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Reviewed by Ray Simmons for Readers' Favorite
I often wonder if we can keep civilization going along the bumpy road we are currently on. The threat and possibility that war, or something equally as devastating, will throw us into a primitive setback seems stronger than ever before. We have avoided this fate for my entire life and I think everyone breathed a sigh of relief when we thought we had made it through the Cold War relatively unscathed. I suspect our relief might have been premature. The struggle not to blow ourselves up may end up being a constant one. I like science fiction that shows some of the possibilities when we finally do. Some of my friends say I’m a pessimist. I think I’m a realist. That’s why I found When Nothing is All You've Got easy to believe. It is also why I liked it. I think Kirsty Dallas is a lot like me. She is a realist, living among optimists who label her a pessimist. She is also an excellent writer.
I like When Nothing is All You've Got because it is a real, gritty world with real characters. I like that. Too many science fiction writers don’t seem to really know what it’s like to live at the bottom of a vicious food chain. Kristy Dallas does. The writing is great. You need that to pull a novel like this off. The characters and the personal interactions are perfectly displayed and I could relate to every deal, every attempt to stab someone in the back, and every failure of trust. The plot is good and the action moves along at a crisp pace. For me, the setting is the strongest feature in When All You've Got is Nothing, but Nada herself is an appealing element too. But this world created her and, though she is gritty, she is extremely beautiful.