Friday, February 8, 2013

ARC Review: The End of all Things by Lissa Bryan

From the blurb:

After a terrible virus ravages the planet, Carly Daniels, one of the few survivors, hides in her apartment in Juneau trying to survive the best she can with only occasional forays to gather food. With her is Sam, a wolf puppy she found starving on the streets. He becomes her companion and a reason to continue when giving up sometimes seems like the more attractive option. Still dazed with shock and grief, she hopes for the world to go back to normal soon. She is discovered by Justin, an ex-soldier who is intent on making his way to Florida before the winter sets in. Justin coaxes her out of her hiding place and convinces her to join him on his journey, because a warmer climate will be their best chance against the extremes of Mother Nature.[...]

My rating:

Not only does Lissa Bryan tell a convincing end of the world as we know it story, but also a wonderfully emotional romance.

Meet Carly Daniels, 22, living in Juneau, Alaska, on her own, one of the very few survivors of a pandemic that wiped out most of the world's population. There is no electricity, no food, no police, no order, and nobody to help her make it from day to day. Her parents have succumbed to the disease, and Carly is all alone, with only her little puppy, Sam, for company.

It is Sam and his need for food that prompts Carly to make the trip to the nearby grocery store again, to scavenge for dog food and anything else she might still find. If only it weren't for Biker Dude who's been standing outside of her apartment building for the last few days.

Biker Dude turns out to be Justin, 34, a fellow survivor. He, with a bit of 'tricksy hobbit' attitude, convinces Carly that their best bet for survival is to make the long trip south, through Canada, into the US and eventually to Florida, where the climate is better for farming. Justin is ex-Special Ops, and while he already has quite a few survival skills, Carly learns to stand her own along the way.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

ARC Review: The Shadow Society by Marie Rutkoski

The Shadow Society
From the blurb:

Darcy Jones doesn’t remember anything before the day she was abandoned as a child outside a Chicago firehouse. She has never really belonged anywhere—but she couldn’t have guessed that she comes from an alternate world where the Great Chicago Fire didn’t happen and deadly creatures called Shades terrorize the human population. Memories begin to haunt Darcy when a new boy arrives at her high school, and he makes her feel both desire and desired in a way she hadn’t thought possible. But Conn’s interest in her is confusing. It doesn’t line up with the way he first looked at her. As if she were his enemy. When Conn betrays Darcy, she realizes that she can’t rely on anything—not herself, not the laws of nature, and certainly not him. Darcy decides to infiltrate the Shadow Society and uncover the Shades’ latest terrorist plot. What she finds out will change her world forever . . .

My rating:

I was pleasantly surprised at how well this book is written. The author avoids falling into the well-known tropes that permeate YA.

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