This past week I read Jane Redd‘s Solstice, which is a young adult dystopian. You all know I love dystopians so I thought I’d share it with you for your weekend reading. It’s not a long read, fast-paced so you could easily read it over a weekend. Be prepared with tissues though 😉
I received this book via I Am a Reader. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of this review.Solstice by Jane Redd
Published by Self Publish on 2016-03-01
Length: 236 pages
Reviewing eARC from I Am a Reader
Four ways to get Banished from the last surviving city on earth are: 1. Cut out your emotion tracker, 2. Join a religious cult, 3. Create a rebellion against the Legislature, 4. Fall in love.
Jezebel James does all four.
Jez is on the fast-track to becoming a brilliant scientist, with one goal—to save her city from total extinction. Her caretakers have entrusted her with a secret plan to stop the rain from flooding the rest of the earth and start civilization anew. But the more Jez learns about the price of a fresh beginning, the more she realizes that carrying out the plan will lead to few survivors, and among the dead will be those she cares about the most.
Solstice by Jane Redd (which is really Heather B. Moore writing under a pseudonym) hooked me into the story immediately. Jezebel James is sixteen and a student in the A Level of society, meaning she is fast-tracked to study at the university level and eventually work as a scientist for the government. But there is something unique about Jezebel. She’s immune to the Harmony implant that every citizen is required to have placed at birth. This implant suppresses extreme emotions, allowing society to run smoothly with no criminal activity or “useless” fighting. Without it, Jez runs the risk of being found out and the penalty is death.
The dystopian world portrayed in Solstice is both haunting and something I could see happening, scary enough! Forty years prior to the start of the book, the rains started. It has rained everyday, all day since. This has basically resulted in a water world setting, with few places that there is viable land. 2 million live in the city Jez is in and it is the largest and only known civilized settlement. The Legislature (government) controls everything with an iron fist. No exceptions to the rules, no exceptions to the Harmony implant which not only controls emotions but tracks the citizens movements. Honestly it’s a totalitarian rule with little room for humans to be humans.
Jez has grown up in this society, immune to the implant and Carrier to a key that could save the human race, if she knows where to look. Her caretaker (parent) has coached her on hiding her emotions. This slowly eats at Jez. She wants to feel and is scared to feel all at the same time. I cannot imagine living in a society that dictates I cannot love, I can’t laugh, I can’t cry. This is Jezebel’s life and what she must hide at all times.
When her caretaker dies and leaves her a journal as an inheritance (the written word is also illegal), Jez is sent to prison for hiding the book. While there she uncovers more and more about who she is, what the Legislature is all about and the depths the government has gone to in order to “survive.” It’s all in the name of survival and I love that Jez, as the facts become known, really questions what she’s thought to be true her entire life.
Overall, this is a fantastic read! I only gave it 4 stars instead of 5 because the plot flow wasn’t even. There were times it was fast, times it dragged, and other times I thought I missed something in the turning of the chapters. Big holes in some cases but nothing so drastic as to make me sit the story down. If you enjoy dystopians, I highly recommend this one be your next read!