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On The Table Read Magazine, “the best book magazine in the UK“, Louis Saunders’ The Retreat has post-pandemic vibes after a deadly airborne virus almost wiped out humanity and teenage Jasper wants to break free of the underground Bunker the survivors now live in.
Published on 13th October 2023, 22 year old Louis Saunder’s debut novel, The Retreat, stands out in the YA literary crowd. With a narrative and dystopian world inspired by the recent post-Covid zeitgeist, Saunders shares his vision of life in the Bunker and a normality halted due to the ravages of an airborne virus.
In The Retreat, three eighteen-year-olds are struggling with life below ground, seventeen years after an airborne plague nearly wiped out humanity. Milquetoast nerd Jasper Huxley resents his low station in the Bunker. Unlike his best friend, outspoken lad Marcus X, Jasper is denied entry into the Scouts, a select team of men, clad in hazmat suits, who brave the Earth’s infected surface to scavenge for resources, all while warding off an armed group called the Retreaters.
Embittered by the rejection, Jasper gets dragged into a conspiracy group who tell him the ‘truth’ about the plague: that it’s just a ruse to keep them all trapped underground, subject to the whims of the Bunker’s despotic leadership. Desperate to win the affections of his life-long crush, sweet-but-elusive Hattie Osborne, Jasper takes part in a daring scheme to escape the Bunker. However, the unstable young chap buckles under pressure, and his spiral into mental collapse threatens to uncover the conspiracy – as well as some difficult truths about his past.
Captivating audiences with its dark, mature, action-packed storytelling (which will appeal to fans of works like The Hunger Games and Maze Runner), The Retreat highlights Louis Saunders’ full potential as an author, whilst delivering a storyline that many more experienced writers would be proud to claim as their own.
22 year old author Louis Saunders lives in London, studying for his final year as a law student. He loves writing and listening to music, especially 80s/techno.
The Retreat is his first novel.
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