On the battlefields of America, even our children will have to fight.
In his most powerful novel to date, acclaimed author Craig DiLouie presents a near future in which America is entrenched in civil war.
After his impeachment, the president of the United States refuses to leave office, and the country erupts into a fractured and violent war. Orphaned by the fighting and looking for a home, 10-year-old Hannah Miller joins a citizen militia in a besieged Indianapolis.
In the Free Women militia, Hannah finds a makeshift family. They'll teach her how to survive. They'll give her hope.
And they'll show her how to use a gun.
"An instant classic that will join the ranks of dystopian futures that at times feel all too real." - Nicholas Sansbury Smith, USA Today Bestselling Author
In a dystopian United States eerily reminiscent of the present, an impeached U.S. president refuses to leave office, starting a civil war. Dilouie (One of Us) focuses the story on orphaned children in Indianapolis who must participate in the war in order to survive it. After 10-year-old Hannah is orphaned, she joins the Free Women militia, looking for a family. The militia is forced to fight for survival, fearing that if the far-right "rebels" and "patriots" win, citizens will be stripped of fundamental rights. The more horrors Hannah witnesses as she assists from behind the lines, the more eager she is to join in on the battles herself. Unbeknownst to her, her 15-year-old brother, Alex, is still alive, but fighting for the rebels. He's not sure he wants them to win, but he knows that if he doesn't fight, they'll likely kill him. Other factions complicate tactical and ethical decisions. Meanwhile, a local reporter and a UNICEF representative work together to try to save children from a war they don't belong in. Dilouie makes his politics plain and occasionally resorts to stereotypes of the political right and left, appealing to readers who agree with him at the cost of alienating those who don't. This gritty, horrifying tale of hate, fear, and hopelessness, sprinkled with moments of love, will leave readers with haunting memories.
Was on the lower end of mediocrity, until I realized what it was. 😲
For most of the book, I was focused on the revolution and was very disappointed in the same way that I disliked The Hunger Games 😡; how it focused so much on the spectacle of the revolution rather than the actual revolution.
The whole time while reading, I’m waiting for the revolution, I’m waiting for the action, and it just doesn’t seem to be coming. It’s all about the navigation of politics, people trying to live in a war-torn environment, and a reporter wanting to write a story about it. On top of waiting for the revolution to actually happen, it often felt like the various factions didn't truly know what they’re fighting for (or at least it was never made clear) ... such is the case with many wars 😔.
It wasn't until about 90% into the book that I realized what it's really about, Hannah's personal journey. This is not the story of a revolution (if it is, it's a very bad one), but rather the story of a child soldier. From losing her mother in the opening chapter, to joining the revolution and The Free Women, to an event that I won't mention for spoilers’ sake, and to a life beyond. Had I known this was the intention from the beginning, I would've enjoyed this book a lot more.
So, for those coming after me intending to read Our War: Don't expect the story of America fighting back to protect its home, or a new take on Red Dawn or Homefront. This is the tale of a young girl's personal experience trying to survive a modern civil war.