The Desperate Ones follows the story of 7 people. They are all very different but are connected by the fact that their world is about to end. Dominion Capital has declared that the city of Pottersfield is to be destroyed. There is no separation of church and state, the government’s religion rules. In this world of quirky technological advancement in an unknown time, hackers have created a new religion to resist Dominion Capital. They want to re-code and create a fresh start. Caught in the middle of the impending fall out are Rhubarb, who is a war veteran recently released from prison with a curious implant; Lola is a drug addict; Professor Clymenus Bell teaches media history but can’t remember yesterday’s events; Rabine is a working girl devoted to her religion and is willing to risk becoming a martyr; and Cora is a young girl lured to Pottersfield while everyone else clamors to escape. Even in the face of collapse there are some who will discover that this end is not game over.
In this pre-apocalyptic tale, there is a great deal of social commentary. There is of course the heavy rule of government, censorship and propaganda; seemingly manipulative and blind adherence to government and religion and of course the issue of humanity’s relationship with the poor.
The premise of this book is a great idea, however, I wanted more and not really in a ‘it was gripping and I didn’t want it to end’ kind of way. Shaw leaves much of the themes in the novel unexplored and the characters seem a bit underdeveloped. Grammatical and spelling errors throughout would throw me off.
a passage I liked:
She was clean, going to Wishful thinking, clean! She never thought she would see the day. No blue fire, not even the scraping-insides pain of the last blue surge before downing. She laughed as the sun bled a yellow stain in the sky. Rows of boats flanked her wet path and wild vegetation claimed the discarded foam-sheet and tech carapaces. She loved the dying place. It was hers, after all. It had let her run wild through its maze, and had always given her what she wanted, what she needed. It was the only thing that never left her.
I won my copy from the Goodreads First Reads program.