Thursday, August 9, 2012

Lily's Review of The Water Thief, by Nicholas Lamar Soutter

The Water ThiefCHARLES THATCHER is a private citizen, which is to say that he’s the private property of the Ackerman Brothers Securities Corporation. He’s got problems: the cost of air is going up, his wife wants to sell herself to another corporation, and his colleagues are always trying to get him tossed into the lye vats.

But when he discovers a woman stealing rainwater, he sees his chance to move up in the world, maybe even become an executive. He reports her, painting a picture, not just of a thief, but of a seditionist and revolutionary, someone who believes in that long-dead institution called “government.”

When she suddenly vanishes, he fears the worst and begins trying to track her down. What he finds is a nightmare far worse than he’d imagined—that his report on her may actually have been right.

Now engaged with a small rebel group, Charles learns about life outside his corporation. But in a world where everything is for sale and lies are more profitable than the truth, he begins to wonder if even these revolutionaries have something to hide.
Published April 20th 2012 by CreateSpace  
Lily's Rating: didn't like it it was ok liked it (my current rating) really liked it it was amazing

This book really reminded me of a movie I recently watched with Justin Timberlake called 'In Time' (2011). This movie is set in a futuristic age where people live to the age of 25, then a clock on their wrist activates and counts down a year. Time is actually the currency of this world, and you work to get more time, you use time to buy the things you need, etc. It was actually really really good so I recommend you check it out. 

The reason why I am bringing this up is that in this movie, there is a 'system'. The 'system' is what makes the world revolve. This 'system' is what dictates the ways of life, how it categorizes people, how it controls people. And in 'The Water Thief', such a 'system' exists.

People are brainwashed to believe certain things. They are pawns in a game that only the ones holding the power can win. In some cases, the ruthless will rise to hold some of that power.  It is a cut throat, dog-eat-dog world. But there are a select group of people that know the truth, and want to rebel or beat the system. They gather in dark corners, 'off the grid', and plan on how it can be done, and prepare for it. They infiltrate the enemy to gather as much information as possible, lying patiently in wait for that moment... that moment when the plan is activated and they can be free of the 'system' and open the eyes of the world.  Are they completely over their heads?  Is it hopeless? Is it a suicide mission? Can it really be done? 

Ahhhhh won't be telling you here. You will have to find out for yourself and pick up this novel. 

I was not wowed by 'The Water Thief'. There was enough action to keep my interest. But my biggest problem with this novel was how preachy it felt. There was a lot of discussion, especially in the last third of this novel, about the evils of their society (or the system) that felt very repetitive. It was somewhat beneficial to understand the system that governed this society... but it went on and on for a while. I am an action girl. Long speeches make me yawn and go for a nap!

Without a doubt, this was a well written, and thought provoking dystopian novel, which for the most part, I did enjoy. The action scenes were fluent, believable and definitely elevated my heart rate. It was a world that struck a fearful chord... it was not a pleasant place. 

The character development was excellent!  I was very emotionally invested in some characters, while really disliking others... which by the way, is a big factor in why I am so conflicted with the ending. That is all that I can say about the ending without having to enter big spoilers... just... was conflicted. 

It is definitely worth a look and I would recommend it to readers that are into dystopian novels. 

Purchase Links:

About the Author:

Nicholas Lamar Soutter was born in Boston, Massachusetts.  He graduated from Clark University with Bachelors’ Degrees in Philosophy and Psychology, and began publishing award winning essays on politics and the social sciences.

He was represented by the Donald Maass Literary agency for 5 years, and currently teaches a weekly workshop called “The Business and Craft of writing”, helping writers to hone their skills, improve their work, and get an agent.

His latest book, The Water Thief, is a near future dystopian novel about a man trying to find his place in a world conquered by corporations.

Nicholas lives in Massachusetts with his wife and two children.

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