Publishing Date: December 2015
Publishers Description: The earth’s core overheats. The sovereign leader vanishes. A young girl is the survivors’ only hope
Review: Not a lot of thought went into the world building of this novel. In this dystopian future the Earth’s core has overheated and disrupted or torn asunder the surface. Since matter can neither be created or destroyed, how is it that the core gets hotter? If anything, scientists have found that the Earth’s core is cooling 1 deg. C for every million years (thermodynamics). Why not have something realistic like pole shifts or massive earthquakes…a meteorite. In the novel, massive world wide volcanic eruptions would have cooled the Earth and left the atmosphere un-breathable but in this novel the air is clear and big game moved away but to where and as to why, no one knows. If big game moved out why do they see Elk shit, live deer and talk about making stag horn knife handles the next time they kill one?
I lived and worked in the Sawtooth Mountains for 5 years and have never heard of a Mule deer called a Stag in that area let alone in my 25 years as a wildlife biologist. Stag is a European referent for their deer. While some of the descriptions of the flora and fauna were accurate, a lot of it was not. Flash floods during a storm at high altitude in Southern Idaho does…not….happen, maybe in this dried out future it does, but who’s to say.
Derry (or staggy) is supposed to be growing into a leader but ends up being rescued by everybody because she’s so speshul. She’s not strong, resourceful and unrepentant but rather clingy, whiney, vindictive and myopic. EVERYTHING revolves around her little wants, needs and desires. Her brother in trouble? Bam, she’s on it with total concern and focus until Jakob (her tunnel buddy) is captured then Owen is dumped like a dirty shirt. She gives up easily when captured and mewls around like a lost kitten. The Rogue gang reads like the characters from Mad Max. Piercings, tattoos, badass names like Blade, Diesel, Rummy etc. and ruthless behavior that is unrelenting….not believable.
There was quite a bit of phrasing to expedite scene development. Derriere is either “shivering (x23)” down her “spine (x15)” or “Flushed, flush, flushing (x13)” to the beating of her “Pulse (x19)”. The dog growls a lot (x13) of the low and deep sort. The fight scenes lacked logical progression and at one point Ben&Derry pulls the charging handle of her M16, twice in the same scene. I don’t know about you but bullets pop out when you do that.
The definition for “Immurement” is ‘to imprison, build walls or…entomb in a wall’. Other than a cool title, I don’t see the relevance of the title to anything that occurs in the novel. Sure, the survivors are hunted but still have their freedom to move around in the open. Great storyline, poor execution.