Would She Be Gone, Melanie Harding-Shaw
A Novella in the "Censored City" series, WOULD SHE BE GONE packs a big punch in a short, sharp delivery. A dystopian future awaits, where the Librarian Algorithm enforces censorship of stories and words that could cause trauma or crime (not a future I can get on board with at all). In this world Detective Virginia Wright goes undercover in the criminal world of performance poetry to hunt down a suspected ring of illegal open-access ereader suppliers. Fragile since the death of her mother, separated from her family on purpose, her world falls apart when they are arrested for literary solicitation - providing the words written by her mother in particular.
Now I will admit that I'm normally more than a bit disinterested in dystopian futuristic stories, they aren't my cup of tea at all, but WOULD SHE BE GONE worked for me. Partially it's because it's cleverly constructed, particularly given the shortness of the novella, to provide character development and personal background information, alongside a good plot that is part detective thriller, part dystopian horror, part sticking it to the authorities. There's touches of humour, sadness, romantic attraction and more than enough intrigue to keep you guessing.
The Censored City series consists this far of WOULD SHE BE GONE - Part 1, COMPACT OF FIRE - Part 2 and HELL IS EMPTY - Part 3. Parts 2 and 3 are now on the to be read list.
WHEN THE STATE STEALS YOUR WORDS, YOU STILL HAVE YOUR VOICE. WHEN THEY STEAL YOUR FAMILY, WILL YOU HAVE THE STRENGTH TO USE IT?
In the near future, the Librarian Algorithm enforces tailored censorship to protect citizens from stories and words that could cause trauma or crime.
Detective Virginia Wright is going undercover in the criminal world of spoken poetry to hunt down suppliers of illegal open-access e-readers. She has buried herself in her work ever since her mother died. But when her remaining family are arrested for literary solicitation, her world starts to crumble. And when the man she is supposed to arrest gives her the most precious gift of all, her moral compass is sent spinning.
The Censored City series: A post-analog world on the tipping point of Orwellian dystopia and the women whose choices will determine which way it falls.