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February 2021 Review: All Too Real Dystopian Thriller

The Line Between

Author: Tosca Lee

Publisher: Howard Books

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Dystopian? Thriller? Yes, please.

Wynter Roth has been ejected out into the world. Growing up in a doomsday cult that preaches the coming end of civilization, she finds herself suddenly thrust out on her own unprepared for all that has been kept from her over the years. While her adjustment to regular life would be hard enough, she finds that the world is on the brink of a deadly pandemic. What has started with a few patients with symptoms has translated to nationwide shutdowns, gas shortages, and general hysteria. Could it be that this is the end of the world the cult preached?

As the reader, you will find yourself rooting for Wynter, the girl with no experience with how daily American life works, as she races across the country in possession of samples that could unlock the disease that is ravaging the world. Chased by her former cult, she finds danger at every turn. The girl who wonders if her soul is lost could become the one to save the world.

I had to check the copyright date on the book to make certain I wasn't reading a non-fiction. While Tosca Lee makes no claim to being a prophet, her story (copyrighted before 2020) strikes close to home as our real world suffers from the COVID-19 pandemic. What would have been a fast-paced, entertaining book became an absolute page-turner as I identified with the fears and mistrust of the protagonist found throughout the novel.

I mean it. I don’t remember a time I’ve read a book so quickly.

As I read, I wanted Wynter to succeed. For a year, we have watched our world descend into fear and mistrust as a pandemic has changed life for all of us. We wish life could return to what it was, and any hope of getting ahead of the disease is something worth cheering. In many ways, we are Wynter. As a world, we have been forced into a world that is unfamiliar, full of masks, temperature checks, and limited resources. We have not cascaded into chaos as quickly as Wynter’s world, but we can see how easy it is to get there.

I think that is why I became so emotionally invested in this story.

I think you will too.

It is why I love the dystopian genre. The author’s ability to show the presence of hope in the worst of situations can translate to an outlook of hope in our own lives. The Line Between does this in a way that is freakishly timely.

I highly recommend this book to any lover of dystopian or thriller novels.

The book is clean. No language. No sex. There are some mature themes involving marriage practices in the cult environment, but Lee handles these tactfully. They are portrayed as rightly wrong, and the protagonist appropriately struggles as she encounters them. Romance is present, but clean. There is some violence. It’s a dystopian world after all. But—this is a book I would have no problem allowing either of my high school teenagers to read.

And, the book has a sequel. Yes, please.

Available on Amazon or your local bookstore (support local business!).

No disclaimer. I did not receive anything from the author, nor was I requested to write this review.


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