Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Irradiated Blog Tour with S. Elliot Brandis

Irradiated: A Post-Apocalyptic Novel
By S. Elliot Brandis
Publisher: S. Elliot Brandis
Published: May 12, 2014

Amazon Synopsis:

A man thrust a baby into Jade’s hands. It trembled in her arms. The man had a message: escape from the tunnels and never return, her parents were already dead. Jade had a sister; she was irradiated.

Thirteen years later, her sister, Pearl, is coming of age. Rows of sucker-caps line her arms and hands. Her skin is coral pink. Each night, her dreams fill with visions of violence, depression, and fear.

On the surface, people have grown wild and dangerous. They scavenge, fight, and steal. Below, in the tunnels, they're controlled by a ruthless leader and an army of beings known only as Shadows. When both groups come searching for Pearl, sensing the power her dreams may hold, only Jade can stand in the way.

Book Links

Enjoy an Excerpt From Irradiated

The man thrust a baby into Jade’s hands. It was warm and wet and its cries were muffled. Thick fabric covered its face and body. It trembled in her arms.
“You have to go,” said the man. His voice was urgent and his movements were rapid. Each breath was hot and laboured.
“I don’t understand. Where’s Mum, where’s Dad?” Jade asked.
The tunnel was dark but she could place him by the sound, by the heat, by the air. His panic rushed into her, as though it was her own. He grabbed her with heavy hands and turned her around.
“There’s no time,” he said. “No time, child. They’re coming. The Shadows are coming. You need to get out of here.”
“B-But, what about my parents?” she stammered.
The man squeezed her shoulders tightly, his fingers digging into her muscles and between her bones.
“I’m sorry,” he said. “They’re dead. You have to trust us. This is your only chance. This is your sister’s only chance. You have to keep going and never turn back.”
He pushed her onward, and other hands grabbed her. They grasped her then passed her on to the next set. They all knew what was happening, all knew where she was headed—everybody but her. She clutched the squealing baby in her long, thin arms and yielded herself to their guidance.
      Jade had a sister; she was irradiated.

My Thoughts:

Irradiated is the future Earth, the result of global warming and some other catastrophe such as a nuclear war which has left the world in a barely liveable state. Most of the surviving people live underground, and those who have been irradiated (individuals with strange mutations) live on the surface of the planet.

The story begins when Jade is sent away with her just-born baby sister Pearl to live on the surface to escape the fate of irradiated offspring born to those who are part of this underground society. Irradiated then picks up 13 years later when Pearl has reached her 13th year. Her skin is a vibrant pink and she has sucker caps similar to an octopus along her forearms and hands. Eking out a living on the surface of the earth is difficult and dangerous.

There is always danger from others who are irradiated who might want what you have, danger of death by dehydration in the barren, dried up landscape, starvation, and danger from the Shadows that roam the land, who will kill you if they find you. While out trading for necessities, Jade is approached by an individual and told that Pearl is in danger. The strange thing is, Jade and Pearl do not know this person. Upset by this, Jade senses truth in this mans statement and rushes back to Jade, only to find her missing. Thus begins the exciting and dark search in this dystopian world.

Irradiated is a very bleak look at the future of our planet. Fortunately the author did leave us with a feeling that there is perhaps a possibility for hope for the human race. Jade and her sister Pearl were very likeable, living their lives peaceably until they had to stand up for themselves. I think the violence that Jade displayed is there under the surface in some of us more than others, just as it did not surface in Pearl - it's probably what helped make Jade the leader of the two; that and being older than Pearl. Or maybe it was the mantel of leadership that was thrown on Jade that developed the harshness that led to violence?

I also thought that the Queen was an excellent example of someone who exploits others and uses control for power. The Queen maintained her power through fear and was not above killing anyone who got in her way or was no longer useful to her. She was a power-hungry tyrant who would have taken over the world if she could.

The dialogue flowed and seemed quite natural. Descriptions of the scenery were detailed enough to visualize easily without being too detailed to be boring. I liked the addition of Mongrel. To me he seemed to be a character that espoused hope and friendship and future.

I liked the development and growth in Pearl's character. I'm sad at the way it happened, but I'm glad her experience will bring about good things. I especially liked that Irradiated ended on a note of hope; without that, it would have been a depressing novel indeed.

I did find some profanity in this novel, so that is something to note for my readers who are offended by this. There was no graphic sexual content.

I thoroughly enjoyed this dystopian novel. I would highly recommend it to others who enjoy dystopian reads. I gave Irradiated 4 stars out of 5. I look forward to the sequel.

Thank you to the author for providing a copy of the novel in exchange for a fair and honest review. A positive opinion was not required. All thoughts are my own.

About the Author:

I live in Brisbane, Australia, and work full-time as an engineer. I like reading books and comics, watching movies and television. I also like sport, especially the Gold Coast Suns (Australian Football League) and the Houston Astros (Major League Baseball), and cricket in any form.

Writing is my passion, though, and I work hard to find time for it. I wake up at 5:15 every morning to write before work

I love being an indie author. Why? Because it’s the model that works best for me. I have complete creative control. It gives me the freedom to be as bold as I want when choosing what stories I want to write, how I want to publish and promote them, and choose what editors and designers I want to work with. I also avoid some of the more nefarious elements of the publishing world, including poor royalties and restrictive contracts.

The result? You can be 100% sure that the story you’re reading is the story I wanted to write.

It also makes me incredibly accessible. Want to talk to me? Post on my blog, or contact me at

I always love hearing from readers, writers, journalists, bloggers, and so forth. Drop me a line.

Author Links
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