Standing Ground - Alice Rachel

#BlogTour: Standing Ground by Alice Rachel @AliceRachelWrit @XpressoTours #GuestPost #Giveaway

It’s a pleasure to welcome Alice Rachel to the blog today as part of her tour for Standing Ground the second novel in her Under Ground series. It’s a dystopian romance series for young adults and in the guest post today Alice talks about how she has gone about creating a virus for this world. It’s a great read so I hope you enjoy it.

If you would like to catch up with the series you can grab book one here.

If you want to follow the rest of the tour you can check out the stops over at Xpresso Book Tours.


When the authorities strike to regain control over the riots in Eboracum City and use drastic measures as retaliation against the civilians, the citizens are forced to fight back to survive. A virus has spread through the Underground, taking down the refugees one by one, soon contaminating the rebels. If Thia wants to save the ones she loves, she will have to retrieve the cure, quickly. But certain decisions are costly, and not all actions are free of consequences.


Guest Post

Creating a virus in a dystopian world

There IS a virus in Standing Ground! How did you know? *winks*

Mmmm, creating a virus… Well, that was tough because I know nothing about medicine or science.

I decided to choose a virus that already exists (pneumonia) and have scientists modify it a bit to make it more difficult to detect and deadlier.

The other virus in the novel is the West Nile virus, which isn’t common in New York State right now, but in a world where the temperatures have risen and more insects may be present, it could be a possibility.

I had to do research about the virus, how it spreads, what the symptoms are, how deadly it is, and how it can be cured.

These two viruses are mentioned in Standing Ground.

But there is a third disease mentioned in the series, which affects some members of the lower class: dysentery.

It’s a sickness my grandpa talked about a lot because he and many others suffered from it when they were kept in concentration camps. My grandpa said he only survived because he ate charcoal, and a friend of his died because he refused to eat it.

Though there is no charcoal mentioned in my stories, dysentery is present in Terrence’s short story and it’s one of the sicknesses plaguing the lower class.

Going back to pneumonia.

What was interesting to me was linking the characters in a way that is only apparent if one reads all the stories.

In one of my short stories that work preludes to Standing Ground, a character loses his job because he refuses to work on the disease. He realizes the government of New York State is trying to create this monster pneumonia, and he refuses to be a part of that.

Then in Standing Ground, another character related to that same man dies from that same disease.

I like placing little clues and links like this throughout the series.

Obviously, I cannot say who the characters are. The readers will just have to see for themselves.

Finally, another aspect of the series that has to do with diseases is how skilled one of my characters (Willow) is with plants and flowers. She would probably know how to heal a wound with the right herbs or what to eat to overcome some sickness. That’s actually mentioned in Standing Ground where her skills would be needed.

I hope that covered the topic. Thank you so much for inviting me on your blog.

About Alice Rachel

Alice Rachel is the author of the YA Forbidden Romance/ Dystopian Romance Series “Under Ground.”

Her time is divided between teaching French, writing, reading, drawing, and spending time with her hubby and guinea pigs.

Alice loves talking to readers, so send her a message…



Giveaway ButtonClick on the image to head to rafflecopter to enter the tour-wide international giveaway to win:

  • A Paperback copy of “Under Ground,” “Losing Ground,” and “Standing Ground” with the new covers. (Please, note that SG will get its new cover later in April)
  • $20 Amazon gift card

Good Luck!

Book & Buy Links

TitleStanding Ground
SeriesUnder Ground #2
Author: Alice Rachel
Genre: Dystopia | Romance | Young Adult
Publisher: N/A
Publication Date: 27 October 2016
Review Format: N/A
Other Formats: eBook | Paperback
Pages: 558
BuyAmazon UK | Amazon US | Book Depository

Published by


I'm BrizzleLass, I have Bipolar and have been dealing with mental illness in one form or another since childhood, I was first diagnosed with depression at nine. It's not easy speaking out about my experiences, some of them are extremely painful, but if I can help even one person then I have succeeded in sharing my story. This is where I talk about my mental health among other things that interest me. I enjoy walking, PlayStation, reading, heavy metal, and spending time with my Niece.

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