Picking up where New Reality 2: Justice left off, the New Reality series explores life within a deeply caste-divided society drawing on some of the worst 20th century abuses seen in segregated America and South Africa, caste-divided India and even anti-Semitic Nazi Europe.
Fear is an apt title as unmarried-but-pregnant Marie, though born with the privileged ranks, has slumped to the basest tiers of society, the estate rats. The Estate is the densely populated public housing ghetto for the largely untouchable caste that may not speak to or purposely engage with the privileged class. Jobs and opportunities are few for the estate rats. Police harassment and court convictions without trials are rampant. Social hatred for the Rats is so high that self-hatred and suicide are endemic on The Estate.
Marie used to work for Rixon, the private company running the jails that doses the “criminals” with the addictive psychogenic, New Reality, in which the prisoners can no longer tell what is real. With her attempt to blackmail Rixon ruined, Marie cannot tell whether the psychological hell she is experiencing is real, insanity, or New Reality.
This is just as true for the reader. And that’s a good thing. A very good thing.
The wrap-up is less satisfying, but complete in that there is no cliff hanger. Rather, this book could have been tightened up as a extension to the 2nd in the series rather than as a separate book. The first in the series, New Reality: Truth, was a stand alone from a very different facet of reality than the following two in this trilogy.
I received my copy of this novel directly from the author after previously reviewing his thoroughly enjoyable zombie apocalypse novel series [The Alpha Plague, The Alpha Plague 2, and The Alpha Plague 3] which deservedly made my Best Reads of 2015 list. I’ve also reviewed his sadistic opener to his series Crash.
[Check out my other reviews here.]