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The Walls of Orion

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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 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.


First published April 13, 2021

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About the author

T.D. Fox

3 books35 followers
Coming April 2021: The Walls of Orion

A world-romper from the Pacific Northwest who quite enjoys the label “crazy,” T.D. Fox supplements a hyperactive imagination with real life shenanigans to add pizzazz to her storytelling endeavors.
Armed with a bachelor’s degree in Intercultural Studies, her favorite stories to write usually involve a clash of worldviews, an unflinching reevaluation of one’s own internal compass, and an embrace of the compelling unease that arises when vastly different worlds collide.
When not recklessly exploring inner-city alleyways during midnight thunderstorms in the States, she can be found exploring rainforests without enough bug spray somewhere along the equator.

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5 stars
59 (63%)
4 stars
18 (19%)
3 stars
14 (15%)
2 stars
2 (2%)
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 54 reviews
Profile Image for T.D. Fox.
Author 3 books35 followers
February 26, 2021
Because why can't I rate my own book? I loved it and had a lot of fun writing it :)
Profile Image for Claire.
Author 27 books235 followers
April 15, 2021
Oh. My. Goodness.


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.
Profile Image for Jennifer.
68 reviews8 followers
July 12, 2022
I randomly requested this one from Netgalley, craving some good sci-fi after finishing Illuminae earlier this year. When my request was granted, I happily dove in, expecting a good story but having no clue I was in for a GREAT one. Gritty, unpredictable, and so much fun, this book smoothly sailed to a five star rating.

This book has cured my readers block and made me desperate for more!!! From the start, the main character, Courtney, was absolutely delightful in how very average she was. I loved how she wasn't the bold MC, nor the shy one, she's just a perfectly average perfectly normal person, which was so very relatable! She is so typical that it was refreshing to read about. So many authors try to get their main character to be unique and special that it feels overdone, larger-than-life. Courtney was very likeable without having to be anything other than herself, and I was drawn in instantly.

In fact, over the course of this wild ride, I loved all of the main characters! I'll avoid names for the sake of spoilers, but the main cast of this book (and duology) are all likeable and relatable, which is so important. It sucks to get thrown off by an annoying cast even if you adore the MC!

The atmosphere and slow buildup of the tension, setting, and worldbuilding were compelling, yet not so slow I was bored. The many scenes drinking hot chocolate, the changing weather, and the developing relationships between the characters all made for a vivid, movie-esque feeling. And the character dialogue??? It flowed so naturally that I think it must be transcribed from somewhere. Maybe this is a true story and I just didn't know? :0

There were so many fun cliches made new in this story. So many twists and nicely executed tropes. Sci-fi is inherently tropey, if you ask me, and I loved every minute of it in this book lol. Some things I guessed, but others I didn't at all. That's how it should be!

My critiques are limited and isolated, and I'm mostly just left feeling like I need book two. This is the sort of book you can absolutely reread, which I'll likely do once I buy it. Oh yes, this one is a MUST for my own personal library, it's that good.

My final words on this book:
1. I humbly request more fight scenes in book two. I felt teased by the amount of tension in this book and long for more breaks in it. Let the dam fall!
2. Jasper is King and deserves love and respect. He deserves protection.
Profile Image for Dennis K. Crosby.
Author 11 books103 followers
May 14, 2021
T.D. Fox has penned a wonderful debut novel. I found the story compelling, gritty, and witty in all the right spots. The Walls of Orion was the perfect combination of suspense, twists, and self-discovery. Looking forward to more from this author!
1 review1 follower
February 25, 2021
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!!
1 review
February 25, 2021
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!
Profile Image for Sue Wallace .
5,886 reviews61 followers
May 20, 2021
The walls of orion by T.D. Fox.
Wow what a debut. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Couldn't put it down. Great story and characters. Would definitely recommend. 5*.
1 review
February 23, 2021
Loved this book!! An exciting, suspenseful story. A definite must read!
Profile Image for Katie Feavel.
Author 4 books35 followers
June 22, 2021
Courtney is the anti-heroine you just can’t help but root for in this intriguing, and highly relevant, dystopian novel. Definitely looking forward to the second installment and highly recommend!
Profile Image for Paula Josina.
460 reviews22 followers
July 8, 2021
Of course, is this only my personal opinion on the book and just because I give this rating to the book doesn’t mean, that everyone will have that opinion. Thanks to the publisher for providing me an ARC. This is an honest review and the fact that this was an ARC does not change it.

