The Seclusion by Jacqui Castle
While on a routine assignment scouting the viability of dwindling natural resources outside the massive urban centers most American citizens call home, Patricia ’Patch’ and her co-worker Rexx discover a relic from the past containing dangerous contraband―unedited books from before The Seclusion. These texts will spark an unquenchable thirst for the truth that sees Patch’s father arrested by the totalitarian Board.
Evading her own arrest, Patch and Rexx set out across a ruined future United States, seeking some way to escape the only home they’ve ever known. Along the way, they learn about how their country came to be this way and fall in love. But their newfound knowledge may lead to their own demise.
From School Library Journal
Patricia (Patch) Collins is a true patriot of future America, upholding the restrictive policies of the Board, an unseen entity that saved the United States from terrorism by walling off the country. Residents are under constant camera surveillance, all words are recorded, and people have embedded chips to track their movements. Yet Patch embraces the harsh regulations as the price citizens have to pay for safety and security. Working with her best friend Rexx at the Natural Resources Department allows them the freedom to leave town. Out in the field, they discover items that contradict the history they’ve learned of the great Seclusion, including a suitcase full of books. Patch takes a book, banned for containing “toxic history,” and instantly becomes a traitor. Now enemies of the state and with their own families in danger, Patch and Rexx escape into a wasteland of abandoned cities and horrific sights that only further their increased suspicion of the Board’s party line. This is a dystopian drama that shows the grim rise of totalitarianism with scenes that echo today’s headlines. The author has crafted an intricately detailed world. Intriguing and surprising supporting characters give depth to a somber story that begs for a sequel. VERDICT A must-have for all libraries and fans of sci-fi.-Lee De Groft, Jamestown High School, Williamsburg, VAα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
“Jacqui Castle’s new novel sets the hook in a wickedly-quick heartbeat.Not only does her eerily prescient story keep that hook in placethroughout, it often leads to moments where you feel a chill that’sdriven not only by her words, but also by the words we hear in the newsand social media every day.”
– Mike Rich, writer of Finding Forrester, Secretariat, The Rookie, and Cars 3