Tag Archives: Arid

Parched: The Days Before Exile (The Wastelands Book 1) by Anne Joyce Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.

In a world torn apart by nuclear war and water barons tightening their grip on the worsening water supplies, two people find themselves confronted with a dark and hidden agenda in the wake of a string of disappearances in author Anne Joyce’s “Parched: The Days Before Exile”, the first book in The Wastelands series.

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The Synopsis

It’s the 2040’s and the world has become a more terrifying place than anyone could’ve foreseen. The country is recovering from a devastating nuclear war that has left much of the earth scourged and uninhabitable. Some billion-dollar corporations took advantage of the destruction by purchasing the rights to water and selling it back to the public at ridiculous prices.

Joshua Wyman and Maria Perez struggle to adapt to this new violent world where muggings and murder over water are a common occurrence. The new water barons assign an army of brutes called “Purifiers” to instill order, but when people start mysteriously vanishing, Joshua and Maria begin to wonder if the Purifiers are behind their disappearance.

When Maria receives a frantic email from a friend in danger, she learns of the water barons’ plans for the “indigents” who can’t afford water. She desperately searches for someone to share her dark secret with who might be able to help. When her information falls into the hands of a violent anarchist group, their beaten down, oppressed city must confront what its inhabitants have long since hinted about, but never dared to whisper. Uprising

The Review

This was such a unique and fun read for me. Coming into this story, I was intrigued as this was the “prequel” to the author’s book “Arid”, which I read and reviewed here before. Getting to return to this world and the characters before the events of that initial book from the author was such a unique and fun experience as a reader and reviewer. The story felt fresh and the mythos behind the water barons and the brutality of the Purifiers has perfectly mirrored in the dystopian atmosphere and haunting tone that the narrative took on as things began to break down at an accelerating rate in this narrative.

The blend of strong character development that really pulled the reader into the emotional element of this narrative along with the very real-world themes that this narrative dealt with made this such a brilliant story. The fight for survival and the desperation that comes in the face of society’s breakdown was palpable on the page, and the exploration of nuclear war, fallout, global warming, and big business controlling much of our society really has never felt more real or scary as it does now, especially in the face of more radical groups rising out in not only our nation but the world armed to the teeth hoping to impose their own way of thinking. The haunting atmosphere comes from the author’s natural ability to tap into the real-world fears we all have in this current climate.

The Verdict

Haunting, gripping, and entertaining, author Anne Joyce’s “Parched: The Days Before Exile” is a must-read narrative in 2022. The dystopian thriller was so engaging and was able to use creativity to highlight the real-world dangers and fears many have around the world today. If you haven’t yet, preorder your own copy of this book today, or grab your own copy on May 2nd, 2022!

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

Anne Rasico (AKA Anne Joyce) was born in a small town in Indiana you’ve probably never heard of. She composed short stories and comic books as a child to amuse her family and began writing poetry at the age of thirteen.

In 1998 she received an Honorable Mention for Literary Excellence for her poem “She Didn’t Come Home.” She attended business school and made the Dean’s List for three consecutive years, putting her love for writing on the back burner. It wasn’t until her mid-twenties that a political post on social networking rekindled her literary flame that has since become a bonfire.

In 2013 her novella When the Chips Are Down was named a Finalist in the MARSocial Author of the Year Contest. When she is not writing, thinking about writing, or going insane from writing she enjoys camping, fishing, swimming, and otherwise spending time with loved ones. She is mother to three extremely spoiled cats. Crazy cat lady? Probably.

Interview with Author Anne Joyce

Tell us a little bit about yourself. How did you get into writing?

I started writing because I was bullied very badly throughout my childhood. I didn’t have a lot of friends or anyone I could really talk to, so I channeled my frustrations into comic books. I was the sidekick to the superhero and in my own world I was somebody really cool instead of the kid that got beaten up. When I got a little older, I moved into poetry and eventually novels

What inspired you to write your book?

I was watching a conspiracy theory show that documented the stifling amount of lakes and rivers that are mysteriously being drained throughout the country. It appears some powerful force has a very specific motivation for the water disappearance. It just got me thinking about so many different possibilities and outcomes

What theme or message do you hope readers will take away from your book?

Always be cognizant of what’s happening around you. Stand up for what you know is right even if others disagree with you

What drew you into this particular genre?

I’m not sure, to be honest.  I guess many years of being a nerd

If you could sit down with any character in your book, what would you ask them and why?

