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Reviewed by Paul Johnson for Readers' Favorite
In The Forest's Edge by Ines Galiano, for 450 years after the Black Years the citizens of Civis have taken refuge in the caves and created an underworld civilization. To keep a delicate balance, they live under a strict set of rules. One was a Pact with the inhabitants of the topside greenhouses known as the city of Silva. This Pact was the beginning of the second era of civilization. For a special consideration, they will receive food and supplies they are unable to produce underground. Although shaky at times, four hundred and fifty years later, the Pact is still observed. Then everything begins to change when Vogel, one of the fifty-two apprentices beginning his period of instruction in Civis, realizes that something isn’t right as he dreams of things that normal Civis citizens shouldn’t know. Soon he and his trainer, Lerdre, escape the confines of Civis and flee for Silva. Once there they find that their adventure is only starting...
I have always been fond of post apocalyptic stories, interested in the way a particular author determines how the world would be. In this case, I was surprised with a completely new take on an old story line. I appreciated the way the author gave every other chapter from the point of view of the main characters, Vogel and Lerdre. The plot was strong with good organization, leaving the reader eagerly waiting to see what would happen next. The dialogue was realistic, and the descriptions were colorful. Overall, this was a well written, well developed story that I highly recommend to sci-fi lovers everywhere. Well done.