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3.9 out of 5 stars
3.9 out of 5 stars
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on 13 April 2014
This novel is set about 30 years in the future. The Republic of England is a vassal state of a corporatist, crypto-fascist European superstate dominated by Germany. The heir to the throne is in exile in Switzerland and the continent is descending into armed insurrections and border disputes.

A lucky few English people live on the 'red estates' where their lives are strictly regulated in return for welfare payments; the rest must struggle to make ends meet under a regime of extortionate taxes, intergenerational mortgage slavery and euthanasia.

Against this backdrop, a new intake of young offenders arrive at Camp 37, a privatised prison run in the style of a National Service boot camp. It soon becomes clear, however, that the men are not there to be rehabilitated, but to be viciously exploited.

If that were not bad enough, there are more sinister developments occurring. A second Reformation and a wave of religious fervour has swept Europe following the discovery of some disturbing, extra-canonical books of the Bible. One of the inmates of Camp 37 begins to have terrifying religious visions which will drag his fellow prisoners into a tragedy.

I found the book very gripping and read it almost in one sitting. It is very well paced and believable, and I liked the little newsflashes at each chapter heading which outlined the political situation outside the prison. Fans of young-offender films such as 'A Clockwork Orange' and 'Scum' will enjoy this novel, as will anyone who enjoys bio-horror such as the films of David Cronenberg.

I do have three criticisms of the book however which is why I have not given it the full rating. Firstly, there are quite a few typographical errors, particularly in reported speech, which is slightly offputting. It needs a good going over by a copy editor.

Secondly, I found it a little difficult to distinguish some of the characters as there are so many of them.

Thirdly, I thought the supernatural/religious themes slightly out of kilter with the themes of the rest of the book. It was almost as if the idea for another novel had been uncomfortably tacked on to provide a plot device. I was left wondering what all the religious stuff was really about; it would make a good book in itself, but here just seemed to be unresolved and unclear.

Overall however it is a great read and I think Mr Calvin is one to watch for the future.
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on 19 July 2013
Just finished Camp 37 and was not disappointed. This is set in the future where the EU rules this country and has set up camps to rehabilitate young men and women who have fallen foul of the law. Camp 37 holds 100 teenagers The teenagers have a choice of what programme to follow to earn credits for their families of course the medical programme pays the highest credits read the book to find out why. Highly recommend although I am pleased to have got this book when it was free.
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on 23 April 2014
Clockwork orange meets 1984 meets young adult fiction.

Disturbing, well written and either hard to put down or hard to pick up again depending on our viewpoint.
Not for the faint of heart , nor a light read.
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on 21 August 2013
But didn't really deliver. None of the characters were developed enough to be truly interesting, the story was followed too vaguely to be gripping and the story petered out without having ever really got going. I wasn't convinced by the choice of the EU as the bad guy given the lack of human rights afforded to the testers and the fact that human rights seem to be one of the main EU buzzwords. This story could have been so good but I felt rather disappointed when I got to the end, and not in a good way.

Technically there were quite a few editing problems and some very bad grammar and seeming misunderstanding of the meaning of certain words.
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on 13 May 2013
Wow !!! Just finished this book after reading it solid for 3 days. Fear the future !!! An England ruled by the European Union, camps like WW2 stalags and a future more realistic than Orwells 1984 this is a groundbreaking concept that makes you want to run from the EU kicking and screaming.
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on 23 September 2014
This is a disturbing look at a future Britain. Brilliantly written, the plotline is gripping, the characters are flawed but most of them are likable & once you start reading you won't want to stop till the end. Definitely one that will stay with me for a while. Well done Mr Calvin!
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on 4 June 2014
A dark peak into what could possibly be the future. Young men exchanging credits for their family's in exchange for becoming test subjects in experiments. I enjoyed this book.
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on 19 August 2013
Liked this book a lot.

Keeps your interest throughout and the story is credible, not hard to see how things could develop into the described scenario..
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