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The Walls of Orion (The Walls of Orion duology, #1)

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Orion City has been on lockdown for ten years. Courtney Spencer, a disillusioned barista doomed to live a “normal” life in a quarantined fishbowl, is certain she’ll never see over the Wall again. Until one rainy evening, Courtney unintentionally befriends W, an eccentric customer who leaves a switchblade in the tip jar. The unexpected acquaintance soon opens the door to a f Orion City has been on lockdown for ten years. Courtney Spencer, a disillusioned barista doomed to live a “normal” life in a quarantined fishbowl, is certain she’ll never see over the Wall again. Until one rainy evening, Courtney unintentionally befriends W, an eccentric customer who leaves a switchblade in the tip jar. The unexpected acquaintance soon opens the door to a frightening string of questions that flips everything she knows upside down. Stumbling into a world of secrets, lies, and disturbing truths, Courtney grapples with a burning temptation to look again at the Wall. Surrounded by citizens trained to ignore its looming shadow, she no longer can. Intrigued and terrified to expand her world, Courtney finds herself toeing a knife’s edge between the law and justice, learning quickly that the two are not always compatible. She wants to cling to her morals. She also wants to stay alive. But most of all, she wants to see a certain customer again, despite everything in her whispering W is dangerous. In a gritty urban clash of hope and fear, passion and survival, The Walls of Orion explores the edges of light, dark, and the gray in between.


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Orion City has been on lockdown for ten years. Courtney Spencer, a disillusioned barista doomed to live a “normal” life in a quarantined fishbowl, is certain she’ll never see over the Wall again. Until one rainy evening, Courtney unintentionally befriends W, an eccentric customer who leaves a switchblade in the tip jar. The unexpected acquaintance soon opens the door to a f Orion City has been on lockdown for ten years. Courtney Spencer, a disillusioned barista doomed to live a “normal” life in a quarantined fishbowl, is certain she’ll never see over the Wall again. Until one rainy evening, Courtney unintentionally befriends W, an eccentric customer who leaves a switchblade in the tip jar. The unexpected acquaintance soon opens the door to a frightening string of questions that flips everything she knows upside down. Stumbling into a world of secrets, lies, and disturbing truths, Courtney grapples with a burning temptation to look again at the Wall. Surrounded by citizens trained to ignore its looming shadow, she no longer can. Intrigued and terrified to expand her world, Courtney finds herself toeing a knife’s edge between the law and justice, learning quickly that the two are not always compatible. She wants to cling to her morals. She also wants to stay alive. But most of all, she wants to see a certain customer again, despite everything in her whispering W is dangerous. In a gritty urban clash of hope and fear, passion and survival, The Walls of Orion explores the edges of light, dark, and the gray in between.

46 review for The Walls of Orion (The Walls of Orion duology, #1)

  1. 5 out of 5

    T.D. Fox

    Because why can't I rate my own book? I loved it and had a lot of fun writing it :) Because why can't I rate my own book? I loved it and had a lot of fun writing it :)

  2. 4 out of 5

    Claire

    Oh. My. Goodness. Well. I just devoured that. Absolutely fantastic. Female main character with buckets of gumption led this story in a city sealed off from the rest of the world. W, the mysterious man almost in her life and Jasper the dependable boyfriend who was just too safe and nice were a great touch of romance without turning this into a kissing book. Intrigue, mutants, vigilant, copious amounts of hot chocolate - I mean, aside from a bit more cake, what else could you possibly ask for? And Oh. My. Goodness. Well. I just devoured that. Absolutely fantastic. Female main character with buckets of gumption led this story in a city sealed off from the rest of the world. W, the mysterious man almost in her life and Jasper the dependable boyfriend who was just too safe and nice were a great touch of romance without turning this into a kissing book. Intrigue, mutants, vigilant, copious amounts of hot chocolate - I mean, aside from a bit more cake, what else could you possibly ask for? And the best bit? Getting to the end to learn that a second book will be out soon. I can't wait! Great characters, good worldbuilding, some obvious connections but revealed in a most satisfactory way plus emotional, heart-rending family relationship drama all handled very well. A great book one.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Holly Kammier

    I love this book so much!!!

