A plague of locusts has destroyed the world's crops leading to devastating food shortages. So many people have died that the very survival of the humaA plague of locusts has destroyed the world's crops leading to devastating food shortages. So many people have died that the very survival of the human race is in doubt. On the eve of the establishment of safety camps for young people, Dani and her little brother Brody, flee their home seeking safety in the Black Hills of South Dakota.
The two can't possibly survive without the help of several other teens. Kit has been Dani's friend for years, while others such as Bentley, Jack and Callie are new friends. Together, they form a cohesive group with many strengths.
I enjoyed reading this story and felt that much of it was quite plausible. Yes, older teens could be sent off on their own to survive, some being more capable than others. Their banding together seemed a natural response to their situation.
The setting of the Black Hills is practically a magical place to me. I know it only from the Beatles song "Rocky Raccoon". It is a vast, under-populated area with lots of hiding places. A great place to hide.
Were the locusts a natural occurrence or a biblical plague. Religion does play a role in this story, though not in a persuasive way, rather as the belief/practise of a segment of the characters. It is yet to be told how much of a role it truly plays in the development of the plot or if it really is just and excuse for men to behave badly.
I look forward to this story continuing in the next book Red River....more
It was the cover that first attracted me to this book and it didn't mislead. This was a story I could hardly put down.
Kaitlyn is having a difficult tiIt was the cover that first attracted me to this book and it didn't mislead. This was a story I could hardly put down.
Kaitlyn is having a difficult time with her second coming of age. The first time she did it as a human girl and this time she is doing it as the first human robot/cyborg. Having signed her donor card to donate her body to science, after she suffers a fatal brain injury in a fall, her body ends up in the labs of Dr. Harrington. From that point forward, she is an experimental subject and no longer has any say over what happens to her body.
Dr. Harrington has no qualms about turning Kaitlyn into the perfect soldier, though Lucas, one of his scientists, has second thoughts about what they have done.
Even with all her enhancements, Kaitlyn is still a girl, but she no longer knows how to be the person she was before the accident. Some of her mistakes were amusing. Others reminded me of ones that a foreigner to Canada or the United States might make such as not knowing the current slang. It also emphasised that text book learning is not enough, real world experience is required.
Did I mention that there is romance. Can't tell you about that, want to keep the suspense.
Even though this level of human/robot hybrid is far off in the future, it does bring to mind the question of whether it should be done. Just because we have the technology, should we be using it.
This is a well written book that kept me reading long after I should have been asleep. Though this book is aimed at a YA audience, it has enough detail to keep an adult reader involved. ...more
Lesley did a great job reading for the audiobook. i followed along in rapt attention for the entire book and repeated a few parts that I particularlyLesley did a great job reading for the audiobook. i followed along in rapt attention for the entire book and repeated a few parts that I particularly enjoyed. She was able to bring the characters to life for me. No problems with me believing that the male characters were male even though they were read by a woman. ...more
I could hardly put this book down, and that's saying a lot since I have previously read it two times. Karigan G'ladheon has faced life threatening chaI could hardly put this book down, and that's saying a lot since I have previously read it two times. Karigan G'ladheon has faced life threatening challenges since she ran away from bullies at her boarding school and I can't help but cheer for her.
The lands of Sacoridia are bounded by magical D'Yer Wall that has stood for a thousand years. It has served to keep the nightmare creatures of Kanmorhan Vane out, but the Gray One has breached the wall. I had hoped that the wall would be more involved in this story, but that comes in future books. The Green Riders are the main theme. They are the legendary couriers of the lands, though their reputation has tarnished over the centuries and their role in the liberation from evil has been forgotten.
This book has many of the features I look for in a good book. A strong female character, a good cast to support her, magic that keeps me guessing and a wonderful setting. The land of Sacoridia is realistic in many ways, yet the possibility of magic adds numerous twists. I had one problem with this created world. The road that Karigan travels from school to the capital city is impossibly long compared to those travelled by he father. Unfortunately there is no map of the lands included in the book, so I have to imagine that the route she took was the 'milk run' that passed through all the out of the way towns.
Karigan does a lot of growing up in this coming of age story. From school girl to respected Green Rider, she faces challenges that might have thwarted vastly more experienced adults. True to form for a teenager, she says she wants travel and adventure and then when she's presented with it, all she wants to go is go home.
I first read this book shortly after it was published in 1998 and I feel that it still reads well for a debut novel. If it were to be published now it would probably fit in the YA category. The story continues in First Rider's Call. ...more
This is the quality zombie inspired novel that I have been waiting for. Many books of the walking dead tell of mindless killers roaming every where wrThis is the quality zombie inspired novel that I have been waiting for. Many books of the walking dead tell of mindless killers roaming every where wrecking havoc. These serve as the backdrop to some other story about the survivors. In this series, they are integral to the entire plot, not their activites, but how they are perceived and how they are treated.
Benny Imura barely remembers life before First Night. That was the night everything changed, when the dead no longer stayed dead. He's been living with his brother in a fenced community and now that he's fifteen, he's required to train for a job. He tries many jobs, but none of them suit. He finally decides to do the last thing he said he'd ever do, to continue in the family business of zombie killer. That means spending days on end with his older brother Tom, who he views as a coward.
As the training progresses, Benny starts to see Tom in a whole new light. He also learns much more about the world he thought he knew.
Through this story, author Jonathan Maberry considers the many ways that the survivors deal with the zombies from outright slaughter, to a compassionate approach that recalls that the zombies were once their family members, friends and neighbours. He also looks at the variety of communities that have sprung up, several of them were not ones that I would have considered at all.
This book is well written and should appeal to it's target YA audience. I am looking forward to reading the further books in the in the series. ...more