In a not too distant future, a nuclear war has decimated mankind.
Three centuries later, survivors live barricaded in cities controlled by the Human Empire, while the inhabitants of the countryside have been mutated by radiation and live in the forests surrounding urban settlements, waging war on the humans.
When both her parents die in a fire, Julia is left to cope alone with a highly bureaucratic and regulated system, with very few select allies. As her loyalty undergoes increasingly harder tests, Julia draws attention to herself with her cold blood and fierce resolve in battle.
Constantly on the edge between independent spirit and military discipline, Julia will have to decide how to use the power that has been granted her.
What makes your world special or different?
It’s a post-apocalyptic dystopia, but differs from most contemporary dystopian settings because of exclusively sci-fi elements introduced towards the end of the novel, like space travel and aliens.
How does your main character fit into this world?
The main character was born and raised in this highly regulated society, and is forced to conform and sacrifice to survive. The environment is a hostile place, from physical dangers to political conspiracies.
Tell us about the technology of your world.
The technology of Julia Dream’s world is very much focused on the essentials: while there are advancements in the fields of medicine and engineering, computers and even phones are a rare commodity.
What are the people who inhabit your world like?
After a nuclear Cataclysm almost wiped out humanity, survivors regrouped to form the Human Empire. The Empire is more like a socialist than a fascist dystopia, where the government provides for survival at a high cost in terms of personal freedom.
Are there any non-human characters?
Mutated humans from the nuclear fallout live in the forests around the cities where the humans have barricaded themselves. The Empire calls them “Terrorists” and is engaged with them in constant guerrilla warfare.
At the end of the novel we discover that the Empire has made contact with a race of aliens, the Jovians. The take on quasi-human form out of courtesy, but there is something “off” about them that makes them easily distinguishable in a crowd.
Is there anything special, precious, or unique about your world’s geography or its place in the universe?
Most of the prominent signs of civilization outside the cities are crumbling, regained by forests and woodlands.
What are the two most interesting facts or features of your world?
1) The stark divide between nature and society
2) Intergalactic travel, which is more like a rumor to most people because it’s a reality so far removed from their everyday experience.
How does the landscape or geography of your world affect the plot or theme of the story?
The city and the forest each have their own specific dangers: the city is a place of political intrigue, plots and conspiracies. The Forest is wild and ready to kill you at every step, but in very straightforward ways.
Is there a religious system in place?
The Empire has refuted and banned religion as useless and harmful.
The need for survival blurs the line between good and evil, right and wrong.
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