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Ashfall (Ashfall #1)

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3.96  ·  Rating Details  ·  17,223 Ratings  ·  2,419 Reviews
Under the bubbling hot springs and geysers of Yellowstone National Park is a supervolcano. Most people don't know it's there. The caldera is so large that it can only be seen from a plane or satellite. It just could be overdue for an eruption, which would change the landscape and climate of our planet.

For Alex, being left alone for the weekend means having the freedom to p
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Hardcover, 476 pages
Published October 11th 2011 by Tanglewood Press (first published September 27th 2011)
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Popular Answered Questions

Tristan Rissling Honestly, this is an all-around book. I myself read it and found it a great read, and so did my grandmother and my step-father.
Hannah Sue Yes there is but not until about halfway through.
The Hunger Games by Suzanne CollinsCatching Fire by Suzanne CollinsDivergent by Veronica RothMockingjay by Suzanne CollinsThe Maze Runner by James Dashner
YA Dystopia Novels
96th out of 1,044 books — 9,853 voters
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins1984 by George OrwellThe Giver by Lois LowryDivergent by Veronica RothBrave New World by Aldous Huxley
Best Dystopian and Post-Apocalyptic Fiction
129th out of 2,484 books — 20,280 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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karen
all those people who are afraid that the legalization of gay marriage will lead to people wanting to marry their pets have every reason to be afraid.

as soon as it becomes legal to marry a book, i am going to marry this one. and i assume at some point i will cheat on this book and divorce it and marry another book, but for a little while, we will have a storybook relationship and a joint checking account.

and it will be wonderful.

so - okay - for those of you who have not had the opportunity to rea
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Elle

My mates over at Tanglewood Press have asked me not to review this book until a month prior to its release.

So. Instead, I give you:


Elle's Top Ten List of Things Learnt From Reading Ashfall


1. Mike Mullin is a genius

2. Bald chicks are hot

3. Bunnies are delicious

4. Toilet water is also delicious

5. I should really get around to planting that corn field...

6. Mike Mullin is who I will befriend during the next apocalypse

7. Darla: a name no longer reserved for 1930's boobalicious southern damsels

8. Des
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Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
Alex starts off this book as a somewhat spoiled teenage boy. He refuses to go with his family on a trip to his uncle's farm. He wants to stay at home and play World of Warcraft and just flipping sulk.
He doesn't have much sulking time though because something hits his house and crushes in the roof and sets the house on fire. That can get a teenager off his ass. Well, sometimes.

We learn that the super volcano at Yellowstone has exploded. Don't go and Google that shit like I did. It will scare the
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Giselle
Oct 10, 2011 Giselle rated it it was amazing
The first night after I started reading this book, I dreamt about being stuck in a house and hiding from some people while trying to survive/escape. All night. THAT, is a sign of a good book!

This story is told in Alex's point of view. A huge volcano has erupted and they're now seeing and living the after effects. Which means a LOT of ash falling, incredible climate changes, and desperate food situations. I love that the book started right before the eruption. We got to live through it with Alex
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Maja (The Nocturnal Library)
For the first time ever, I felt ashamed of my species. The volcano had taken our homes, our food, our automobiles, and our airplanes, but it hadn’t taken our humanity. No, we’d given that up on our own.

Being a teenager in a world covered with ashes is not easy at all. Alex discovered that after the eruption of a volcano in Yellowstone National Park. His parents and his little sister had left town just before the earth started to shake and Alex was left all alone in a burning house with no one
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Jim
Jul 01, 2012 Jim rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Those who can handle a grim, realistic survival story
Recommended to Jim by: karen

June 27, 2012

SUPERVOLCANO!!!

I strongly recommend a visit to karen's fabulous review, which (along with her encouragement) got me interested in this gripping and realistic tale.

AND! A SPECIAL GUEST APPEARANCE BY karen IS FEATURED IN THIS JOINT REVIEW!! YAY!!

So here is what we are talking about. We will start with some science.

Pic #1: Ashfall zones from known eruptions of the Yellowstone Supervolcano:



'Age=' : millions of years ago for the specific eruption.

