Friday, January 16, 2015

Mini Book Review: How to Kill Your Senator

I was asked by the authors to provide an honest review in anticipation of the upcoming release of this short story. I was not compensated for this review in any way. 

Title: "How to Kill Your Senator"
Authors: James Courtney and Kaisy Wilkerson-Mills
Genre: YA Dystopian
Pages: 10
Release: January 16, 2015

Authors' Summary:

In City-State, politics can be deadly...

Jackson Cartwright has murdered the entire City-State Senate. In the aftermath, Jackson meets a mysterious creature named Jinn. Jinn attempts to show Jackson the root of City-State's political corruption, but Jackson fails to comprehend the clear message that Jinn displays and represents.

As the source of the problem is revealed, Jackson's refusal to understand creates an even more deadly situation.

In this short narrative (about 3,000 words), Jackson struggles with his own willful ignorance about the political climate of City-State. His ignorance could mean his demise.

My review:

This short story provides an insight into the anthology The Dystopian Nation of City-State written by James Courtney and Kaisy Wilkerson-Mills. Their goal was to create an entire nation that could be followed, experienced, and analyzed by the reader without being forced to follow one specific character or plot. "How to Kill Your Senator" is a great quick read for anyone looking to delve into a dystopia world without strings attached.

There is no lack of action since the story begins with Jackson surveying his murderous work of 100 senators. The descriptions of the room and the changing imp called Jinn are also well written and express the non-stop emotional roller coaster that is this dystopian city.

From a reader's standpoint, the story grabbed my attention immediately and offered a chance to think about not only dystopian societies but how our society mirrors City-State. Many citizens refuse to vote, which means they shouldn't complain when they are angered by the acts of politicians. However, for the ones who do vote, there is no guarantee that they have made the best choice for their country and family. Overall, great short piece.

From a writer's standpoint, I would have liked the language to have been simpler and the descriptions shorter in certain places. Granted, my style is my own and every author has his or her own, but the descriptions could have been turned into beautiful action by taking out the passive verbs. While the style did not take away from my reading experience, I would like to see another piece where the language is a little more informal.

Rating: 3.5 / 5 Wonders

Overall, this is a fun, fast read for any fan of dystopian stories. You can find the story here and get more information on The Dystopian Nation of City-State here.

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