Along the Perimeter – Steven Healt

Many years ago, a fog spread over the world, making it inhabitable. However, many people were saved by an alien race known as the Amboians. They installed a shield that keeps the fog out. They also provide stability to the world, running the government and making sure humans are provided for. We follow along as attacks start happing along the perimeter, and we find out that there is much more to this world than meets the eye.

I, Hannah, read this book for IndiePalooza, and it was a treat! Healt shines in his worldbuilding and creation of this lot of characters. The plot mixes the dystopian genre with aliens and old world issues. We see this through the cast of characters. FIrst, there is Carter Gerro, one of the first humans to join the city guards in Amboy, the central city. Through him we get to see the political undertones of the world as it stands – how the Amboians can be seen by humans as either godlike beings or as the politically motivated beings who want to control the world. He tells us often about the alien’s backstory, and how long they have been in control. Carter Garro seems to be the naïve character, the one who wants to do right overall and may end up losing his hope. I can’t wait to see what happens with him.

Then we have Cordelia Faucher, a Haze Walker. She is a redhead, so I am already partial to her. But she is also a scavenger who goes into the haze (with the assistance of technology) to obtain items from before the Haze hit the world. I loved how she gave us glances into a world that was more similar to ours. She also has a mystery on where she came from that comes out as she travels the Haze, and I greatly enjoyed it.

Last we have the Amber Waves crew, a mercenary team that doesn’t like the term mercenary! I loved all of them. They are a found family of different people, and Healt uses them in an expert way to teach you about the different ideologies of this world, the different places they are, and the different background and inner workings of Amboy the city. Their banter is so cute, and the way they are always there to support one another layers the book well and brings all the characters together at the end for the ultimate battle.

Overall, this book was super enjoyable. I enjoyed all I found out about this world, and the little nuggets about the old world. I really enjoyed the way Healt layers the characters and their backgrounds, and was excited to see the epilogue leave me with more questions to be answered in the next book. I will also say this book reads almost like a group of stories you would read week to week in a newspaper, similar to how Dickens or Austen wrote. We get perfect little stories that build to a greater story. Pick up this book if you enjoy some fun sci-fi/fantasy with straightforward writing and interesting adventures!

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