It´s been a hot minute since I read a dystopian novel but this book was just right!
To be honest, I had some problems getting into the story first because I did not understand the whole city and quarantine situation but after like 5 chapters I understood more.
This book gave me the same vibes as Vicious by V.E. Schwab, even though both books are totally different.
I loved the character development of the main protagonist and I can’t wait for book two. This book really took me by surprise.
Really interesting plot, morally grey characters and character depth – what do I want more? I didn’t even miss the smut that I almost need in every book, but maybe there will be a few mild spicey scenes in book two. The book doesn’t have a hard focus on romance, in my opinion, and I loved that because most dystopian novels with a female lead that I have read, are all about which guy she will choose in the end . So this was a super nice new dystopian novel.

This book really took me by surprise!

I give 5 from 5 Stars

For more reviews and bookish content: check out my blog: ( https://paulajosina.wordpress.com/ ) or my bookstagram (@bloggerinthejogger)
Profile Image for Samantha Turley.
567 reviews14 followers
June 23, 2021
This was a Thrilling Young Adult Sci-Fi Fantasy Adventure.
It is a riveting tale that was so action packed and full of heart stopping moments.
With a well-conceived plot, a fast pace, and highly descriptive writing this is the perfect book to delve into. Realistic characters round out the action. Recommended.
Profile Image for Marta Cox.
2,567 reviews191 followers
May 6, 2021
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
Profile Image for Carol Peace.
594 reviews
April 3, 2021
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!
Profile Image for R.K. Emery.
928 reviews32 followers
April 30, 2021
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
Profile Image for Samantha.
5 reviews1 follower
April 3, 2021
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!
Profile Image for Lori Peterson.
846 reviews12 followers
June 19, 2021
Received as a review copy from NetGalley, this is an honest review. Orion City may be protected by an impenetrable wall but that doesn't stop its shadowy secrets from wrecking the lives of its residents. From the moment W... a very eclectic customer, wanders into the coffee shop that Courtney works; their lives become interwoven in such a haunting fashion that once all of Orion City's secrets are laid bare... both W and Courtney will face a new future that's more complicated than their current one. Highly recommended.
Author 2 books3 followers
April 15, 2021
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.
Profile Image for Ronald Johnson.
48 reviews31 followers
August 2, 2021
Absolutely love it. I'm a little cautious of pandemic fiction, for some reason, but Fox started writing before covid was a thing. The 'pandemic' they are experiencing is, let's say, unique. Favorite characters: Courtney, W. I like the moral complexities that arise in the progression of the story. Very compelling read.
Profile Image for DOROTHY SILLS.
376 reviews
May 4, 2021
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.
Profile Image for Megan Beverly.
19 reviews
May 24, 2021
It is very important to me to write this review without spoilers. As someone who has read tons of dystopian YA novels I can assure you, this is a story you have not heard before and you want it to surprise you.

I loved this book. I loved that the the author’s cross cultural training was so heavily integrated in her writing. This might be a YA novel, but there is so much depth here.

I can’t wait for book 2!!!
Profile Image for C. Gonzales.
816 reviews28 followers
June 15, 2021
I very much enjoyed this book.

The storyline was very entertaining and inventive.

Very clever use of imagery throughout and all of it topped off with a very satisfactory ending.

Overall, it was just very fun and I must say the cover art is awesome.
1 review
April 14, 2021
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!!
1 review
February 28, 2021
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!!
Profile Image for Shelly.
136 reviews
March 31, 2021
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~~
Profile Image for Elouise.
107 reviews
May 16, 2021
4.5 stars

I got almost exactly what I wanted from this book, and that makes me happy.