How likely is an eruption during our
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Reynje
4.5 stars

Well, colour me surprised: I kind of love this book.

Let me clarify that statement. I didn’t expect to dislike it. I wouldn’t have gone to the effort of procuring it (Ashfall is not available in Australia) if I didn’t have a desire to read it. But my physical TBR pile is literally (view spoiler) big enough to do me an injury (albeit a minor one) if it fell on me, and somehow Ashfall repeatedly ended up on the bottom of that
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Steph Sinclair

Actual rating: 3.5 stars

I was really, really excited to read Ashfall. I've been devouring dystopian novels left and right recently. I'm always itching for my next fix. Seriously, I think I have a problem at this rate, I might just have to check myself into some sort of program. Ashfall is a bit different from the current slew of dystopian novels. For one thing, it is written from a male PoV. These seem to be in slow supply these days, sadly.

Ashfall tells the story of 15 year-old Alex traveling f
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Kat Kennedy
Nov 23, 2011 Kat Kennedy rated it liked it
*This ARC was provided to me by the publishers. No money or gifts were exchanged for this review.

I seem to be one of the very few that found this book a little on the average side. It really probably wasn’t the book’s fault. In fact, if you’re looking for some good reviews of this book, try out Phoebe North’s Review.

There are several different reasons why people enjoy apocalypse stories. Some people enjoy watching the break down of society and making commentary on that. Some people enjoy the st
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Greg
Jun 26, 2011 Greg rated it really liked it
I remember a high school history teacher telling us that if there were ever a nuclear attack he recommended getting in a car and driving as fast as possible towards New York City, most likely it would be a target and you'd have a better chance of getting instantly killed the closer you were to 'ground zero' (this was when ground zero meant the spot where nuclear warheads would strike, and at a time when we feared IBM's flying over Canada as a doomsday scenario, one that you figure gives you time ...more
Sh3lly ✨ Bring on the Weird ✨
So imagine the super-volcano at Yellowstone National Park erupted and caused the grid to fall, no more electricity, no more travel by car or plane, food is scarce, ash fall causes roofs to fall in and buildings to cave, people start looting and acting like maniacal animals... that is the premise of this book. It's not exactly dystopian, but more worst-case disaster scenario.

I thought the book started really strong, but fizzled in the middle, then picked up in the last 30% or so. However, it end
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Cara
Jun 29, 2014 Cara rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: People who love survival books
Recommended to Cara by: Laura
When I looked at this title I kept thinking of that childhood chant, "...ashes, ashes we all fall down!" Well what you know that may not be so far from the truth.

Alex is your normal teenage guy living in the suburbs in Iowa. He fights with his mom, and on his free time plays games and practices taekwondo. From what you can tell he doesn't particularly seem like a special teenager. He's kind of bratty and has a good life. Well Alex's parents and sister decide to visit family, and he fights to sta
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Ashley *Hufflepuff Kitten*
SUCH a fantastic book. Well written, well researched, detailed but fast-paced, frightening and exciting. There were several times reading this where I was literally terrified of what was happening or what would happen next for Alex. I wasn't expecting much from Darla (I'm not a fan of the name, dunno why), but I warmed up to her quickly and they play off each other so well. The entire trip from Iowa to Illinois was never boring, and Mr Mullin was able to mix in plenty of humor so the story never ...more
oliviasbooks
”Everything would be better tomorrow, I thought: a new day, a new dawn. It would have to be better than this. I was wrong. There was no new dawn the next day.”

Cedar Falls, Iowa. Almost 16-years-old Alex has just experienced a major break-through on his way to adulthood: His parents stopped arguing with him and have taken off to uncle Paul's goat farm in Illinois with only his sister Rebecca in tow. Alex luxuriates in his freedom of choice between doing his homework and collecting gold-nuggets i
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Carol (StarAngel's Reviews) Allen
**4 ~Can they catch a break~ Stars**

Wow...I normally stay away from YA books but this one was good...it was written so well, that at times I forgot that these were just kids trying to stay alive.

Yes, there were times that I felt the book slowed down and others where I found it so unbelievable that these kids couldn't catch a break, but it worked in the long run.

Definitely a different twist to the post apocalyptic world and believable consequences that could happen at any time.

