A gritty, dark, and gripping sci-fi tale…
Set in Los Angeles of not-too-distance future, West’s edgy debut tells the riveting and complex story of a motley crew of young soldiers forced to pick between losing their lives while fighting for a cause and run away to a peaceful future they long for. Sometime in the near future, a powerful earthquake has left the city of Los Angeles reduced to a concrete desert and trapped in a cesspool of corruption, disease, poverty, and violence. In this landscape, members of Stay Ready Soldiers (SRS), a newly established rebellion of young people, journey down various parts of the city in a single night to fight an elite unit of the President’s army, the Black Hawk Battalion. Equipped with high-tech weaponry and amplified with bionic and cybernetic enhancement implants, the Black Hawk Battalion is a force not to reckon with. However, armed with nothing but run-of-the-mill weaponries and courage in their hearts, Stay Ready Soldiers are determined to see the dawn of the new day. West’s descriptions of SRS’s courageous jaunts are as hypnotic as they are brutal. Despite the lightning fast speed of the narrative, the characters’ underlying relation develops in slow and sure strokes; Samson and Bunchy’s tender bond in the aftermath of the tragedy unfolds with a heartwarming tenderness; similarly, Kali and Geronimo’s burgeoning romance is tender and poignant at the same time. While the major antagonists in the story: the President and his team of elite unit are portrayed with great skill, the minor villains, especially the corrupt police officers are a sadistic bunch of equally despicable folks. West’s prose matches the intensity of his high action plot, and his worldbuilding is topnotch; each group of missionaries are divergent, interacting with the situation in ways that give perception into the characters’ inspirations. Amid gritty action and forays into apocalyptic setting, West thoughtfully addresses the significant themes of fighting for a cause, resilience, personal responsibility, and courage. Readers should be prepared for extreme scenes of graphic violence, physical abuse and rape scenes of minors, and strong language. This unpredictable journey of freedom, bloodshed, and violence will capture and hold readers’ attention until the anticipating final battle between both groups has been waged. A mix of well-constructed action scenes, numerous plot twists, and realistic characters make for a page-turner. West knows how to tell a captivating and entertaining story.
A Night in Babylon
By Michael West
Foundations 4 Readiness
Pub date March 5, 2020
Price $15.00 (USD) Paperback, $5.04 Kindle edition
Categories: Science Fiction