Publisher: Adrenaline-Fueled Fiction
Publication Date: October 19, 2021
Pages: 236 pages
In today’s world, law enforcement agencies across the country rely on forensic tools, DNA testing, and crime labs. But what if that technology was suddenly no longer available? No one in the small, west Texas town of Shadow Ridge knows what took down the power grid, or when it’s going to be back up, but everyone knows exactly where they were the moment it went down. And now, with no electricity, no internet, and no modern technology, the men and women responsible for keeping the town safe are going to have to learn how to fight crime all over again.
When one of the men in charge of storing food for the town of Shadow Ridge is found murdered execution style, it’s up to Jace McQuaid to find the killer. What he discovers is a group of organized raiders who are stealing supplies and selling them on the black market—and the survival of the town depends on stopping them.
Morgan Addison’s estranged brother, Ricky, shows up at her house demanding weapons and confirming her fears that he’s a part of the outlaws. Tensions are raised further when Ricky kidnaps her son to ensure his safe passage out of town. Jace must find a way to save Noah and ensure the survival of Shadow Ridge.
PRAISE FOR THE BOOK:
Clueless Gent’s Rating for Survival
Survival takes our concept of “normal” and turns it upside down in a way that keeps a reader glued to the story and wondering what’s going to happen next!
The small Texas town of Shadow Ridge is hit by an electromagnetic pulse (EMP)—or something—that takes down the power grid, making most electronics unusable. They discover the same thing in the surrounding towns, and have no way to receive or share information with anyone. This story covers the first nine months (or so) of this dystopian nightmare. It places characters in predicaments they never planned on being in. Further, it highlights the good and evil of people when left to fend for themselves.
This is the first book in The Fallout Series by author Lisa Harris. I must say, she set up this series amazingly well! There are so many different ways things can go, and once the reader begins to care about the characters, there is simply no choice but to read the remainder of the series. I certainly will!
One of the things I love (and hate) is how the author doesn’t really tell the reader what happened. Is it an EMP? They don’t know for certain. Are they at war? They don’t know. As I was reading, I halfway expected an army of Russian or Chinese tactical vehicles to appear on the horizon.
As with any really good story, it’s the characters that draw the reader in. The main protagonist, Jace McQuaid, had only come back to the town to celebrate a wedding anniversary of his parents. Then the Quake hit! (It’s not an earthquake, but that’s what the townspeople decided to call the event.) With his military background, the people turn to Jace to lead them through this catastrophe. Now he feels stuck!
I also love the way the author handles backstory and emotions. With so much action going on, it’s pretty tricky to get in backstory and emotions without interrupting the momentum of the story. Lisa Harris handled this wonderfully. For example, at one point in the story Jace is concerned about the safety of two women and a young child in a house. He decides to spend the night in an abandoned car near the front of the house. As Jace begins to relax from the day, “depression fell on him like a blanket trying to smother him.” The author uses this downtime to get in some backstory and an update on Jace’s current emotional state.
Even with the story’s somewhat quick pace, the author still managed to include very good description. For example, this is how the author described what Jace saw from his family ranch one afternoon: “From here, he could see everything from scrub, grassland, and juniper savannas to the open hilltops and distant mountain slopes that were covered with piñon pine and oak.”
Since I’ve mentioned it a few times, I consider the pacing of this story to be perfect! At 236 pages, it’s not a long read at all. However, I’ll admit that once I got into the story, I wanted it to be longer, but I consoled myself with the fact that this saga continues in the next book in the series. Actually, at the end of this story, the author includes the synopsis of the following book—Hunted—as well as the first few pages. Is that good marketing or what?
There are so many things to gush about with this book! The other characters, the character arcs, the believability factor; they are all quite impressive.
After one book, I’m a serious series fan! I consider Survival one of the best dystopian novels I’ve ever read. I highly recommend it!
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