  4. 5 out of 5

    Kayla Campbell

    This was a great read! Incredible world building, characters I connected with, and a v steamy antihero. I can't wait for the next book!! This was a great read! Incredible world building, characters I connected with, and a v steamy antihero. I can't wait for the next book!!

  5. 4 out of 5

    Christy

    This book is exhilarating and gripping! Written so fluidly and brilliantly, I couldn’t put it down! This will keep you reading long into the night, and thinking about the characters days after!

  6. 4 out of 5

    Ginnie

    Loved this book!! An exciting, suspenseful story. A definite must read!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Danielle Harrington

    Absolutely thrilling read! I'm excited for what T. D. Fox does next! :D Absolutely thrilling read! I'm excited for what T. D. Fox does next! :D

  8. 4 out of 5

    Carol Peace

    Courtney has a job as a barista in a quite run down coffee shop, it's a job she likes and even though it is a long walk from her apartment she finds walking therapeutic her best friend works in the emergency room and her life is plodding along just fine behind the walls until a chance encounter with W which makes her rethink her ambition. The wall went up 10 years ago and life behind it is very much regimented and no one gets in or out, it seems 'they' are working on a cure but no one seems to k Courtney has a job as a barista in a quite run down coffee shop, it's a job she likes and even though it is a long walk from her apartment she finds walking therapeutic her best friend works in the emergency room and her life is plodding along just fine behind the walls until a chance encounter with W which makes her rethink her ambition. The wall went up 10 years ago and life behind it is very much regimented and no one gets in or out, it seems 'they' are working on a cure but no one seems to know what the actual 'sickness' is. When she meets W who comes in for a coffee with 20 sugars she finds herself questioning some of the rules and trying to find where she belongs. This is a great read and does seem to reflect life at the moment without any intention to do so I loved the plot and can't wait to read more T D Fox books. A five star read in my opinion, go on give it a go!

  9. 5 out of 5

    R.K. Emery

    Wow! I just finished this and couldn't be more thrilled I picked it up. I was on the edge of my seat as Courtney was foisted into so much more than she expected. It was filled with adventure, moral dilemmas, dark and light, and so much more. I loved every minute of it Wow! I just finished this and couldn't be more thrilled I picked it up. I was on the edge of my seat as Courtney was foisted into so much more than she expected. It was filled with adventure, moral dilemmas, dark and light, and so much more. I loved every minute of it

  10. 5 out of 5

    Samantha

    Okay - WOW! This debut novel has everything an urban fantasy/dystopian lover could want. I absolutely devoured this book in just one sitting. I can’t wait for the next book!

  11. 4 out of 5

    A.K. Child

    I rarely give five stars, and honestly, there were some editing choices I wouldn't have made, but the story itself was so compelling and interesting, that didn't matter. The world is wonderfully developed and the characters are easy to identify with. Though it's a longer book, it's fast paced, which is strange in this case as it's mostly character development. I'm looking forward to the second book of the duology to get into all the threads that are left hanging from the first book. This is a mu I rarely give five stars, and honestly, there were some editing choices I wouldn't have made, but the story itself was so compelling and interesting, that didn't matter. The world is wonderfully developed and the characters are easy to identify with. Though it's a longer book, it's fast paced, which is strange in this case as it's mostly character development. I'm looking forward to the second book of the duology to get into all the threads that are left hanging from the first book. This is a must read for anyone into urban sci-fi/fantasy.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Holly Krylo

    This book was such a fun read! So many great characters, twists and turns, all the emotions that you felt along with the characters.. so so good!!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Jasmine

