Landscape with Invisible Hand
By MT Anderson
Genre: Science fiction/Contemporary
Publication Date: 9/12/17
One day aliens inhabited, not invaded, earth promising a better life but it was actually only for the 1%. The rest of the world is poor and starving and trying to find a way to get up to the sky to live like the wealthy. Adam and his family is unfortunately the 99% and their life is abysmal.
Adam is an artist and paints everything he sees and I wondered how he could afford all his supplies when his ever optimist mother is unemployed. I know his teacher buys supplies for his class but does Adam take supplies home? Paint and especially canvas is expensive; I guess we aren’t supposed to ask questions. Back to the review…
Adam and his girlfriend get a great idea to make money- a reality show about their love. They film episodes of their dates and since the aliens, the vuvv, “invaded” during a 50’s themed drive-in movie, the vuvv love everything 50’s nostalgia and Adam and his girlfriend have to use words like groovy. Of course at some point they begin to hate each other and it becomes a problem much like Adam’s entire life. He has a disease that gives him no control of his bowels, his father is a dick, and his girlfriend and her family are dicks too. So when Adam has an opportunity to win an art contest that could get his family up to the 1%, you just know that that is NEVER going to happen-DAMN YOU MT; CAN”T THIS LOVELY FAMILY HAVE ANY GOOD LUCK? I was so angry and frustrated at this wonderful family’s bad luck that I began to hate this book but I knew there was a deeper message so I trucked along.
There is an ending and that’s all I’ll say but I liked it and the message and it stayed true to the story and the family.
This was a short albeit heartbreaking story about a little family who tries to stay positive in their shitty lives. Adam had a great attitude and took no crap from anyone and his mother’s half glass full perspective really helped me get through this depressing book.
Bang Bang Rating 1/4
Tarnished City (Dark Gifts #2)
By: Vic James
Genre: Science Fiction/Dystopian
Publication Date: February 5, 2018
Tarnished City picks up after Luke is sent to prison and Abi and her family, sans Daisy, are sent to the work camp. We’ve already seen the work camp in book one so there’s no way we’re going back there again which means Abi is probably going to escape and she does. This wouldn’t be a dystopian novel if someone wasn’t trying to rescue their sibling from the bad people so you guessed it, Abi will stop at nothing to rescue Luke from prison.
Meanwhile at prison, Luke is expecting chains and dungeons and beatings and starvation but that’s not quite what awaits him. I won’t get into because I want you to be surprised but I will say that the prison experience is the main theme of Tarnished City.
Meanwhile at Kyneston, Gavar still hates his family and loves his daughter; Bouda is hell bent on being Chancellor by ANY means necessary; Jenner is unhappy with his unskilled situation; and Silyen is still weird. But let’s talk about Silyen who is the best character in the book. In book one, he started the idea of abolishing the slave days but he seems ambivalent to the whole idea and he released Dog knowing he was going to wreak havoc. Does book 2 reveal Sil’s motives? Nope, it just adds more mystery to the character which is fantastic. I have my theories about Sil and his behavior but I’ll keep that to myself and the spoiler edition.
Just like the real world, the powerful not only want to remain so but they want more power. The powerful say that they are looking out for the rest of the majority of the nation but their actions scream that they could care less and it is up to us to make change. Among others, power is a big running theme in the Dark Arts Series. Dynamic characters such as Silyen, Bouda, and a new character named Faiers contribute to the enjoyment of this read. If you are looking for a light hearted dystopian story, don’t bother-Tarnished City is DARK. But if you do decide to begin this series, which I think you should, you won’t regret it.
Bang Bang Rating: 1/4