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on 31 October 2014
The Community is your first responsibility as a Citizen.
The Community is your mate. When you are alone, we are together.
All are welcome in the Community. White is the color of all colors.
The resources of the Community belong to the Community.
The mind is the true voice of a Citizen.

The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people but the silence over that by the good people. – Martin Luther King, Jr.
Sindra. A world where minds are joined, vocalization is punishable by ‘recycling’ and dystopia is more than just a word. Irradiance begins with murder, and leads the reader through levels of mental and psychological programming, space-jump technology and time-space continuum’s, as is to be expected from any dystopian fantasy. But then, it grows, deepens to a story of life under totalitarian governments, secrets and lies, and the bonds of family, bonds that must be hidden away from a regime that sees no value in kindness or love, no strength in free thought. Which is rather oxymoronic considering the presence of two statues in “The Hall” – the statues of Freedom and Knowledge.

A world of euphemisms, where “processing” is just another word for euthanize, and cruelty is oh-so-cold.

Honestly, I am not a big fan of dystopian novels. They are just too ‘real’ in their cold, bitter vision of a world with no color, no joy, no true happiness. There was much to send chills over my skin in Irradiance. But to tell you true, the very bleakness of the world of Sindra gives warms and promise, hope, to a book that ends by being a story of possibilities, sacrifice, and new beginnings.

Overall? This first of The Dream Guild Chronicles shows stunning promise for lovers of dystopian novels and gives a calculated warning about the direction our own world faces in the new future.

This book was provided to me by the author in return for a realistic review. All thoughts are my own.
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on 19 March 2014
I love stories that gradually unravel a hard core warning at its centre. I often wonder if an author wrote a story to a theme, or whether the themes evolved out of the writing.

For me, Irradiance tells the story of one family discovering utopia is based on a lie. It captures the tipping point where society is no longer compatible with individual freedom, and where the illusion of happiness is found by unquestioning adherence to dogma. A paradigm where political leaders are so chained to their ideology, their quest for perfection, they would rather drag everyone over the cliff than allow a few brave souls to forge a different path.

David Bruns has created a world where purity has no room for compassion or love, and where life can be “recycled” the moment it ceases to have value for the greater good. This society is shocking. Brutal. Callous. Right to the end, its citizens, even the protagonists, seemed switched off to the true horror of their culture, the urgency of their situation struggling to break through their learned adherence to society’s diktats.

The pace moves steadily forward with vivid and detailed world building at the beginning, picking up as events spiral out of control towards the end. I loved the gradual awakening of Maribel and Resse to the power of their emotions, that they now had words to legitimise their feelings for each other. Each had their own gifts and I enjoyed the science explored through both characters.
Irradiance is the start of a much bigger story where the children will no doubt come into their own. I am very much looking forward to the next in this series.

(I was gifted a copy of this book.)
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