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Book Review: “Our Dried Voices” by Greg Hickey (Review request from the author)

Greg Hickey’s 2014 science-fiction novel “Our Dried Voices” feels like the lovechild of George Orwell’s “1984” and Ira Levin’s “This Perfect Day.” For more information about Mr. Hickey and his work, click here.

NOTE: A digital copy of this book was generously provided by the author in exchange for an honest review

Greg Hickey’s science-fiction novel “Our Dried Voices” feels like the lovechild of George Orwell’s “1984” and Ira Levin’s “This Perfect Day.” Having read both of those wonderful dystopian classics many years ago, I found Hickey’s book to be heavily atmospheric and of both a despairing yet ultimately hopeful mood. Most importantly, I found myself deeply involved with main character Samuel. It was tough watching him fight an uphill battle to bring himself and his people to a higher plane of understanding and living. Samuel’s discomfort and regret were palpable as he was faced with the realities of living
in a future world filled with so much possibility, so much greatness — and yet so many limitations. The irony of one determined man trapped by the restrictions of a blind, unseeing society also reminded me a little of Howard Roark from Ayn Rand’s monument “The Fountainhead.”

Samuel has a unique, singular vision, and this vision takes him on a quest. He can see beyond the limitations of his community; he has innovative ideas and knowledge that was only gained by his innate curiosity and craving to know, learn and discover. Without these qualities, our hero would not have stepped beyond the confines of the Colony or ever questioned reality; he would never have learned of another life or thought it possible to live that life. The book constantly reminds the reader that these qualities are both a blessing and a curse, as Samuel’s long, hard journey proves throughout.

This gritty work of fiction is relevant to today’s events, as we seem to be creeping ever closer to the vision eerily imagined by George Orwell. Samuel, Penny and the Colonists face a real catastrophe of human thought, ambition and validation. Hickey’s novel
asks the important philosophical question: are we truly validated as human beings if we are deprived of the very things that make us human? Flesh and blood on the outside, dead souls within — this is not what the Creator intended for us, and Samuel is on a quest to prove it.

Readers will find Hickey’s narrative as intelligent and descriptive as Orwell’s, with a message speaking to the modern-day consequences of collectivism, “groupthink” and mass hysteria. We are living this reality right now in the wake of COVID-19. We as a society are being manipulated by a not-so-secret evil force pulling the strings of our humanity. We will either wake up like Samuel and strive for greatness and freedom, or continue to rest in the pasture like the sheep we’ve been programmed to be. I highly recommend taking this journey with Samuel and Penny. You’ll finish the book in awe of how a work of fiction can highlight what’s happening in the real world in the eeriest of ways.

I can’t help my shelf! I’ll start Mr. Hickey’s novella “The Theory of Anything” soon; I also look forward to reading his next book “Parabellum” (coming Fall 2020). More reviews on the way; please stay tuned!

Forever Between Pages, now more than ever —

Allison xoxo


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