Author: Leigh M Lane
Length: 170 pages
Genres: Science Fiction, Drama
TBR Reviewer: Jean
Rating: 3 Stars - A Good Read
A not-so distant future...
For those that wonder ‘what would the world be like if?’, Private Sector offers some disturbing answers. When corporations become society’s governing body, you can bet that competition is fierce and profit margins reign supreme. The dichotomy of life under such a regime is illustrated by the lives of John and Dianne Irwin, a young couple struggling to make ends meet and provide a secure future for their pre-school son. In a dissipating job market and subjected to rampant capitalism at every turn, the future is anything but certain for this little family.
Upon starting this read, I admit I was put-off by the writing style, which I found florid, too-full of redundant adjectives and words that missed the mark of the mental imagery they were attempting to stir. However, I must say that the topic matter and philosophical themes kept me reading! The concepts of a disappearing job market, an only-for-profit economy, a disbanding of public service, and disregard/contempt for arts and culture touched some deep personal chords and describe a world that is not so far removed from the one we live in today.
We see in Dianne the most developed character in the story, and along with her innocent and precocious son, two characters that readers can care about and identify with. Who can’t feel sorry for a five-year-old fighting to understand the world around him and assuming that mommy knows best? A philandering husband, a hard-core addict sister and callous, uncaring parents round out the cast of shallow players whom elicit no interest or sympathy. You are inside many, many heads in this story, the most improbable being that of five-year old Junior, whose inner voice manages to spout some impossibly complex vocabulary and rationale.
Overall, a good book conveys a profound message, and Private Sector certainly delivers on that front. Though short, the story has the framework for a much longer and in-depth narrative, and I can definitely spot TV and movie material here! Dystopia fans will find this an intriguing read.