Welcome to the People’s Republic of America circa 2034.
The cold civil war that had been brewing since the early 20-teens has turned hot and yielded two countries across a permanently split central North American continent: a bright blue bi-coastal & Great Lakes hugging progressive People’s Republic and a deep red central plains, Rocky Mountain and gulf coast new United States.
Things are hunky-dory in the new US of A – a capitalist republic stretching from eastern coal country westward to open desert beyond the Great Salt Lake. Life in The Blue, however, is more reminiscent of present day Venezuela.
An uneasy truce exists between the USA and the PRoA; and the huddled masses of the new socialist state of California yearning to be free are penned in by a wall built by Mexico on the south and a deadly neutral DMZ on the east.
Enter Mitch Rappian badass Kelly Turnbull, a US special forces dynamo charged with infiltrating the People’s Republic to rescue a red politician’s daughter and liberating a hard drive containing state secrets from the Blue Stasi.
Crisply paced, tightly written and exceedingly plausible, Schlichter’s People’s Republic is a picture of a Dorian Gray state consumed with political correctness, class hatred, economic failure and cultural rot.
Consider the New Utopia: proles are issued ration cards (called “rat cards”) by the elites, the worker bees wear blue shirts and denim slacks as they serve their masters, and a slip of the tongue such as calling a food facilitator a waitress or mis-gendering a “people” can land the miscreant in front of a Revolutionary Court.
Schlichter’s Rainbow Coalition dystopia will give you the creeps.
Note: there are three Kelly Turnbull novels – People’s Republic, Indian Country and Wildfire.
All three are available in e-book formats. Print copies do exist but are more difficult to come by.