Paul E Hardisty: The Forcing

Today I am taking part in the blog tour for The Forcing. My review is written with thanks to Anne Cater for inviting me on the tour and to Orenda Books for my copy of the book.


Civilisation is collapsing. Frustrated and angry after years of denial and inaction, a ‘government of youth’ has taken power in North America, and deemed all those older than a prescribed age responsible for the current state of the world, and decreed they should be ‘relocated’, their property and assets confiscated.

David Ashworth, known by his friends and students as Teacher, and his wife May, find themselves among the thousands being moved to ‘new accommodation’ in the abandoned southern deserts – thrown together with a wealthy industrialist and his wife, a high court lawyer, two recent immigrants to America, and a hospital worker. Together, they must come to terms with their new lives in a land rendered unrecognisable.

As the terrible truth of their situation is revealed, lured by rumours of a tropical sanctuary where they can live in peace, they plan a perilous escape. But the world outside is more dangerous than they could ever have imagined. And for those who survive, nothing will ever be the same again…


I don’t usually read dystopian fiction, so The Forcing isn’t a book I would usually pick up. However, I was completely engaged the whole way through and I really wanted to know how life would turn out for these characters. I think part of the reason why The Forcing worked so much better for me than other dystopian novels is the vivid description. I was able to picture everything perfectly and this made the setting of The Forcing feel so much more real. 

The Forcing is told mostly in first person and this allows the reader to try and understand the motivations and emotions of the protagonist, David. I found him to be quite likeable, but of course, the story is only his recollection of what happened and there is always a different viewpoint. David is forced to live with a number of other people and it was difficult to know at times which of these people were trustworthy. The characters are really well constructed and I enjoyed going on the journey with them. 

Alongside the dystopian aspects of The Forcing, there is a definite sense of adventure and peril, which makes the story incredibly tense and gripping to read. I really wanted to know if the characters would get out of each situation and how they would do so and it was very difficult to put the book down!

The Forcing is available from Amazon.

You can follow the rest of the blog tour here:

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