    The Walls of Orion is a young adult novel that has the dark, gritty feel of Marvel's Daredevil or DC's Batman, but with the heart of Superman or Captain America. Set in Orion City, a fictional town near Chicago, the story follows Courtney, a twenty-one year old barista who is stuck. Every day is the same, and it's becoming more and more mundane. Ten years ago, a wall went up around Orion City, quarantining residents from the outside word. Since then, life has been repetitive. Dull. Mind-numbingl The Walls of Orion is a young adult novel that has the dark, gritty feel of Marvel's Daredevil or DC's Batman, but with the heart of Superman or Captain America. Set in Orion City, a fictional town near Chicago, the story follows Courtney, a twenty-one year old barista who is stuck. Every day is the same, and it's becoming more and more mundane. Ten years ago, a wall went up around Orion City, quarantining residents from the outside word. Since then, life has been repetitive. Dull. Mind-numbingly pointless. But one fateful day, when a strange customer enters the cafe where Courtney works, everything will change. At its core, The Walls of Orion is a story about superheroes and villains. Vigilante justice; knowing that sometimes following the law and taking matters into your own hands are one and the same. How far will Courtney go with pushing the boundaries of her own morals? I really enjoyed this story. It's fun. It's unique. And it's definitely got a very real feel, especially now. I found Courtney to be relatable and well-written. She's a character you can get behind, and following along as she starts to realize things aren't all they're cracked up to be within the walls of the city is definitely an interesting journey. I also really liked W. Sure, he's a bit strange at first, but the hint of danger he brings makes him intriguing. He's someone you're don't know if you should like or not. Is he a bad guy? A good guy? Or something in-between? The world-building, while contained to Orion City, is still really nicely done. The descriptive words bring the city to life, and it's not hard to picture it in your mind. The plot sucks you right in, and the pacing keeps you flipping those pages, eager to see how everything will play out. I know I found myself immersed in the world of Orion City, and I'm looking forward to the upcoming sequel. If you're a fan of YA novels with superheroes, villains, and a gritty urban setting, check out The Walls of Orion. 4.5 stars!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Marta Cox

    Wow this book had everything I want no make that need in a story. A heroine that I could really get behind, a grey almost anti hero and its all set within a mixture of an urban fantasy and dystopian world. With secretive scientists supposed searching for a cure ten long years has seen this locked down city survive and yet what is the cost ? Society survives and yet it's evolution has gone backwards. All are waiting for freedom but some know the lies told mean there is no real escape. So what hap Wow this book had everything I want no make that need in a story. A heroine that I could really get behind, a grey almost anti hero and its all set within a mixture of an urban fantasy and dystopian world. With secretive scientists supposed searching for a cure ten long years has seen this locked down city survive and yet what is the cost ? Society survives and yet it's evolution has gone backwards. All are waiting for freedom but some know the lies told mean there is no real escape. So what happens when subversive vigilantes take a stand ? Enemies or superheroes, can anyone tell the difference ? I loved this and truly cannot wait for the sequel. I won't give away the plot because it's a journey my fellow readers really need to take. Very different to anything I've read recently and a huge recommendation. This voluntary take is of a copy I requested from Netgalley and my thoughts and comments are honest and I believe fair

  15. 4 out of 5

    Dorothy

    This is a quick read, like a comic book story. Characters are believable. Enjoyed this book and looking forward to book II. I recommend this book to anyone who likes comic book stories.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Shelly

    Brilliant debut novel by T.D. Fox!! I love her writing style. This book has a little bit of everything. Looking forward to the next book~~

  17. 4 out of 5

    Lightmotif

    A relatable protagonist, an intriguing antihero, and just the right balance of action and character development. And themes that make you think, but without being heavy-handed. You would never guess this is a debut novel. Read it; you won't be disappointed!! A relatable protagonist, an intriguing antihero, and just the right balance of action and character development. And themes that make you think, but without being heavy-handed. You would never guess this is a debut novel. Read it; you won't be disappointed!!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Dublin37

    Amazing read, fast-paced and fun. Characters are not flat, but multi-dimensional. Such an amazing backdrop for the story, and even more interesting with what has been happening over the last year. I loved the twists and turns, and when the fantasy jumps into the story the following chaos makes it even more interesting. There are surprises along the way that make you laugh out loud. Loved this book and can't wait for the second one! Amazing read, fast-paced and fun. Characters are not flat, but multi-dimensional. Such an amazing backdrop for the story, and even more interesting with what has been happening over the last year. I loved the twists and turns, and when the fantasy jumps into the story the following chaos makes it even more interesting. There are surprises along the way that make you laugh out loud. Loved this book and can't wait for the second one!