Courtney lives in a city that has been under quarantine for 10 years. After dropping out of medical school Courtney thinks she is resigned to her life as a barista until a mysterious stranger drops a switchblade in her tip jar, and her world slowly spins upside down.

This book was awesome. The worldbuilding was excellent, the pacing was almost perfect, and the characters were decent. But what I liked the most was how T. D. Fox explored morals. The world is never black and white, but books often portray it that way. And sometimes that’s why we read books, because we need a break from our complicated world and can escape through reading. But when an author decides to explore the very complicated grey area in between right and wrong and does it very, very well, I am completely on board. Not to mention T. D. Fox decided to tackle this in her debut, which is practically unheard of. There is a depth to The Walls of Orion that I appreciated. And FYI the official synopsis is terrible. It makes it sound like some dark underground lusty illegal romance, which it is completely not. So don’t read the official synopsis, just read the book.

Now I know what you’re thinking: why not give it five stars? Because I didn’t care about the characters as much as I wanted to. Don’t get me wrong, the writing is very good, but I never felt like I actually got to know Courtney. I wanted to be her invisible best friend; to know what makes her tick, what she’s thinking, why she does what she does. I wanted to see inside her head, and I didn’t. I felt more like I was sitting on her shoulder; I could see what she did and hear what she said, but I didn’t know her the way that I wanted to, so I didn’t care about her as much as I wanted to. I know that this sounds very demanding for a debut novel, but it’s something too important for me to ignore. I hope and expect that as T. D. Fox continues to write she’ll get better at this, and I’m excited to see where she takes the next book in the series.

Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Mature content: about 10 uses each of d*mn and sh*t. A decent amount of violence, including a man getting shot in the head, but not descriptive.

Recommended age: 13+
Profile Image for Jasmine.
957 reviews82 followers
April 27, 2021
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!
Profile Image for thegirlonfire.
192 reviews18 followers
October 28, 2021
i requested this off netgalley, both the cover and description had me curious.
i liked it it was kinda slow at times tho, and i thought about dnf the book bc i wasnt that interested in what was happenin and it wasnt grabbing my attention but at same time i was curious to know what was going to happened and i also wanted asnwers, the characters arent bad or anoying i actually like W hes very mysterious and interesting to read about. i like courtney and her friend dina too and their friendship. jasper i like him but not as courtneys bf. courtneys relationship with her dad while i do understand it i also wanted her to give him a chance. the book is mostly told with courtneys point of view. sometimes we get point of view of jasper and the doctor. i think we also get one or 2 times W point of view. i liked the idea of the book, the virus and the craziness that makes people change into animals usually. also like that some people change to different things like the giant. i might read the sequel bc i am curious to know how this is gonna end and if they are able to stop whats happening and save the city and people. and to see courtney workin with her friend and where they stand and what they will do etc. there isnt romance in this book, or should i say there is but kinda hidden and not in your face. we also got some asnwers concerning some characters and what happens to changers. overall its a good easy and fast pace read with likeable and mysterious characters. but i must be in a reading slump that it was taking me longer to read it and i wasnt enjoying it as much as i shouldve!
Profile Image for Marcella.
352 reviews11 followers
June 6, 2021
I was conflicted before picking this book up, because this kind of dystopian-scifi-isolated town is not my usual read, but I'm so glad I picked it up! This book took away my hours of sleep but it was worth it lol.

Where should I start? Courtney's simple, mundane life turned upside down when she got entangled with a mysterious man called "W" (who seems to have a very, very sweet tooth). The gritty street of Orion is full of dangers and mysteries. As events unfurled around her, Courtney found herself in the very middle of a big scene going on in the dark isolated Orion.

I like this book more than I think I would. I enjoyed the investigation, the characters, the plot, and everything in it. I can almost feel the tension, pulsed beneath the very walls of Orion. Waiting for a right trigger...
Anywayyyy can't wait to read more of Courtney and W in book 2!!!

<< Review copy received via Netgalley in exchange for honest review >>
Displaying 1 - 30 of 54 reviews

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