Friday, January 27, 2012

Ashfall (YA)

Ashfall. Mike Mullin. 2011. Tanglewood. 476 pages. 

I was home alone on that Friday evening. Those who survived know exactly which Friday I mean. Everyone remembers where they were and what they were doing, in the same way my parents remembered 9/11, but more so. Together we lost the old world, slipping from that cocoon of mechanized comfort into the hellish land we inhabit now. The pre-Friday world of school, cell phones, and refrigerators dissolved into this post-Friday world of ash, darkness, and hunger. 

Just in case Susan Beth Pfeffer's moon trilogy was NOT bleak enough for you, may I recommend Mike Mullin's Ashfall?!

Ashfall is a YA novel--a post-apocalyptic science fiction novel--that is incredibly intense. The America Mullin imagines after a super-volcano erupts in Yellowstone is....not quite for everyone. But. For those that can handle it, those who like things ugly and gritty and very life-and-death, Ashfall is quite the read!!!

The hero of Ashfall is a young guy named Alex. His family is out of town for the weekend. Alex had been invited, of course, but he chose to not go with his family to visit his aunt and uncle in Illinois. The event happens suddenly...and it does change everything. But as intense as it was for Alex in the first 48 hours, it doesn't even begin to come close to what the future holds for him...as he decides to travel to Illinois on his own--on foot--to try to find his family.

Ashfall highlights the best and worst in humanity. There are opportunities for great acts of mercy and kindness--as people share what little they have, as people come together and work to survive. But there are hundreds of opportunities for evil as well. Alex encounters both in his journey. For Alex, the best thing to come out of this catastrophe is meeting Darla. But you have to look hard and search deep to find the hope in this novel.

Read Ashfall
  • If you're a fan of post-apocalyptic science fiction
  • If you don't mind a LOT of blood--both human and animal. If you don't mind graphic depictions of violence, of slaughter, of rape. This one goes to very DARK places
  • If you enjoy gritty novels where every day presents a new challenge to survive
  • If you're looking for a post-apocalyptic read WITHOUT zombies

© 2012 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

1 comments:

Jennifer | Book Den 8:06 AM  

I really loved Ashfall. Too many post-apocalyptic books skip over the basic survival stuff that Ashfall doesn't shy away from.

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Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
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