  19. 5 out of 5

    Kyndra

    A Decent, Quick Read To start off, I’m going to be completely honest and say that I read this book because of the reviews — not because I was impressed by them, but because they all felt really fishy. Also because it was only four dollars for the Kindle version. Note: this review is free of spoilers. Overall, I feel like I can really only rate every individual part of the book as “Okay.” The writing was okay, the characters were okay, and the setting was okay. So on and so forth. It was readable and A Decent, Quick Read To start off, I’m going to be completely honest and say that I read this book because of the reviews — not because I was impressed by them, but because they all felt really fishy. Also because it was only four dollars for the Kindle version. Note: this review is free of spoilers. Overall, I feel like I can really only rate every individual part of the book as “Okay.” The writing was okay, the characters were okay, and the setting was okay. So on and so forth. It was readable and to a certain extent enjoyable. I read it all in one day, although I admit that my eyes glazed over more than a few times and I either had to reread a section or just accept that I was getting bored and skim it. The writing worked in most places, but there are some clunky sentences here and there. Some lines felt strangely chopped up and vague. Every once in a while I’d come across one that just plain old didn’t make any sense, even within the context of the passage around it. Part of me wants to dig up some direct quotes to illustrate when I’m talking about, but honestly, you can just read the six sample pages on the Amazon preview to get an idea of what I mean. I will include one quote. “The mask hid it, but the Giant’s face registered something other than surprise.” How is this other character reading this expression on the Giant’s face when the writing EXPLICITLY says that a mask hiding the expression on the Giant’s face? This makes no sense. The characters were good, if a bit flat and inconsistent. The main character, Courtney, was definitely the weakest of the cast. The story makes it out like she changes a lot over the course of the narrative, however these “changes” were really just a series of strange and impulsive decisions that she makes that her internal monologue would then make a big deal out of. Yet the reader is meant to feel that these decisions were indicators of her being “different” and another character tells her as much, in a wonderful example of the “man notices girl because she’s not like other girls” trope. There is some exploration of her childhood trauma at one point in the story, but it doesn’t go anywhere. Her relationship with her family was the most interesting part of the story and her character and yet all it amounted to was a single dramatic scene that was then immediately overshadowed by the next dramatic scene — and subsequently was never resolved. One of the characters, W, said a lot of nonsensical things that were supposed to be deep or different. The main character thinks as much. She even quotes him at one point and another character is, like, “Wow! How deep!” There is a love triangle. It is weak. The setting, pacing, and exposition all go hand-in-hand. The setting itself was interesting, if a bit underdeveloped. Mysteries are introduced in the beginning of the story, hinted at once or twice, and then never resolved. Background characters are introduced, mentioned once or twice, and then turn out to be utterly inconsequential. Information is given to the reader by way of small bread crumbs here and there, in ways that don’t always make sense. Supposedly the common folk don’t know about the people turning into animals and the news is censoring it. A man transforms into an animal in a crowd of people and white vans show up to capture the animal and haul it away. This happens multiple times during the story and has supposedly been happening for a DECADE. How are the people still clueless? The pacing slows to a crawl in some places, especially when the POV changes to a different character and we are taken out of the immediate story and into what felt like strange tangents — tangents that ultimately served little purpose. The reptilian arsonist was incredibly boring, yet kept coming up and delivering more bad dialogue every time he did. Overall, this wasn’t a bad book, even if my review does skew heavily towards the negative. It was interesting. It was not, however, the golden child the reviews promised it to be, with their carefully placed buzzwords and flashy five star ratings. Maybe I’m just bitter and picky. There’s going to be a second book. I may or may not read it.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Amy Johnson

