The Edge of Cascadia is a futuristic novel about survival after an apocalypse.
I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.
It’s the “what if” questions that get me going.Author Website
S.A Sebucchi grew up in Washington and started writing at an early age. She studied at the University of Washington and earned a B.A. in Comparative History of Ideas. The author, her husband and two children live on a five-acre property in the woods. She loves reading, writing, and living in her imagination.
The Edge of Cascadia is her first novel, now available for pre-order on Amazon. The expected publishing date is 3 August 2021. It is the first book of the Colony series, with the sequel currently in progress.
Whispering Meadow, is a book for middle-graders that the author is busy writing with her ten-year-old daughter.
The Edge of Cascadia – Summary
Imagine yourself in the future. The Third World War has already taken place, followed by nuclear winter and a killer virus that wiped out most of humankind. It is in this barren, world that the author introduces us to the Colony, the home of the last of humanity.
How would death by nuclear winter look? Acid rain, radiation poisoning, starvation, hypothermia, desperation.S.A. SEBUCHI. THE EDGE OF CASCADIA (Kindle Locations 3697-3698)
It is a place of strict rules, with all transgressions recorded on your file. Punishment can be to deny you the opportunity to become a parent. Or even worse they ban you from the Colony and you have to fight for your survival in a barren world.
The Colony sent expeditions to cities in the barren world to replenish their always limited resources. But as the teams scrape the cities clean, they have to venture further into unexplored areas.
The Colony send a team of seven to Seattle to find out if it is safe from radiation and see what resources are available.
The team consists of seven people. Harold, the team leader, and his wife, Clara. The other members are Francine, Thomas, Ernie, and the two brothers, Calvin and Curtis. We also meet Annabelle, the last member of the team, and a gifted drawing artist. Her purpose on this mission is to make drawings of the conditions and items they find on their trip.
What did they find?
It surprises the team to find habitable areas outside the Colony. and other human survivors. But even more astonishing, women can fall pregnant and give birth to healthy babies. They remember that in the Colony, all the girl’s eggs are harvested shortly after birth and kept frozen. It is only when a couple passes rigorous standards that can they become parents through artificial insemination. All pregnant women stay in a comfortable ‘womb’ during the pregnancy to ensure the babies are not affected by the dangerous radiation.
When the team reaches Seattle and finds a group of people living there, it turns everything they believe in on its head. They struggle with a sense of betrayal and decide not to return to the Colony but instead make a new life in Seattle.
What did I like?
The author creates a contract between the Colony and the outside world. The Colony is a place of strict rules, biodomes to grow plants in a regulated environment, and lab steaks. But the world outside has thriving plants, different animals, and people living without constant fear of radiation. We experience this ‘real’ world through the descriptive language the author uses.
Snow-capped mountains rose from the lake as if they had sat on the shore to put their feet in. The mountains and blue sky reflected across the calm, pristine lake. Everything seemed frozen in time, like he stood within a photograph.S.A. SEBUCHI. THE EDGE OF CASCADIA (Kindle Locations 1949-1951)
The different viewpoints the author uses helps us to see the world outside the Colony from different perspectives. It helps the reader to experience the team’s doubts because of the lies they discover about The Colony and their feelings of distrust toward the people of Seattle. Together with Howard, we feel his intense pain after losing his wife and the tender feelings that Annabelle develops towards Ezra. We see the conflict Curtis experience about staying in Seattle. Because he is loyal and wants to return as a hero to The Colony, but he is also falling for Poppy.
The characters and the challenges they are facing is authentic. We see how the author develops the characters as their journey continues and they meet and overcome many challenges.
And not so much?
Early in the novel, the author presents us with a secret. After the death of Annabelle’s grandmother, Annabelle sets out for the bunkers to find a key her grandmother mentioned to her. Although her grandmother couldn’t tell her what the key is for, she is adamant that Annabelle should retrieve it, regardless of the punishment she could face if discovered.
After Annabelle left with the team to go to Seattle, the key is only mentioned occasionally as a source of comfort to Annabelle. I expected the key to be a central part of the novel and was disappointed that it faded into the background and the mystery stayed unresolved even at the end. But this mystery will most likely be resolved in the sequel.
Should you read The Edge of Cascadia?
The Edge of Cascadia is a post-apocalyptic fiction novel set in the future. After a Third World War, a nuclear winter, and a killer virus, The Colony is home to the only survivors. But are they the only survivors?
Follow the seven-man team on their exploration of the world outside The Colony and the reality they discover. The descriptive language and inside look into the minds of the characters make this novel an immersive read. The author manages to create and develop an extensive cast of characters and make them feel real.
I recommend this novel for readers who enjoys dystopian post-apocalyptic science fiction novels. If you are looking for similar books, try The New Earth Series by Matthew Mather. Or read my review about The Drowning Land by David M Donachie, an historical fantasy about the tribes of the Doggerland.
In The Edge of Cascadia we see how hard we find it to trust strangers, or people who are different to us. This is one of the reasons for discrimination, based on various things like race, language, disabilities, religion, etc. Have you ever been at the receiving end of discrimiations, for whatever reason. How did you handle it? We would love to hear from you. Please share with us in the comments?
Follow S.A. Sebuci
6 May 2017
Text-to-Speech | Screen Reader | Enhanced Typesetting | Word Wise
Categories: Medical Thrillers
Trigger Warnings: Euthanasia | Marital Violence | Sexual References | Profanity
Hi! I am Susan
Welcome to my adventure
Why Read or Rot?
I have started reading at the age of four. I can remember how I often read under the covers with a flashlight when I was supposed to sleep.
During my early school years, we visited the library once a week. I couldn’t pick out my new book fast enough! By the end of the period, I would have finished it already, leaving me with nothing to read for the rest of the week!
Growing up, Fridays was the highlight of my week. Dad would pack the whole family into the car, and off we go! You guessed right – to the library! We were a family of readers.
In my adult years, I’ve developed a variety of interests like technology, photography, gardening and even writing. But reading was and will always be a part of my life!
Reading for me is like breathing. If I cannot read, my soul will quietly rot away…