Outland Exile Book 1 Old Men and regrets by W. Clark Boutwell #review#
Posted by mindygrindstaff
The United States is dead and the Democratic Unity killed it.
After catastrophic wars and the Meltdown, The Unity rules from its East Coast citadel, leaving the outlands to savages and its strangely altered plants. Providing free health care, employment, and ThiZ (the drug of any really civilized life), the Unity mandates retirement at forty before fatigue and error contaminate a culture of youth, innovation and vigor.
With liberating body implants, history’s finest democracy supervises every citizen for her/his/its own and the nation’s welfare. Seventeen-year-old Lieutenant Malila Chiu, is a veteran officer who, despite well-earned fame, finds her career in tatters. Vandalism at a distant station triggers her demotion. Facing denunciation … or worse, Malila’s one option is to enter the outlands to repair the station herself. At first, the repairs go well.
Dropping from fatigue, she wakes to find a hideously ancient savage has murdered her platoon and now holds a knife at her throat, making her the … Outland Exile.
Massively destructive wars and the Meltdown have destroyed what at one time was the United States, and now the east coast is the Democratic Unity. The rest of the country outside the Unity is called the Outlands, where “savages” and weirdly altered plants reign.
Second Lt. Milila Chiu at only 17 is a veteran officer of the Defensive Unity Forces for Security, she’s a excellent hunter using her avatar and also she’s a sniper. When she’s demoted, for something she didn’t even do, (unbeknownst to Milila she’s thrown under the bus as part of another’s ambition) she’s sent to the Sunprarie Station, a distant outpost on the edge of the Outlands to repair the damage done by the “savages” . Along with her platoon of CRNA soldiers as bodyguards, she begins attempting repairs. On the second night there the entire platoon is killed and she is kidnapped by what she assumes is a demented Sisi. A Sisi is any and all citizens who at the age of 40 are sent into their own enclaves, and considered a useless and non-productive member of society, not deserving of any respect.
Jesse Johnstone a Captain in the Reconstructed States of America,has taken her, as a Unity officer, for his superiors to interrogate. He takes her from the outpost into the Outlands, from the old state of Wisconsin all the way to Kentucky. Along the way Jessie tells her stories of the old ways and life in the Outlands. Milila thinks that’s all they are at the beginning, just stories from a demented old Sisi. The more he tells her and the more he shows her the more she starts to question all she thought she knew as the truth. She faces lots of trials through the trip to the settlement, she’s almost raped and sold into a brothel, and at one point her depression at being shamed by being captured, she contemplates suicide. Eventually on the trail they meet up with Moses, another member of the Kentucky settlement who volunteered to help Jessie and continue on to Kentucky. Once they reach the settlement, Milila meets Sally (Moses’ wife) and Captain Delarosa and is questioned by both. If Milla can escape, and does she even want to, from the settlement and her captors what then? Can she make it back to Nyork and the “safety” of the Rampart with out Jesse? What awaits her back home ? With a superior officer who has set out to destroy their superior officer and with Milla as collateral damage, her safety, life and career are in serious danger. The Unity has political fractions called the Red and Blue. Like our democrats and republicans there’s the usual political back stabbing and talking crap but in these times any scandal real or fictional can bring death.
My absolute favourite character is Milla, once her eyes are open and she can “see the stars” she’s not afraid to fight and defend what she believes in. I enjoy dystopian novels and making the main character a strong female made me enjoy it even more. I really enjoyed the other characters too, they all came alive for me.
This starts out kind of slow and confusing with all the talk of the CORE and the ways of the Unity but trust me stick with it as it gets really interesting. I especially enjoyed the interaction between Jessie and Milila and Sally. Milila learns so much from Sally and starts to change. The author paints a vivid picture of the characters and the surroundings. The pace is steady and the characters are quite intriguing and full of life. I give this book 4 stars and will definitely be reading book 2. I need to find out what happens to everyone after the cliff hanger in book 1.
This book was an Onlinebookclub.org. Book of the Day.
Independent reviewer for Romance Authors That Rock.