Video: Just City Book Trailer Created by Vio Hartopanu at

Dear Readers,
I'm so happy my young adult novella Just City is finally out. It took me more than 4.5 years to write it and so many people helped me with this process! I can't wait to hear what you think. So many thanks to those who have already left reviews on!! I (ambitiously) hope to raise $5,000 in royalties for my home country, Ukraine. Thank you for making your contribution to this goal.
Just City Buy on Amazon!

Just City is a story of 21-year-old Nathan who dreams about creating a cool start-up with his friend Jack. To get money for the start-up Nathan starts playing a virtual reality game as part of a scientific experiment. The game forces Nathan to discover what it is like to be in the skin of somebody else, for whom the cards have been dealt differently. The depressing experiences of playing the game make Nathan question his belief in meritocracy and pick a fight with Jack. What is just and what do we really deserve? This is only the beginning of Nathan’s search for a new life credo that will have both love and reason at its core.

Book title: Just City

Author: Olga Tymofiyeva

Publisher: KDP

Format: E-book

Pages: 147

ISBN number: 979-8-3507-0178-4

Estimated retail price: $10

Publish Date: Nov 27, 2022

Buy on Amazon:


Book trailer:


The book is also available in paperback format and as an audiobook narrated by the brilliant Douglas Dorda.

Editorial Reviews

"Just City is a fantastic book that will have its readers contemplating life and the choices we all make.
It will make readers understand a little bit better about how the brain works and hopefully stimulate compassion for those who are less fortunate.
Just City is an amazing, engaging book with life lessons that all adults should be reading about."

Star Rating: 5 / 5 (Reviewer considers the book to be something that everyone should read. Reviewer would definitely read it again).
- Kristi Elizabeth, San Francisco Book Review
“…simple but sharply effective…”
- Kirkus Reviews
“Tymofiyeva debuts with a thought-provoking … story that inspires while addressing deeper sociocultural issues of selfishness and implicit bias.
Just City plunges readers into engrossing self-exploration alongside Nathan, who plays the classical lost young man seeking the best version of himself.
The novel culminates in a striking realization for Nathan: “[selfishness] is a value one can choose or not choose for oneself.” Instead, it’s rationality “that helps us find the best approximation to the truth.”
Tymofiyeva depicts Nathan’s growth toward that idea with heart and persuasive power. Despite its philosophical bent, the story is sharply plotted, moving along at a fair pace.
The ending builds to a powerful lesson on free will and human interconnectedness. Young seekers who enjoy contemplative fiction, rich in this is a polished, illuminating read.”
- BookLife by Publishers Weekly
“Adults both young and older will find Just City an exciting and moving read.”
STARRED REVIEW (only about 5% of books get a Starred Review from BlueInk)
- BlueInk Review
"In Just City, readers will be left in awe and inspired as they follow a young man’s philosophical journey through an existential crisis. Just City is a fascinating character study that blends the high-tech world with young adult themes to explore personal identity, social hierarchies, and interpersonal relationships. With deeply emotional moments and highly intellectual conversations, Just City is perfect for readers who are ready to engage and question their own privilege, empathy, and belonging."
- The Book Review Directory
"Just City is a novella that teens, new adults, and adults can all enjoy.
Olga Tymofiyeva tackles many intriguing, powerful social, philosophical, and psychological issues through the eyes and experiences of young Nathan.
Readers who choose Just City and libraries that decide to stock it will find the story replete in situations which can spark many different questions and debates among book clubs and reading groups, from the nature of reality, love, and experience to the intersection between science and belief which is challenged by Nathan's venture into unfamiliar territory.
Just City's compelling exploration is not just suitable for a broad audience of thinkers young and adult, but is very highly recommended as a spark point of debate and higher-level thinking."

- D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review; Editor, Donovan's Literary Services
"Just City by Olga Tymofiyeva is a highly entertaining and engaging young adult novel that takes the readers on an adventure that will make them question their own life motto and life decision.
The pacing and topics addressed in the book are fantastic."

- Chelsea Burdick, YFR Reviewer
“This thought-provoking novel is perfect for young adults and teenagers (questioning) what they can do to improve (the world).”
Star Rating: 5 / 5 and The Gold Award
- Literary Titan
"Just City by Olga Tymofiyeva is a page-turning young adult sci-fi tale that illustrates a possible blur between reality and the virtual world.
Just City is suspenseful and contemplative at the same time. Olga Tymofiyeva writes a story that is sensitive to the intellectual and emotional tides sweeping her characters, and this is reflected in the way they discuss the on-goings in their daily lives, especially their dreams and aspirations. It has a solemn and grandiose theme, which, although explored many times in films and books, Tymofiyeva effectively gives it an angle as a high-tech young adult thriller about the human condition.
Just City is highly recommended, not just for young adults, but for everyone who enjoys high-tech thrillers."