    Orion City is in Quarantine. They have been for a decade now. The people inside have succumbed to the reality of their future-- one where they're never allowed to leave. Yet, the virus that caused them to become prisoners in their own home isn't an average sickness. It's a DNA twisting nightmare that transforms normal people into animals. Insane, raging animals. Courtney is a barista by day, trying to avoid the craziness of her city and her father. She's bored, though, or at least that's what th Orion City is in Quarantine. They have been for a decade now. The people inside have succumbed to the reality of their future-- one where they're never allowed to leave. Yet, the virus that caused them to become prisoners in their own home isn't an average sickness. It's a DNA twisting nightmare that transforms normal people into animals. Insane, raging animals. Courtney is a barista by day, trying to avoid the craziness of her city and her father. She's bored, though, or at least that's what the eccentric W tells her. Their friendship is unintentional and feverish, one that includes gun fights and snow storms and homeless children. But when W is around, Courtney isn't so bored. And that... doesn't bother her? When Courtney finds herself on the precipice between "good" and "evil" with her new friend on the other side, she has to ask what kind of life she wants to live-- a tame, boring one or a daring, morally gray one? Better yet, can she get used to being a little "crazy"? I was in love with this from the get-go. I knew I was going to love a book that was labeled as dystopian. But SUPERHERO dystopian?! Hooked. Instantly. First of all, I want to say that this is a book that's going to stick with you like glue. Fox just has this way of writing things that you dwell on long after you've finished with the book itself. Now only is her descriptive prowess phenomenal, but her way of creating and playing characters that are SO human absolutely blows my mind. When I say this book was one punch after another, I freakin' mean it. The beginning was a tad slow for me. I worried about it, actually, waiting for it to pick up. BUT GOOD GOD when it did, I just-- I can't. I just can't. It all sort of starts when W enters the picture. And everything just sort of falls like dominos. And the romance. Good grief, the romance. Some of the romantic tropes present in this book had me falling on my bed in dramatic pining. Overall, straight 10/10. I'll be recommending this to EVERYONE I know. Full review: https://aejohnsonwrites.wordpress.com...

  21. 5 out of 5

    patri

    my rating 3.5/5 ⭐ the walls of orion spools from the quaint and quarantined humdrum and quotidian sameness of our hard-bitten heroine's small world to the quakingly hectic set of happenings she finds herself witness to with slow and steadfast footing. stuck in all senses of the state-of-being, Courtney squishes down the slice of softness that dwells in her to the depths of her subconscious, going about her day-to-day of brewing beans, betting and bantering with her barista buds until a chain of my rating 3.5/5 ⭐ the walls of orion spools from the quaint and quarantined humdrum and quotidian sameness of our hard-bitten heroine's small world to the quakingly hectic set of happenings she finds herself witness to with slow and steadfast footing. stuck in all senses of the state-of-being, Courtney squishes down the slice of softness that dwells in her to the depths of her subconscious, going about her day-to-day of brewing beans, betting and bantering with her barista buds until a chain of chance encounters and coffee-shop capers bust her boredom and get her caught up in the city's eerie conspiracies. against the chaos of the virus Orion is victim to and the vigilantes its citizens vilify, Courtney becomes enthralled with the odd visits of an enigmatic customer - a charmer of a villainous chap, it turns out - to the considerable envy of the cheerily overbearing cop she's entangled with. considering the tougher topics it tackles, the walls of orion's tone tends towards the lighter; my lone complaints are the cropping up of a couple of tired tropes and the too-common throwing around of the label 'crazy' in less-than-tactful contexts. that aside, its story layers upon a captivating concept with a lively central couple and a chorus of compelling side-plots, and it all sums to a world well worth wading into if only for how thought-provokingly it lines up to our own confined times; i'll surely be on the lookout for its continuation in city of loons! thank you to netgalley and acorn publishing llc for kindly passing on this arc! 💫

  22. 4 out of 5

    Haley

  23. 4 out of 5

    Nishana

  24. 5 out of 5

    Frostandstars

  25. 4 out of 5

    John A.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Melanybooks

  27. 5 out of 5

    Lindsey Carter

  28. 5 out of 5

    Kirstie Ferguson

  29. 4 out of 5

    Shelly Carter

  30. 4 out of 5

    Lee Dobecka

  31. 5 out of 5

    Nancy (The Avid Reader)

  32. 5 out of 5

    Bella

  33. 5 out of 5

    MLB (nothing to do with baseball)

  34. 4 out of 5

    Shayna

  35. 5 out of 5

    TheMistressofBooks

  36. 5 out of 5

    Sander

  37. 5 out of 5

    Emily

  38. 4 out of 5

    Kelly Moses

  39. 4 out of 5

    Joe

  40. 4 out of 5

    Cerrin

  41. 4 out of 5

    Sophie Gabrielle

  42. 4 out of 5

    Bonnie J. de Vos

  43. 5 out of 5

    Elena

  44. 5 out of 5

    Megan Weiss

  45. 4 out of 5

    Nicca

  46. 5 out of 5

    Amy Garrison

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