Friday, September 9, 2016

Prescient - a Dystopian novel by Derek Murphy

I wanted to share this gem of a Dystopian novel by Derek Murphy, the founder of Urban Epic imprint. I got a free copy of Prescient as a download, and I highly recommend it to general readers, not even fans of sci-fi or Dystopia, as it raises some universal philosophical questions.

What if I told you you'd be dead in a year?
That a food corporation would experiment with genetic modification, and nearly destroy the human race. Would you believe me? Sounds crazy, right? Because nobody can see the future.

Nobody but me.
And what I see isn't pretty.
A dystopian wasteland.
Bodies rotting to nothing in the streets.
Humans on the brink of survival.
The wilderness eating away at what used to be my hometown.
A shadow organization rounding up children. Bands of warring tribes.

And let's not forget the modifieds - the zombie-like remains of what used to be the human race. Civilization is destroyed. There is no chance to undo the damage. No one can save the world... except me.

Because for me, it hasn't even happened yet. For me, it might never happen.
The only thing is, the more time I spend in the future, the less I want to erase it. Stopping the future might break me... I'd be erasing a face, a smile, that I never want to forget. 

My thoughts:
I got this book as a free download, and I'll probably be checking out more items by the same writer, even though I'm well out of the YA age bracket myself. As an author, you also have to be an actor, key grip, director of photography, etc. Derek Murphy is all of the above. No wonder he holds a PhD in literature. You have to be a psychologist too in order to generate plausible, sympathetic characters. As a male author, he writes rather convincingly from the point of view of a teen girl living in 2015-16. He knows what's important to an average female in that age bracket. Although, his heroine is not entirely typical. Having lost her mother at a young age, she had to grow up fast, even though she claims that she is immature next to her more socially visible and sexually assertive friend Crys. It's fascinating how maturity and success are measured among teens. Also, for a teen girl, his protagonist has a pretty rich vocabulary and a great deal of critical self-awareness. She is observant and articulate, even though she acknowledges that her interests are on par with those of her peers (making sure that lip gloss matches the sweater, not looking like a dweeb at a senior party, impressing a popular guy). It's very common for kids from a sheltered background to assume that their future is going to be cloudless and bright. So that assumption is being challenged when the main character has a disturbing time-travel experience that gives her a glimpse of dystopian wonderland.

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