Published By: Zenith
Date Released: 21/09/2021
In the year 2642, no one person is ethnically like the other. Globalisation, war and other catalysts have given birth to a diverse and multi-ethnic new world. Not everyone feels this new society is ideal, though. A select group creates their own colony – a pureblood, white supremacist cult complete with arranged marriages and heavily guarded borders. Cara yearns to escape her life in the colonies. For as long as she could remember, the seven colonies, led by her imperial grandfather Julius Bull, have only had one mission: protect the bloodline from contamination and produce the next generation of survivors. So, Cara makes a run for it.
Desperate to keep her dissidence quiet for fear of potentially inciting a power struggle within the colonies, Bull brings in a Jimmy Matoo – a special investigator from San Francisco whose brother was found dead near one of the colonies the same night Cara disappeared. For Matoo, the visit to Corinth, Oregon, is eye-opening. He has never seen a white person before and is shocked by their ideas of imperialism, racial purity, and the prospect of arranged marriages in the 27th century. Desperate to find out what really happened to his brother and his connection to Corinth, Jimmy learns that dozens of young people, all destined for loveless, arranged marriages, have gone missing over the years, and some had been found dead on the outskirts of Corinth.
With the clock ticking, Matoo’s missing persons investigation soon becomes a fight for survival – turns out the residents don’t like a brown fellow in their midst. Can he find Cara, figure out what happened to his brother and save the Bull-Smiths from the Cabal before it’s too late? Maybe. But first, he must find out who in the colony has the means and connections to smuggle the dissidents out without being detected because it could be the difference between life and death.
Thanks to Bindiya and Zenith for an advanced copy of this title in return for an honest review.
*Contains Minor Spoilers*
Before I’d even started reading I was instantly struck by the powerful, interesting, unique and very timely premise.
It is fascinating, as a Caucasian person, to read a book about a world where people of colour are prominent and the white people are segregated (for want of a better word). This is a world where generally, race doesn’t matter. Nor does sexuality or location or country or borders. There’s no reason why a world like this can’t exist, and it’s so rarely written about. It’s a great concept that is interesting to read.
Considering this is set 600+ years in the future it’s interesting to see what Bindiya thinks the future will look like, as everyone has their own viewpoint on what the world will look like.
The fact that racism is so rare and contained in this world is a positive (not as positive as it being completely eradicated of course) and it really highlights the problems that exist in our real world.
The characters are really individual and identifiable. You like them for their successes and morals, but hate them for their failures and selfishness. The main villain is so delightful evil, he is a real pleasure to read. For a story where white women are predominately used just for childbearing, there was a risk they would become background, one dimensional characters, but they didn’t, and that really takes some skill.
It is not over the top in its racism or gore, or it’s sentimental moments, but it hits the right balance to feel real, but also to entertain you and affect you as required.
There is a definite sense of The Handmaid’s Tale about it, and Bindiya has enough talent, I think, to get close to Margaret Atwood herself.
I sure hope there’s a sequel, or even a series, followed by a hit movie or TV series. This is a story that deserves to be heard.