I absolutely LOVED
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Chelsea ❤Peril Please❤ (of BADGER and Snake)
Christmas present from Jen (Nevada Jen)


*4.5 Stars*


For the first time ever, I felt ashamed of my species. The volcano had taken our homes, our food, our automobiles, and our airplanes, but it hadn't taken our humanity. No, we'd given that up on our own.

Oh my gosh, guys...this book was SO good!!! I think I'm only shocked because, well, I kept putting it off and putting it off and then my wonderful Jen bought this for me for Christmas. Turns out??? I am a total MORON for not reading this before
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Michelle, the Bookshelf Stalker  Queen of the Undead
Sometimes it takes a major natural disaster to make you realize how important family is!


Just ask Alex. He is as happy as can be that he was left alone for a weekend. He didn’t want to go across the country to visit relatives. So, now he is by himself and loving life, right?

Not. See, when you are teen trying to act like an adult, sometimes you need to make adult decisions. Sometimes, those decisions are huge like fleeing for your life because a supervolcano has erupted. Sometimes those decisions
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Tink Magoo is bad at reviews
I'm not entirely sure why I put myself through reading books like this when they cause a sense of panic to flow right through my body and out the end. Honestly I would be completely inadequate; I don't know any survival skills; I couldn't butcher a pencil let alone an animal.

Please excuse me while I run off to take a survival course, learn to run a farm and befriend anyone that would get advance warning of an incoming apocalypse so I can ransack the supermarket/ bookshops/ pharmacies/ diy store
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Ariana
Dec 13, 2014 Ariana rated it really liked it
“For the first time ever, I felt ashamed of my species. The volcano had taken our homes, our food, our automobiles, and our airplanes, but it hadn’t taken our humanity. No, we’d given that up on our own.”



Define Humanity: hu·man·i·ty, noun, plural -ties.
1. all human beings collectively; the human race; humankind.
2. the quality or condition of being human; human nature.
3. the quality of being humane; kindness; benevolence.

Define survival: sur·viv·al, noun
1. the act or fact of surviving, especiall
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Regina
End of the world story? I am THERE regardless if the book is about zombies, nuclear fall out, or mass pandemic. But, if the end of the world story happens to be about a natural disaster – say like a massive volcano eruption – then I am in heaven. For me, this book is the best of everything in one of my favorite genres. It is a young adult book with a male main character, set in a location I know intimately well because I grew up there, and involving a super volcano eruption and its aftermath. So ...more
TL
Oct 06, 2015 TL rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to TL by: Ashley *Hufflepuff Kitten*
Hmmm... On one hand I enjoyed it and it kept my attention and loved the characters. It had a very realistic feel to it. Loved Alex and Darla, their relationship developed naturally over the course of the story, never felt rushed or anything.

The world around them, it was scary and the tension was high... it was well done and I could see it playing out inside my head. I admired Alex and Darla for being so resourceful and not giving up (even though I wanted to smack Alex one time but I may have rea
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Buggy
Opening Line: “I was home alone on that Friday evening. Those who survived know exactly which Friday I mean.”

Well this was super good. I picked up Ashfall and literally didn’t stop reading for about 80 pages. I mean I didn’t even move from where I was standing. The opening chapters are just unputtdownable, with each ending on a note like; “then the explosions started” or “I took off running” and “When she pried the flap of flesh open with her pocketknife, I screamed and passed out” so that you j
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AH
Wow. I may need to sign up for some Taekwondo classes. That was awesome.

There was a time when I used to watch all those Discovery Channel science shows. Shark Week, Storm Chasers, I watched them all. My all-time favorites were the volcano shows. Then I learned about the Yellowstone Super Volcano. The sheer size of this volcano boggles the mind and should it decide to blow, life on earth (especially North America) would undergo some drastic changes.

Ashfall begins on an ordinary Friday afternoon i
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Bonnie
Ashfall was kindly provided to me by Netgalley for Tanglewood.

Expected Publication Date: October 11th 2011

Ashfall was one of the most well written books I’ve read in a long time. I was so enthralled with this book that I read it a little bit at a time because I wanted to relish this book and all that it was about.