Star Rating: 5 / 5
- Vincent Dublado, Reviewer for Readers' Favorite
“Gripping, moving, and thought-provoking… A page-turner. 
The story seems straightforward initially, but relentless twists unravel a hidden complexity, keeping readers invested. The characters are fully fleshed out, including the secondary ones. Tymofiyeva’s prose is crisp as it places readers alongside Nathan, thriving as a young man surrounded by love, legacy, and promise before his life turns upside down and he begins to question everything he has known. Thoughtful and absorbing, the novel makes for a winner.”
- The Prairies Book Review
“A young man’s life is turned upside down after he starts playing a virtual reality game as part of a scientific experiment in Tymofiyeva’s engrossing debut.
This absorbing story is full of young adult intrigue and human drama. The use of video game culture anchors the story in today’s culture, while themes of identity, young adult angst, family, friendship, mental illness, empathy, understanding expectations, drive, success, and failure are woven nicely into the fast-paced narrative. Well-rounded secondary characters add texture to the story. At the center is Nathan, fully realized and achingly real in his pain and confusion. Urban-fiction readers will enjoy this, but it will also appeal to any YA or adult reader seeking an inspiring read that’s both fast-paced and entertaining.”
- BookView Review
“Just City by Olga Tymofiyeva is a novel about equality and justice in society.
This is a beautiful story because the lessons learned from it can be applied to our daily lives. Olga Tymofiyeva did a great job of creating intriguing and captivating characters. The descriptions of the scenery, both in and out of the game, were beautifully written and easy to visualize. I enjoyed reading this book and hope to read more from Olga, not only because of her beautiful writing but also for her noble and selfless cause.”
Star Rating: 5 / 5
- Luwi Nyakansaila, Reviewer for Readers' Favorite
“Just City by Olga Tymofiyeva is a must-read story for upwardly mobile, achievement-oriented young adults.
In this brilliantly written book, I became engrossed in the author’s riveting approach to leading readers into the problematic search for self. The questions of Just City by Olga Tymofiyeva (as presented by young floundering Nathan) is, indeed: what would constitute a genuinely justice-oriented society, and what would have to constitute our “life principles” to create such a world? These crucial questions are, however, not only for young adults. Just City will profoundly engage readers of any age.”
Star Rating: 5 / 5
- Jon Michael Miller, Reviewer for Readers' Favorite
“How do you choose what's right? What's the difference between facts and values? Is it possible to balance science and holistic beliefs? These are some of the questions posed by author Olga Tymofiyeva in this captivating young adult novella that leaves you with a lot to ponder about long after you've finished reading it.
If you love deep philosophical discourse, you will love Just City.
Overall, a thought-provoking young adult novella.”
Star Rating: 5 / 5
- Pikasho Deka, Reviewer for Readers’ Favorite
"Interpersonal relationships play a key role in Just City.
Nathan constantly questions his actions with a degree of introspection that would impress deep thinkers.
Olga Tymofiyeva puts together an impressive novel with Just City. The character development is thorough, the interaction between the characters is deep and thought-provoking, and the storyline touches on a subject that everyone identifies with. I enjoyed reading this book."
Star Rating: 5 / 5
- Essien Asian, Reviewer for Readers' Favorite
“The author created a unique storyline…
I feel everyone has felt like Nathan has at one point in their life.
The book made me look at my own life and question what I could be doing differently, how I interact with others, and how to expand what I can do for others.
I found myself relating to Nathan’s vulnerability to other people’s influence as well.”
Star Rating: 5 / 5
- Mindy Conahye, Reviewer for OnlineBookClub
“The ride “Just City” takes readers on is an important one… Tymofiyeva does a great job of opening the minds of readers and giving us a story we can fully embrace.
…like “Ready Player One” being revamped into a more thought-provoking and realistic (story).”
Star Rating: 5 / 5
- Jill Rey, Reviewer for Reader Views
“Apart from the compelling plot and the terrific characterization, the writing is infused with realism and humanity and the author puts characters in situations where they must make difficult choices.”
Star Rating: 5 / 5
- Christian Fernandez, Reviewer for The Book Commentary
“Just City is a cleverly written page-turner … and The Political Compass has a role to play!”
- The Political Compass


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