Book Review: The We and the They by Kyra Ann Dawkins

This was a DNF for me, simply because I was not the reader for this book.

I found the opening, which was a note from the author, to set a tone for the book that probably negatively impacted my view of it, though I really liked the idea of community it seemed to be pushing. In the opening note, the author says “Trust me” and that the story “will make sense as we go along.” But, I don’t think I’m in the mindset to wait for something to make sense without being entertained or enticed first. The setup came off as a bit supercilious and didactic without yet earning my trust, perhaps. Maybe the pay off is worth it, as this has a lot of good reviews here. But I found it, plus the vague nature of the narrative, keeping me at a distance from joining any “we.”

So much of this book reminded me of Octavia Butler’s THE PARABLE OF THE SOWER. I’ve only read the graphic novel adaptation of that, but some of that story did not resonate with me either (the settler aspects and space colonization, perhaps). But the pre-utopian setting and the horror of escaping a dystopia to create true community were there. Also the binary of “We” and “They” reminded me Butler’s other work, where the Other is explored — Lilith’s Brood and the short story Bloodchild. In those there was something of a “humans treated how we treat animals” aspect in them, where here I picked up something like a farm animal vibe? A lot of farm imagery came to mind as I was reading this.

This book is so short you can hardly go wrong, but the “poetical” text requires a bit too much investment and interpretation for an author I am not familiar with when my time and attention are so limited (again, this is a reader issue more than a book issue likely).

I received a review copy in exchange for an honest review.

TBR: The We and the They by Kyra Ann Dawkins

“Our collective genesis guides our heartbeat as We run.”

With nature reclaiming cities and mountainous tides drowning islands, a group of individuals — known collectively as the We — find themselves ravaged by hunger and struggling to survive. When another community — the They — promise them luxurious meals, the We are unable to decline.

After following the They to their farm, the We begin to notice some mysterious habits: odd sacrifices, talk of flames, and a strange book. Follow along as the We uncover the truth behind the secretive group and learn the most important part of being human.

The We and the They is a fiction novel set in a world crumbling underneath the grip of the Great Famine. You will enjoy this book if you are fascinated by oral tradition, you like considering questions about community and identity, or you just want a break from curating your “I.”

I’m interested in how nature will be portrayed in this story. See more on goodreads. 

TBR: A Killing Game (A Curtis Westcott Crime Thriller, #1) by Jeff Buick

Born into a wealthy and powerful Boston family, Renee Charlebois has it all. Except for one small detail – she’s been abducted without a trace. Who took her, and why, is a mystery.

The case gets dropped on Curtis Westcott’s desk, but Boston’s Chief of Homicide has little to work with. No clues, no body, no motive. Renee had no enemies, no financial skeletons in the closet, and no bitter ex- boyfriends. Curtis and Aislinn Byrne, his go-to detective on tough cases, work the file hard but come up empty. Then Westcott attends a party and overhears a story that catches his attention – he and Aislinn have their first break.

They dig in and unravel a complex series of crimes tied to Renee’s disappearance. As they peel back the layers they are convinced Renee is still alive, but that her abductor is on a precise schedule and has every intention of killing her. It’s a bizarre and twisted game, and time is quickly running out.

A Killing Game is Book One in the Curtis Westcott series, set in Boston.


I don’t know if I like this game.

Read more on Goodreads. 

TBR: The God Queen by M.L. Tishner

The return of the God Queen is not what everyone hoped…

Humans have long since spread their numbers among the stars. Now far, far into the future, war has torn the Tyre Star Cluster into two major political factions. The militant Dominion have gained the upper hand in the last decade with the murder of Niklaryn Ettowa, the progressive Federation’s champion. Some considered the war to be almost won.

Yet there are those who claim the war will not be ended by mortals…but by the rebirth of the gods.

Rei lived most of her life bartending on one Earth’s backwater towns. She daydreams of something more, traveling the stars, and destroying the man who murdered her brother Niklaryn. Her dream is within her grasp only if she accepts her fate as the God Queen.

Bronx is disillusioned with being a reincarnated god, let alone a reaper. He pays his penance by isolating himself and taking up the mantle of a combat medic. When the sister of his old mentor Niklaryn storms in to join the cause will he find something worth fighting for?

Together with others, they must help the Federation tip the scales in their favor, but clashing plans for the gods threatens to tear it all apart.

Jupiter Ascending meets X-Men in this epic New Adult space opera bursting with star-crossed romance, elemental magic, and an adventure across the star cluster, perfect for fans of A Spark of White Fire.

Talk about divine rule!

