Author: Britt Holewinksi
Published By: Delirious Pixie
Reviewed by Melissa Minners
When I was first offered the opportunity to read Schism, I was intrigued by a tale in which all adults are wiped out by a virus leaving the children to rule the world. I wondered if the virus would still be in the air, posing a threat to people who would eventually reach the doomsday age. I wondered if the kids could get it together and figure out how to carry on without cellphones, computers, etc. I wondered…and so, I decided to read Schism to get some answers.
Schism centers on Andy Christensen, a survivor of a military-engineered virus that wipes out everyone over the age of fifteen. Set five years after the event, Andy has decided to leave the island of Bermuda with her friends Morgan and Charlie after Morgan is raped. They head to the United States to see if there are any survivors and to try and live out a new life. Along the way, they meet Ben and Jim Kelly, two more survivors running from a past they’d rather not discuss.
Traveling across the country, the group hope to find a stable place where they can settle down and start anew, especially now that Morgan is pregnant. Unfortunately, it’s hard to find such a place. Civilization as they once knew it is gone and lawlessness prevails. Drugs are now the currency of choice and people are willing to trade a whole lot to get those drugs…even humans.
When the group discovers that someone has gotten their hands on the virus, Jim and Kelly must come clean about their past. It would seem that they were on the run from New York and a man named Sean. Jim and Kelly had destroyed Sean’s stash of the original virus…or so they thought. Now, it’s up to Andy and the others, including some new friends from their travels, to head to New York City and destroy the virus before it can be used again.
When I started reading Schism, I immediately commented that it reminded me a bit of Lord of the Flies. Little did I know that it was that very book that inspired Britt Holewinski to come up with the idea for Schism at a very early age. Her job with the CIA helped shape out the rest of the novel, offering up experiences and travels to various locales used in the story. Holewinski has an excellent grasp on how to create characters that readers can relate to and become invested in. I was totally captivated by the dystopian world story and the characters attempting to survive in this new world order.
And then I reached the end of the book and screamed, “No! You can’t end it like that!” Somehow, in reading the promotional material about Schism, I had totally missed the fact that this was the first book in a trilogy of novels! So completely invested in the story and the characters was I, that I couldn’t take the suspense of not knowing what happens next. This is the sign of a great writer – the ability to draw the reader in so completely that they become horrified when they reach the end of the novel, yearning for more. Fortunately, according to the author’s website, the next novel in the series is slated to come out sometime in the winter of 2017. I can’t wait!