Matt Richter's Reviews > The Ask and the Answer

The Ask and the Answer by Patrick Ness
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's review
Aug 19, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: science-fiction, young-adult

this second book takes the 'chaos walking' series in an unexpected direction. still the same setting, but the adventure & exploration of the first book are replaced by much heavier fare including manipulation, occupation, moral ambiguity, terrorism, torture, and even genocide, as well as greatly expanding themes introduced in the first book like colonisation and indigenous relations. it's still very character-centric and well written. This time around I found the climax to be the strongest part of the book—which is the opposite of my experience with the first book—but in both cases, it's all still very page-turnery from start to finish. The front and back cover design is really great too and even has more meaning as you read through the book. Intelligent and interesting typography and design throughout the book also plays more of a part than in most books. Young Adult Fiction has certainly come some way since I was a teenager.

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