View more on Goodreads.

TBR: Scharlette Doesn’t Matter and Goes Time Travelling by Sam Bowring

Ever since Scharlette’s parents gave her a name no one can really pronounce, she’s been stuck in a bit of a rut.

She hates her job in airport security, making people take their belts off before they fly away to exotic locations she can only dream about. She lives in a small apartment with large repayments, drinks bargain bin red while she watches Star Trek, and misses her beloved sister, Jenelope, lost to an exploding sandwich press, ten years ago.

Scharlette fears she might live out her entire existence without doing anything important, or mattering to anyone. It still comes as quite a surprise when a handsome time traveller named Tomothy appears out of nowhere and verifies she is correct – that, according to his records, she doesn’t matter at all.

Scharlette isn’t sure this news is as wonderful as Tomothy seems to think it is, but as he explains …

Given her life was to have no impact on the timeline whatsoever, Scharlette is free to travel time and space, and have amazing adventures with heedless abandon.

This sounds hilarious.

View more on Goodreads.

TBR: The Altered Wake (The Sentinel Quartet, #1) by Megan Morgan

As long-dormant superpowers awaken, a young woman faces a terrible dilemma: betray her nation or hunt down her best friend?

The future. Earth’s governments have fallen, succeeded by a unified military order. An elite group of soldiers, the Sentinels, protect Cotarion from marauders and neighbors alike. Within, shadowy forces at the highest levels conspire for the power they need to enact a mysterious agenda.

But now, something has changed.

Men and women have emerged, displaying superhuman abilities powerful enough to threaten the established order, and the High General commands Sentinel Cameron Kardell to track a superhuman gone rogue. A superhuman who holds the key to these powers’ origin. Who happens to be Kardell’s best friend. Who will reveal the truth of Cameron’s own origins.

The Altered now wake.

I’m now calculating all the reasons I would consider killing my bestie…

View more on Goodreads.

TBR: Battle of the Soul by Carl Alves

Andy Lorenzo has no family, few friends, poor social skills, and drinks and gambles far too much. But in a time when demons are becoming increasingly more brazen and powerful, he has one skill that makes demons cower in fear from him — he is the greatest exorcist the world has ever known.

In Battle of the Soul, a supernatural thriller that is a combination of Constantine and The Exorcist, since graduating high school Andy has left a long trail of demons in his wake while priests are getting killed trying to perform traditional rites of exorcism. Andy is the Church and society’s ultimate weapon in combating this growing epidemic. He needs no bibles, prayers or rituals. Andy is capable of going inside the person’s soul where he engages in hand to hand combat using his super-human abilities that only reside when he is in a person’s soul. When eight-year-old Kate becomes possessed, Andy finds an elaborate trap waiting for him. He will do whatever it takes to win the most important fight of his life — the battle for Kate’s soul.

Has good reviews on Goodreads.

TBR: Madness of My Dreams by Charles Carfagno Jr.

It takes one second for something to swerve out of control – which is precisely what fantasy author, Charles Inkwell, thought as his car skidded on an icy road and crashed. More than his steering was out of control that night, Charles’s life will never be the same.

After sustaining horrific head injuries and a being in a coma, his dreams began taking on a life of their own.

Does what happen in a dream stay within a dream?

Charles can somehow physically and mentally walk the paths and plots he has carved out on the pages of his book; the experiences in his dreams are so real that he awakens with bruises and scratches across his body. With his newfound circumstances, the delicate fabric veiling fantasy from reality begin to blur.

His outbursts and ‘hallucinations’ cause his family to become afraid of him and admit him to an asylum. Through heavy sedation, he becomes trapped with his dreams.

At the same time, his father’s past is about to become Charles’ future due to an unpaid debt. This debt takes…No installments. No time. Payment is only acceptable in full – or in blood.

Charles isn’t safe in either world…

Stranger than Fiction part 2? Does Will Ferrel have a son or something?

TBR: Small Town Big Money: Entrepreneurship and Opportunity in Today’s Small Town by Colby Williams

Think innovation only happens in big cities? Think again. Forget moving to the city to launch the next big thing only to become another face lost in the shuffle. Entrepreneurs everywhere are finally waking up to the fact that there is a better way. With my book, you can figure out how to build your Big Money empire right from your Small Town.

Small towns are ripe for entrepreneurship! Whether your goal is to start a business in the hopes of financial freedom, to gain a competitive advantage by cutting costs, or simply to make your small town better, Small Town Big Money shows you how.

Read the funny interview Colby Williams gave on my blog here.

He’s making headlines too. 

View the book on Goodreads.