I would ask Blane why he made some of the idiotic decisions that he made because he’s not a stupid man at all. I can’t provide a lot of detail or I’ll give too much away

What social media site has been the most helpful in developing your readership?

Instagram and Facebook

What advice would you give to aspiring or just starting authors out there?

Network with other authors. Promoting and selling your work is a group effort so be part of a community and scratch each other’s backs

What does the future hold in store for you? Any new books/projects on the horizon?

I’m currently writing a Prequel to Arid called “Parched-The Days Before Exile.” 

About the Author

Anne Rasico (AKA Anne Joyce) was born in a small town in Indiana you’ve probably never heard of. She composed short stories and comic books as a child to amuse her family and began writing poetry at the age of thirteen.

In 1998 she received an Honorable Mention for Literary Excellence for her poem “She Didn’t Come Home.” She attended business school and made the Dean’s List for three consecutive years, putting her love for writing on the back burner. It wasn’t until her mid-twenties that a political post on social networking rekindled her literary flame that has since become a bonfire.

In 2013 her novella When the Chips Are Down was named a Finalist in the MARSocial Author of the Year Contest. When she is not writing, thinking about writing, or going insane from writing she enjoys camping, fishing, swimming, and otherwise spending time with loved ones. She is mother to three extremely spoiled cats. Crazy cat lady? Probably.

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7159849.Anne_Rasico

Anne Rasico (AKA Anne Joyce) (@AnneRasico) | Twitter

https://www.facebook.com/AnneJoyceWriter

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Arid by Anne Joyce Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

One small group of survivors in a world where water is sparse and only the wealthy can afford it must find a way to survive the harsh cruel world they’ve been forced into in author Anne Joyce’s novel “Arid”. 

The Synopsis

It’s the distant future and the country is overtaken by wealthy moguls who dominate the water supply and sell it back to the public at ridiculous prices. After a drastic crime increase “indigents” who can’t afford water are stripped of their belongings and forced out of town by an army of brutes called Purifiers. 

Life becomes harsh and ominous for the bright, ambitious Joshua Wyman and his group until they begin to occasionally receive food and other basic amenities from the Brutes. When a blatant abuse of Purifier power during a routine visit leaves them reeling Joshua and his friends reach their breaking point. 

They devise a plan to steal the Purifiers’ vehicle during their next visit and find a place where water is affordable. Their journey across the uncharted wastelands filled with murderers and thieves proves to be far more than this civilized, benevolent crew bargained for. Growing tensions within the nearby towns may cause the two worlds to collide, creating an epic storm.

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The Review

The author has done a spectacular job of fully immersing the readers attention into the harsh setting of this post-apocalyptic world. With the affects of global warming and climate change becoming an all too real aspect of our daily lives, the world in which the characters find themselves seems all too plausible to believe, despite the apocalyptic setting of the narrative.

The character development is what shines the brightest in this novel, with a protagonist and supporting cast of characters that mesh well together and showcase the power of family, even a makeshift family created in the cruel desert sun of an apocalyptic America. The story was evenly paced and did a marvelous job of setting the tone of the narrative, giving the reader a realistic and edge of your seat feeling that only the world created in this novel could provide. 

The Verdict

This is a must read novel for anyone who enjoys a good post-apocalyptic story. An adult outlook on the dangers of global warming and the possibility of water becoming a commodity, the story is engaging and keeps the readers invested with every chapter, and will quickly make any casual reader a fan of this amazing author. If you haven’t yet, grab your copy of Arid by Anne Joyce today!

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

Anne Rasico (AKA Anne Joyce) was born in a small town in Indiana you’ve probably never heard of. She composed short stories and comic books as a child to amuse her family and began writing poetry at the age of thirteen.

In 1998 she received an Honorable Mention for Literary Excellence for her poem “She Didn’t Come Home.” She attended business school and made the Dean’s List for three consecutive years, putting her love for writing on the back burner. It wasn’t until her mid-twenties that a political post on social networking rekindled her literary flame that has since become a bonfire.

In 2013 her novella When the Chips Are Down was named a Finalist in the MARSocial Author of the Year Contest. When she is not writing, thinking about writing, or going insane from writing she enjoys camping, fishing, swimming, and otherwise spending time with loved ones. She is mother to three extremely spoiled cats. Crazy cat lady? Probably.

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7159849.Anne_Rasico

Anne Rasico (AKA Anne Joyce) (@AnneRasico) | Twitter

https://www.facebook.com/AnneJoyceWriter