Who do you trust when your world unravels and everything you believed is a lie?
For the past fifteen years, The Office of Civilian Safety and Defense has guarded the public against the rampant threat of terrorism. Teenagers Tommy and Careen have never known life without the government-approved Civilian Restrictions. For them, there’s no social media. No one is allowed to gather in public places or attend concerts or sporting events. Only a small, select group of adults have driving privileges. It’s a small price to pay for safety.
Now a new, more deadly, terrorist threat looms: airborne chemical weapons that can be activated without warning. The OCSD is ready with an antidote to counteract the effects of the toxins. Three drops a day is all it takes. It’s a small price to pay for health.
Tommy and Careen obediently take the antidote; neither considers stopping when strange things begin to happen. The day the disaster sirens signal the dreaded attack, Tommy shares his last dose with Careen, even though doing so might hasten his death. It’s a small price to pay for a friend.
Follow Tommy and Careen as they uncover a web of lies and deceit reaching to the highest levels of the United States government and join an underground resistance group that’s determined to expose the truth.
Knowledge comes with a price.
Tommy and Careen no longer believe the Office of Civilian Safety and Defense’s miracle antidote can protect them from a terrorist’s chemical weapons. After accidentally discovering the antidote’s real purpose, they join the fight to undermine the OCSD’s bid for total control of the population.
Being part of the Resistance brings with it a whole new set of challenges. Not everyone working for change proves trustworthy, and plans to spark a revolution go awry with consequences far beyond anything they bargained for. Tommy and Careen’s differing viewpoints threaten to drive a wedge between them, and their budding relationship is tested as their destinies move toward an inevitable confrontation with the forces that terrorize the nation.
Where does love fit in when you’re trying to start a revolution?
Once upon a time, Tracy Lawson was a little girl with a big imagination who wanted to write books when she grew up. Her interests in dance, theater, and other forms of make-believe led to a career in the performing arts, where “work” means she gets to do things like tap dance, choreograph musicals, and weave stories.
Follow Tracy on Twitter @TracySLawson
Follow Tracy on Twitter @TracySLawson
1. What was the inspiration behind The Resistance Series?
I was mentoring a friend of my daughter’s when the initial idea for Counteract came about. Chase is a pretty sharp guy and an excellent writer—and when he was in high school I had a lot of fun working with him and editing some of his short stories. We had finished working on a story about baseball, a broken nose, and a broken heart, and were ready to start something new, when he suggested we write scenes in response to the prompt: “What if everyone were on LSD and all thoughts were communal?” It was certainly thought provoking! Chase created the characters Tommy and Eduardo, I created Careen, and right away, we knew we were onto something. Obviously, the story morphed and changed a lot before it became the finished version of Counteract—but that was how it all began.
2. Did you always plan to write another book in the series?
I let my husband read the first draft of Counteract when I was about a third of the way through the original outline. He was enthusiastic and supportive and suggested developing a story line that could be carried forward if I chose to make Counteract the first in a series.
I liked the idea of doing more than one book about Tommy and Careen, and as I wrote the rest of the first draft, I pinpointed elements of the story I’d need to develop and expand to pave the way for a series.
3. How do the characters of Tommy and Careen develop in Resist?
Tommy and Careen are law-abiding citizens until they accidentally discover that the Office of Civilian Safety and Defense lied about the terrorist attack and why it mandated the use of the Counteractive System of Defense drug. They go from being accepting and compliant to impulsively joining a rebel group that’s working to overthrow the oppressive government agency, without having a chance to think about what they’re doing and why.
They’ve only known each other for a week, and their relationship has progressed far too quickly—they became a team, then a couple, without really getting to know each other, and soon they realize they don’t have much in common.
Tommy’s all for the physical aspects of revolution, and is eager to learn about guns and explosives. Careen finds kindred spirits among the older leaders of the group, who are committed to sway the public’s allegiance away from the OCSD by waging a war of information. Her pacifistic approach clashes with his need to prove himself on the field of battle, and further complicates their partnership.
4. What do you enjoy about this series that cannot be found in any of your other books?
The Resistance Series is my first published fiction. My other book, Fips, Bots, Doggeries, and More, is based on a journal kept by my great-great-great grandfather during his family’s 1838 horse and wagon trip from Cincinnati to New York City.
I did a ton of research before writing that book, and amassed two filing cabinet drawers full of information related to the 22-page journal! During the publication process, I nearly went crazy double-checking all my facts and citations, and by the time the book went to print, I never wanted to see another footnote. Fiction? Yes, please!
Now that I’ve had a little break from footnotes, I’m enjoying writing another nonfiction history book. I’m planning to merge my two favorite genres and write some YA historical fiction sometime after I finish the Resistance Series.
5. The main characters in The Resistance Series are Tommy and Careen. Where did you find your inspiration for them?
My characters are a little bit of me, and little bits of people around me, but as I spend time with them in the context of the story, they become less like people in the real world; I don’t stop developing them until they are individuals: unique and unlike anyone else.
Chase created Tommy, and at first I wasn’t as close to him as I was Careen. That changed as I wrote more scenes for Tommy—especially the scene when he and Careen meet. His reactions and his choices came from inside me; before long, he was unique and independent of any outside influence.
6. How does the Office of Civilian Safety and Defense (OCSD) differ from other dystopian governments in young adult series like The Hunger Games and Divergent?
In the Resistance Series, there has been no rebellion, no cataclysmic event. The dystopian world in which they live has been created by fear, engineered by an enemy masquerading as a protector.
The Office of Civilian Safety and Defense was created to protect against the rampant terrorism that has affected the nation for the better part of the twenty-first century. Little by little, the OCSD usurped power from the traditional three branches of the US government.
The OCSD’s long list of Civilian Restrictions was designed to maximize safety and security. Most people don’t consider themselves oppressed or fettered by their lack of freedom. Teenagers like Tommy and Careen don’t know things were ever different. They can’t remember a time when teenagers learned how to drive and went on dates to malls and movie theaters.
7. Tell us where we can find your book and more information about you.
My books are available on Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle, and on Barnes & Noble’s online store. If you live near Columbus, Ohio, you can buy signed copies of my books at three independent stores: The Book Loft of German Village, Mary B’s, and Urban Emporium.
You can get the behind-the-scenes scoop on all things Resistance Series, see book trailers, and check out my blog at http://counteractbook.com. You can also find me on Twitter @TracySLawson and on Instagram as TracyLawsonAuthor.
"Resist" by author Tracy Lawson is a scary kind of book. Scary because whenever I read books that talk about the future I always think that wow, I hope this never really happens. Tommy and Careen are not going to be fooled anymore. They find themselves trying to stop the OCSD's fight to take over all of the people of that day. The book is fast paced and full of action. I cannot wait to read the next book in this series. I give this book a 4/5. I was given this book for a review and these are all my opinions.