Thursday, February 7, 2013

The Office of Mercy: A Novel by Ariel Djanikian

The Office of Mercy: A NovelThe Office of Mercy: A Novel by Ariel Djanikian
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Goodreads: A thrilling debut of a postapocalyptic world for fans of The Hunger Games

Weaving philosophy and science together into a riveting, dystopian story of love and adventure, The Office of Mercy illuminates an all-too-real future imagined by a phenomenal new voice in fiction.

Twenty-four-year-old Natasha Wiley lives in America-Five—a high-tech, underground, utopian settlement where hunger and money do not exist, everyone has a job, and all basic needs are met. But when her mentor and colleague, Jeffrey, selects her to join a special team to venture Outside for the first time, Natasha’s allegiances to home, society, and above all to Jeffrey are tested. She is forced to make a choice that may put the people she loves most in grave danger and change the world as she knows it.

The Office of Mercy is speculative fiction at its best with a deeply imagined, lush world, high-stakes adventure, and romance that will thrill fans of Suzanne Collins, Margaret Atwood, Justin Cronin, and Kazuo Ishiguro.

My thoughts: An argument could be made that this is a Utopian novel rather than the classic Dystopian. Points were made that might be considered valid regarding human suffering but also free agency exists in this society. I didn't feel a particularly strong draw toward any if the characters and I feel conflicted about the conclusion. That said, the attention to detail and story development is excellent and I found myself lost in the book which is no easy feat. It is definitely a worthwhile read. 3.75 stars.

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