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5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended, 8 Sep 2014
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“The BioMass Revolution” by Nicholas Sansbury Smith is an engaging and thought provoking post-apocalyptic science fiction novel that had me hooked from the first page.
The state of Tisaia holds its citizens on a tight leash with few civil rights in exchange for the privilege of a sheltered life with food and energy supplied by Biomass power. Smith has done an excellent job at depicting this new world with its walls, tunnels and wastelands and its tough dictatorship.
It is a scenario that hits home since energy sources on our planet are getting scarce and we all must wonder what the levels of humane conduct after an apocalypse would be.
The Roman sounding names reminded me very much of the violent and yet philosophical and honourable ancient culture. Our hero Spurious and the Tisaian society bear resemblance to the good and bad themes of those times.
Spurious is a state worker whose personal convictions urge him on to question and challenge the authorities, a fascinating character who will play a significant role in the revolution of the title.
Understated, subtle and multi-layered this is a gripping read that will appeal to a wide audience, an inspiring moral tale and a great action sci-fi thriller, too.
Highly recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A thought-provoking and prophetic insight into Earth's future, 18 Aug 2013
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The BioMass Revolution is a fascinating, sombre, and ultimately inspiring story of man's fight for survival post nuclear war, set at a time when a semblance of civilisation has re-emerged from the ashes.

It took me a while to sink into this story due to the extended collection of viewpoints that include two main characters who thread through to the end. Give it time. The numerous characters present an overview of the different factions in a war between revolutionaries and the now dominant State that controls the energy source, Biomass. These layers are needed to give the reader an awareness of the different factions manoeuvring together for the uplifting climax and convey the ever present threat of death. There are a couple of twists: one relationship twist that I suspected, and one relationship, right at the end that I did not, but with no foreshadowing that I could find looking back.

The story's strength lies in its understated horror of the aftermath that follows nuclear war. The author ably shows how human ideology can easily diverge depending on personal interests. If you are top of the chain in a state that has carved a reasonable standard of living, self-interest easily translates into protecting your followers--electorate/citizens--within a thinly-veiled dictatorship. Anyone outside the inner circle of power is redefined as the enemy. Compassion and human kindness to fellow man is forgotten. This is man at his cruellest. The hope in this story is that when poverty and destitution and suffering eventually do seize the opportunity for revolution, there are still those living the good life who will rise up and defend the unfortunate against the unacceptable.

Even though it was disconcerting to have so many characters introduced then go, as the story progressed, I appreciated the numerous layers being laid one upon the other as the culmination of a revolution approached.

Overall, this book is a frightening insight into what lies in store for mankind if we continue to raid Earth's resources and allow corporations (that exist today) to control access to our basic needs for survival. I can highly recommend this book.
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The Biomass Revolution: 1 (The Tisaian Chronicles)
The Biomass Revolution: 1 (The Tisaian Chronicles) by Nicholas Sansbury Smith (Paperback - 14 Mar 2013)
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