**We were gifted an e-copy of this book in return for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are our own**
If you’ve followed my blog for a while you’ll know how passionate I am about reading and promoting indie authors and one such author who has become a firm favourite is Olga Gibbs. Olga is the author of the Celestial Creatures quartet, a high fantasy series featuring some kickass angels- I’d highly recommend checking it out if you haven’t already! Gibbs’ latest book offering is due for release on 21st October and is a complete move away from fantasy as No Child Of Mine is a political dystopian novel. I was thrilled to be given the opportunity to receive a proof e-copy of this book and I hope you enjoying reading my full review below.
About The Book
57th Year of the true leadership of The Ordained Liberating Party; or Year 2273 by the old calendar.
“The Collapse” took millions of lives and most of the country’s farming lands, bringing the surviving population of the island to the brink of starvation.
Out of the aftermath of the chaos and anarchy, a new state had emerged, known as The Federation Britannia, run by the single and unopposed Ordained Liberating Party.
The division of the country’s orphanages for children of “the true citizens” and children of “the enemies of the state” began the clearance of the questionable element, and bloody years of the Age of Cleansing had finished the purge, leaving behind a perfectly obedient electorate that marched every year in the Liberation Day parades, praising the Party’s leadership and following the Party’s every directive.
The rule of the Party is absolute. Its tool of compliance, the State Security Unit, is feared.
Tom isn’t a frightened follower, he is a true believer. He loves the Party with all his heart. He trusts in the Party’s wisdom. The Party had raised him, rewarding his devotion and love with a lucrative engineering job, and after the approval for the Procreation licence, it also granted him a family.
But the unexpected midnight visit by the State Security to his flat, questions asked and blood samples collected, unsettles Tom more than he likes to admit, and the following day, whilst investigating the “black uniforms” interest, Tom witnesses the State Security troops, led by the familiar officer, marshalling the children from his daughter’s nursery, packing them into trucks and taking them into the unknown.
At that moment Tom is forced to make a decision: either to follow the Party directive and to surrender his child into its plenary care or to protect what he loves and run.
But there’s nowhere to run. There’s no escape from the island or from the complete control of the Ordained Liberating Party.
It’s the year 2273 and since ‘the collapse’ nothing has been the same. The government control EVERYTHING; where you work, what you consume digitally, when you can spend time with your family and if you can even have children and Tom is happy with his lot. He implicitly trusts the party and knows they have the best interests of his family at heart. That is until his wife is witness to an ‘event’ unsanctioned by the party which leads to a late night visit from the ‘heavy’s’ and his wife admission that she has doubts about the party she’s never dared voice.
With children being forcibly removed from their families to prevent the spread of an unknown illness and Tom’s whole world at risk of being ripped away from him, he needs to make a decision about where his loyalties lie and how far he would go to protect his family. Is the state party all his been lead to believe? or will his eyes be opened to the truth his wife sees?
Wow, just wow is all I can say about No Child Of Mine. Gibbs throws you straight into her unsettling, dark world where state control has been amplified to the extreme and compliant, brainwashed citizens tow the party line in every aspect of their lives. It’s a scary portrayal of how easily a government can take control in a ‘big brother’ style regime and I know the author has used elements of her own experiences growing up in USSR whilst penning this novel. I felt the story also holds many parallels to the current pandemic situation we are currently negotiating with the numerous lockdowns being a little close for comfort; especially as I was reading it during the worst of it, pretty scary as I know Olga had already started writing this before the pandemic hit! In a weird way those personal experiences of the pandemic teamed with the disturbing world created in this novel made it so much more relatable as well as terrifying!
Olga uses her beautifully detailed, easy writing style to create such a dark, oppressive atmosphere that left me feeling on edge and decidedly uncomfortable throughout, especially as Tom’s mission seemed doomed to failure with no clear escape. It’s stuffed full of suspense and had me biting my nails late into the night past my bedtime, but the satisfying conclusion of this novel was certainly worth the eye bags!
I absolutely adored No Child Of Mine which fully immersed me in it’s world building and fully fleshed out characters. Having been a fan of Gibbs’ previous fantasy series this latest novel shows huge growth and development in her writing style with this being such a confident offering that plays to all her strengths; dystopian is definitely a genre she has smashed and I can’t wait to see what she’s got up her sleeve next!
About The Author
Olga Gibbs lives in a leafy-green town, nestled amongst the green fields of West Sussex, England. She was writing from the age of fifteen, mainly short stories and novellas and was a guest columnist for a local newspaper. When she is not dreaming up new adventures for her imaginary friends, she does outreach work with teenagers.
Olga is the author of the popular fantasy quartet Celestial Creatures.
Please visit author website www.OlgaGibbs.com for more information on upcoming books.
No Child Of Mine is available to pre order from Amazon*