping twists and a reveal so shocking, it hits like a giant wave of ice-cold water— from out of nowhere.
4. The story itself must be its own kind of special. Something shiny-new, but with a pseudo-nostalgic, familiar feel. A couple of chuckle-worthy lines, a few to bring tears.
Resistant by Erika Modrak, doesn’t stop at checking each box; it fades my Kodachrome-color fantasy into a sad little stick-figure drawing.
Set in two drastically different worlds, separated by only miles and an impenetrable wall, this Young Adult dystopian marvel unfurls from different viewpoints, each providing a part of the big picture.
Cat and Abel are both fortunate—albeit the reasons are not the same—to live in the Dome. The great Dr. Grayson heads up and cares for The Community. He oversees order and all efforts to find a cure for the Virus. He generously provides basic essentials—beyond the vaccination—for this elite group. Protection, too. Under his watch, they are safe from the few survivors on the outside who have most certainly become criminals, quite possibly cannibals.
Wren and Ryder reside in a comfortable, if rough-around-the edges, camp with other folks that have somehow avoided the Virus. Not absolutely isolated, though. Ryder has managed to make a connection with someone inside the walled city, and periodically speeds away on his motor-bike for supplies. Sometimes, he allows Wren to join him.
And that is how Ryder and Wren learn that each camp rule was written for a reason. If broken, consequences are exponentially more severe than parental punishment.
They’ve caused worlds to collide. Secrets spill and cast a shadow of doubt over everything believed to be true. Wary partnerships are formed to ferret out the truth as those with the most to lose frantically try to maintain their malicious cover.
I’ll be happily handing out copies of Resistant as soon as it hits my hot little hands. It would just be wrong to keep it to myself.
Reviewed by jv poore, December 2019.