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by D. A. Winstead

OHIO 2029 is set to be an Orwellian thriller about a post economic collapse of America. In 2015 the “Black Crash” devastated the US economy and many believe that Washington insiders, democrats, are to blame. 14 years after the crash we find the country split into blue and red, north and south, only this time the south has won. Washington is all but eliminated and a small faction of republicans, those not intimately connected to the original regime, are now in charge…on a smaller scale. Four states control a country that is divided with a portions of the population confined to “Zones.”

Those forced to live in the Zones are considered responsible for, and supporters of those, who caused the crash. Zoners believe the government owes it to us to take care of us. They want a bigger government to include more “hand outs.” No one  in the zone is allowed to work and must survive on the very limited resources the republicans see fit to give them. This includes limited electricity to the point that lights come on at 7 AM and go out at 7 PM. In the dead of winter, no electricity means no heat. A repeated theme throughout the story is “those in the zone need to learn their lesson.”

Once we get into the story, we find Mary Catherine Marshall, 18 and in love, heading to Cincinnati and one of the worst zones in the country to be with her childhood sweetheart. Maddy Garner has loved Mary Catherine forever. But Cincinnati isn’t safe and it is soon discovered who Mary Catherine is, or better, who her father is. Senator Marshall, is a prominent man of political power and the leader of one of the Red States. He’s written laws and pushed for even more limits for habitants of the zone. The story really takes off when Mary Catherine is taken hostage.

But those in the zone aren’t the only ones who will learn a lesson before the story ends.

That’s basically the gist of the story, without giving away details, and I’ve left you to read the book.

With his background and degrees D. A. Winstead brings an amount of credibility to the story.  Makes it more the scarier when I think of the future.

Personal opinion? What did I think of the book? Let’s start with I’m not a fan of prologues and if you must use them, keep them short. The prologue was over long and contained nothing that couldn’t have been worked in later. The actual story, with characters and places we could care about, didn’t happen until chapter 5. In this writer’s opinion, the author started too early. The inciting event for the main character, Mary Catherine’s capture, doesn’t happened until far into the book. I feel the author spent too much time building us up.

Would I read this again? Probably not. Would I recommend the book? I have a few people I know would definitely enjoy this read. Bottom line for this reader the premise is good, but the execution lacked. Take that for what it is, my opinion.

I found the book to be preachy and predictable with themes being repeated frequently.

This isn’t the first America is going to crash book I’ve read. The ideas in this book, to include the zones and everyone being reliant on some bigger entity for survival, is one that usually plays out in these types of books. If you enjoy Ohio 2029, you might also enjoy Agenda 21.