Blue Dawn, by Blaine Pardoe



I've been meaning to write a review of Blaine Pardoe's Blue Dawn for quite some time.  

I give Blue Dawn five out of five stars. It is a fun story, but one must read between the lines, I think, to really enjoy it. 

Why do I say that?

Blue Dawn is about a violent takeover of the United States government by so-called "woke" progressives, i.e., the radical left. It begins with a January 6 like protest at the Capitol building and White House in Washington that culminates with the death of the US president and vice president (whom we later find actually escaped). In their stead, the Speaker of the House of Representatives – a "woke" progressive, naturally – assumes office as President. 

And then the purges begin; all US government agency heads are replaced by "progressives".

"Wokeness" is key here. It is the idea that people can be "cancelled" for voicing antiquated opinions (antiquated as defined by the "woke" left), or misspeaking. If you aren't onboard with using proper pronouns – they/them for transgendered people, for example, if they so desire – then you are 'cancelled'. Cancelled means being fired from your job and otherwise blacklisted from future employment.

But Blue Dawn goes even further. Remember those Black Lives Matter protests that led to the removal of statues honoring Confederate generals and slaveowners? That equates to the erasure of history, according to Blaine – or, rather, to the characters in Blue Dawn. Even the very history of the United States is depicted as irredeemably racist by the radical left in Blue Dawn. There are, of course, constituencies on the left where this is so. But they aren't the mainstream no matter how extreme the rhetoric on the right suggests.

In Blue Dawn, these far-left radicals ascend to the highest offices of the US government in a mini-revolution, ushering in a leftist Utopian version of America. Which means a reimagining of America as "Newmerica" replete with a new flag. The Star Spangled Banner is relegated to the ash heap of history, right alongside the Nazi and Confederate flags of the past, and banned as a symbol of racism.

The use of language is strictly enforced in Newmerica. You either repeat the official mantras of the new and enlightened elites, or you will be blacklisted or worse.

'Worse' means being paid a visit by Social Justice Squads who discharge vigilante justice with impunity.

Pretty scary stuff. And great fodder for a novel. I really enjoyed Blue Dawn, despite its twisting of actual reality. Which is where my comment "one must read between the lines, I think, to really enjoy it" comes in.

I don't know Blaine personally. I've never met him. But the albeit limited snippets of Blaine's life that comes through in his public profiles suggest to me that Blaine is one smart cat. Makes me wonder if Blaine really believes what he is writing. Or is he taking true events like the rightwing January 6 assault on the Capitol Building in Washington to prevent the peaceful transfer of power and spinning them into a fictitious leftist revolt to somehow lure true believers on the right into a hall of mirrors and force them to come to some kind of personal epiphany and reckoning.

One can hope.

In the meantime, I very much enjoyed Blue Dawn in that vein and look forward to continuing the series.

Lastly, the title Blue Dawn pays homage to the classic (IMHO) 1980s film Red Dawn that depicts a communist invasion of America.  It also refers to the geographic division in the USA in recent decades between Republican-led "red states", and Democratic-led "blue states".