Book tour stop! Today I’m delighted to be the host for 28 Days, a dystopian novel written by Sue Parritt.
First thing first, let me thank Rachel and Sue Parritt for providing me with an e-copy of this book. Much obliged *hat tip*
MEET THE BOOK
Melbourne, February 2100. Emma Cartwright has 28 days left to find work, otherwise she must report to the Productive Citizens Bureau and accept any vacancy, regardless of location, pay or conditions.
Her situation becomes even more grave when the Employment Positions Portal is disabled and the government refuses to extend her unemployment period. At 70, Emma could opt for voluntary euthanasia, but she has her student son Jack to support.
After a chance meeting with the eccentric Cal Ritchie, founder of the clandestine group Citizens’ Voice and supporter of those fleeing repressive laws to live in bush camps, Emma is determined to escape her life of compliance.
When her son Jack is suddenly arrested, Emma finds herself running out of time and options, and has to take drastic measures. But can she save her son?
The Reluctant Doorkeeper Trilogy, book 1 – standalone
Publication date: 21/05/21
READ MY REVIEW
Cover: Very nice. The water pattern reminds me of lace, which is an odd yet fitting detail.
I chose 28 Days because of the MC.
Emma, an Australian woman and our protagonist, is seventy years old and looking for a new job. What? you’re going to ask; Yeah, I’m going to answer. In this dystopian-yet-believable world, the Government expects people to work until they’re eighty, and then to just keep going after their retirement.
Dystopia, as I said, but with a spin that may read as a ‘What’s going to happen in a few years’ cautionary tale. If that’s the case, someone like Emma would come in handy. First thing first, she’s an old lady who learns about standing up for herself; then, it’s a welcome take after countless Chosen Ones fresh out of their teens.
Once I read a quote saying, ‘Give me a Chosen One who’s 42, a single mom and who doesn’t have any damn left to give’, and while I’m paraphrasing here because the exact thing escapes me, that’s what I want to see. Read. Old ladies like me (also) like relatable characters.
Parritt’s writing is rich, her style engaging. The plot has some surprises in store for the reader too, and Emma’s character growth is a plus in my book. Another praise goes to the cast of characters, as they’re realistic and a strong support to the story. Well done!
I’m just not that sure about the stakes being high enough given the solution of a few problems Emma encounters during her journey, but this is only the first installment of a trilogy and I’m suspending my judgement on that until I’m done reading it all. Chances are the aforementioned solution is there just to lull us into a false sense of security 😀
28 Days is an enjoyable read for those who love good female leads and dystopian settings. I’m looking forward to book number two!
MEET THE AUTHOR
Originally from England, and now living on the Mornington Peninsula, south-east of Melbourne, Sue worked in university libraries until taking early retirement in 2008 to concentrate on writing novels. Creative writing has been a passion since her teenage years, with short stories, poetry and articles published in magazines and anthologies in Australia, the US and the UK. To date, Sue has written nine novels:
Sannah and the Pilgrim, first in a trilogy of a future dystopian Australia focusing on climate change and the harsh treatment of refugees from drowned Pacific islands. Odyssey Books, 2014. Commended in the FAW Christina Stead Award, 2014.
Pia and the Skyman. Along with Kaire, pilgrim and skyman, Sannah’s daughter, Pia continues her people’s fight for freedom. Odyssey Books, 2016. Commended in the FAW Christina Stead Award, 2016.
The Sky Lines Alliance: three groups join forces to overthrow the brutal Australian government. Odyssey Books, 2016.
Chrysalis, the story of a perceptive girl growing up in a Quaker family in Swinging Sixties’ Britain. Morning Star Press, 2017
Re-Navigation recounts a life turned upside down when Julia, aged 40, journeys from the sanctuary of middle-class Australian suburbia to undertake a retreat at a college located on an isolated Welsh island. Creativia Publishing, 2019.
Feed Thy Enemy, based on Sue’s father’s experiences, is an account of courage and compassion in the face of trauma as a British airman embarks on a plan that risks all to feed a starving, war-stricken Italian family. Creativia Publishing, 2019.
A Question of Country explores the migrant experience through the protagonist’s lifelong search for meaningful identity. Next Chapter, April 2020.
Sue’s current project, The Reluctant Doorkeeper Trilogy, set in Melbourne, 2100-2105, explores the problem of overpopulation and extended life expectancy in an increasingly climate-challenged world and the inhumane solutions adopted by a government determined to rid Australia of unproductive citizens.
Book 1, 28 Days, sees Emma, aged 70, emerge from a life of compliance to one of civil disobedience when the Employment Positions Portal is disabled during the final 28 days of her Government Allocated Unemployment Period.
Book 2, Next Step, follows Emma’s first year as a Trainee Doorkeeper, her role to assign appropriate positions to unemployed citizens, and her unofficial work for political change.
Book 3 will deal with a citizens’ revolution, as the population learn the truth about the role of Fully-Trained Doorkeepers.
Passionate about social justice, Sue’s goal as a fiction writer is to continue creating intrepid characters prepared to risk their lives to effect positive change in a troubled world. She intends to write for as long as possible, believing the extensive life experiences of older writers can be employed to engage readers of all ages.