Ashfall is the story of Alex, a teenage boy learning to survive on his own after the Yellowstone supervolcano erupts. With the electricity out, the sun hidden behind a cloud of ash, an
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Laura
Sep 13, 2011 Laura rated it really liked it
One of my many book addictions is the “End of the World As We Know It” stories or otherwise known as “Oh-My-Good-Golly-What–Do-We-Do-Now?” books! :) Over the years, these tales have begun to possess similar plots, events, scares, and attitudes. But Mike Mullin’s Ashfall felt like a brand new bag in many ways! It held such inspiration, morality, and hope in the pages. This story felt more like a journey towards a new way of living in a new world rather than the beginning of the end.

After a superv
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Jo
Aug 03, 2011 Jo rated it really liked it
Recommended to Jo by: Maja & Bonnie
I decided to give this 3.5 stars, but rounded up to 4.

“For the first time ever, I felt ashamed of my species. The volcano had taken our homes, our food, our automobiles, and our airplanes, but it hadn’t taken our humanity. No, we’d given that up on our own.”

(I just realised this quote is the same one that Maja chose... but it's a good quote :-D)

Initial Final Page Thoughts.
And then….? What a random place to finish.

High Point.
SUPERVOLCANO. 10/10 for originality, Mr Mullin. Alex. Ash fights. Pancak
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Keertana
May 11, 2012 Keertana rated it it was amazing
Rating: 4.5 Stars

Remember back when dystopian was a new genre and it was supposed to be full of scary, post-apocalyptic stories? Remember how that quickly changed from dystopian to dystopian-romance, a genre dedicated to the love stories of two unlikely people in a society that is most likely (a) keeping the people ignorant (b) controlling the people or (c) infested with zombies/vampires? Well, Mike Mullin takes us back to the original dystopian – the kind that’s scary, believable, and almost a
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D.G.
Sep 05, 2013 D.G. rated it really liked it
**4.5 stars**

I'm not much for survivalist kind of books but I loved this one. It scared the hell out me though - I'm really not ready for a situation like this. Thankfully, it's not bound to happen in my lifetime. :)

This is the story of Alex, a typical teenager who has to grow up fast when he finds himself alone in the midst of the biggest natural disaster of his lifetime. He's separated from his family (by his own choice) and now that he doesn't have them, he finds that he misses them terribly.
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Dichotomy Girl
Halfway through reading this, I felt the need to inform my husband how woefully unprepared we are for the coming apocalypse.

We don't own a shotgun.

I don't know how to slaughter my own meat, or cook over an open fire.

And I am completely ill equipped to deal with the inevitable downfall of society.

Once I accepted my inadequacy and accepted that I would most likely be one of the first casualties, I could sit back and enjoy the story of Alex's battle for survival on his journey to find his parents a
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Thomas
Jun 30, 2014 Thomas rated it really liked it
Here are the three C's of how I would react if a supervolcano exploded near my hometown:
1) Check Twitter, Facebook, and Goodreads for moral support
2) Cry when the internet either A) offers no moral support or B) dies
3) Create a fortress out of books in my bedroom, proceed to lie down and read/weep until my inevitable death

Ashfall felt like a mix of Life As We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer and The Road by Cormac McCarthy. In the first chapter a giant piece of rock destroys fifteen-year-old Alex's
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Mike Mullin’s first job was scraping the gum off the undersides of desks at his high school. From there, things went steadily downhill. He almost got fired by the owner of a bookstore due to his poor taste in earrings. He worked at a place that showed slides of poopy diapers during lunch (it did cut down on the cafeteria budget). The hazing process at the next company included eating live termites ...more
More about Mike Mullin...

Other Books in the Series

Ashfall (3 books)
  • Ashen Winter (Ashfall, #2)
  • Sunrise (Ashfall, #3)

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“A librarian can’t live by books alone, and I wouldn’t eat them if I could. Feel too much like cannibalism.” 121 likes
“For the first time ever, I felt ashamed of my species. The volcano had taken our homes, our food, our automobiles, and our airplanes, but it hadn't taken our humanity. No, we'd given that up on our own.” 115 likes
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