Book Review: Tracy Lawson’s ‘Counteract’ a Dystopian Thrill Ride

‘Question Authority’? More like ‘Submit to Authority Without Question’. 

CounteractOnce upon a time, the Flower Children passionately exhorted us to “question authority.” Somewhere along the road to the 21st century however, their mantra transformed into “submit to authority without question.” Carried out to its extreme, the latter philosophy ultimately leads to the tyrannical, dystopian society brilliantly described by author Tracy Lawson in her debut novel, Counteract.

Although classified as YA fiction, Lawson’s fast-paced narrative, well-defined characters, and spine-tingling plot combine for a perfectly paced ride through a world in which rugged individualism, free will, and individual liberty have been all but eradicated by central authorities wielding an agenda of control. And what better way to control the masses than through the installation of irrational fear of an undefined, unseen external enemy?

In the oppressive society of Counteract, the United States as we know it has been fundamentally transformed into a series of quadrants, each run by a government agent known as a “Quadrant Master.” Gone is the rich diversity of 50 states bound together by the United States Constitution. In this freedom-killing society, the President and an oppressive government create a false enemy, followed by a government-created solution. In response to the threat of airborne chemical weapons which may or may not exist, the Office of Civilian Safety and Defense has mandated an antidote to “protect” and “save” the American population.

Author Tracy Lawson.

Author Tracy Lawson.

This final and most insidious step is the last in a series of top-down mandates including the banning of cars (for anyone but government-approved individuals), grocery stores, sporting events, travel and virtually anything that makes life a more rewarding and beautiful experience.

Yet as Lawson proves, there is no antidote or restriction that can fully eviscerate the human spirit. The character development of her two main characters – teenagers Tommy and Careen – dovetails nicely with the plot as they ultimately find each other and begin to unravel the mystery of what’s actually happening versus the propaganda that invades their consciousness on a daily basis through Orwellian-named devices like “PeopleCam.”

In Counteract, Lawson creates a depressing, joyless, and paranoid world but she also provides readers with glimmers of genuine hope in the form of all of the characters that comprise “The Resistance.” Expertly juxtaposing plot and characters, she makes it nearly impossible to put the novel down until the very end — which left me wanting more. Good thing she has a sequel planned for release in early 2015!

As a freedom-loving patriot, determined activist, and voracious reader, it does my heart good to know there are authors Like Tracy Lawson who can fuse entertainment and information into a compelling fictional narrative like Counteract – which has more power to affect the culture and the ultimate direction of our country than a dry, non-fiction book most people will never even bother to pick up, let alone read.

For more information, visit, where you can test your knowledge of fact versus fiction with a cool feature called Can You Guess?


Never Forget

Has it really been 11 years since the worst attack on American soil? Hard to fathom and yet even more disheartening that so many have either forgotten or relegated this horrific event to the past, without regard to its significance and implications for the future of our national security.

Since I want to honor all of the heroes murdered on 9/11 on this anniversary, I will abstain from further political comment and simply link to others who are also honoring those lost on that day due to an evil act by a totalitarian ideology.

This past Saturday, Steve and I hosted our annual 9/11 Remembrance broadcast with guests Ellen Karis, Mike Baker and Major General Paul Vallely. Click below to listen:

Listen to internet radio with CRF MEDIA on Blog Talk Radio

Talented actress/singer/songwriter Ava Aston has posted a lovely tribute at her site:

One thing that makes my heart happy out of all the loss and sorrow that happened on that terrible day, is the way we all came together as Americans. How as a Nation we all Stood as One. As a New Yorker it was overwhelming to see first responders, elected officials, and every day people stepping in and stepping up, just diving in to help without pause.

It is very hard to lose the ones we love, but love never ends, and love never forgets. I believe the ones we love are never really far away, they live on in each and every one of us. We carry them with us in our daily lives until we meet them again in heaven.

Visit Ava’s site to read the whole thing, where she’s also posted her video “I Carry You With Me”, a touching and heart-warming song about love, loss and life.

Speaking of talented patriots, here’s a beautiful 9/11 ballad from Lisa Mei Norton:

Never Forget:


Happy 5th Anniversary American Sheepdogs!

I’ve been out in the sun manning a TPV booth outside of Florida Institute of Technology where Obama spoke earlier today (more about that in another post), and am just now getting a chance to post about the 5th Anniversary celebration of the American Sheepdogs of West Chester, PA, where the wonderful Pamela Geller spoke.

My mom Rose, sister-in-law Lisa, brother Ralph and family friend Nancy were all in attendance, having heard about it from several patriot groups in the area. They were excited to see Pamela speak, along with local AM radio host Dom Giordano — and judging from their feedback and the pictures, I missed a fabulous event.

When I checked Pamela’s blog last night, I was delighted to discover they made it into some of the photos, which I posted on Facebook. I had the opportunity to attend one of their weekly Saturday gatherings in front of the West Chester Court House a few years back and was impressed by their passion, dedication, intelligence, optimism and determination. Rich Davis truly is an American hero — God bless him for all he’s done and continues to do, along with everyone involved in this organization, and of course Pamela Geller and Dom Giordano.

Pamela Geller, American Patriot.

Makes me feel genuinely hopeful that we’re going to prevail in November, no matter what the polls want us to believe!

Ralph and Mom pose with “Laura and George”.


Says it all.


God bless Rich Davis and the American Sheepdogs!


Check out more photos and Pamela’s summary of the evening at Atlas Shrugs.

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