Author: Ilsa J. Bick
Publisher: Egmont USA
Length: 465 pages
A fatal electromagnetic pulse flashes across the sky and instantly, the world goes insane. Electric appliances no longer work, billions are killed instantly, and the majority of teenagers become feral. Alex only knows she was painfully knocked to the ground, and her sense of smell, long-lost because of the giant brain tumor in her head, has suddenly returned, stronger than ever. To survive, she teams up with eight-year old Ellie and ex-soldier Tom. But their improvised family is constantly in danger of running out of food and supplies and of being attacked not only by zombie-like teens, but by others like themselves who were spared.
I couldn’t put this book down. I read it when I was supposed to be doing anything but reading; I read it through TV shows; I read it through a blooming migraine. A gripping tale indeed!
It’s a super violent (yes, Hunger Games violent) post-apocalyptic world, and nothing ever goes right. I think Ilsa J. Bick must be a glass half-empty kind of girl, because the disaster brought out the worst in a lot of people. But I exaggerate here- really Ms. Bick shows us that humans are complicated, and will do desperate things when pushed.
Alex, Ellie and Tom are no exception. While they’re good people, they’re pushed to do some pretty awful things to survive. It’s impossible not to like our main characters though (eventual like in Ellie’s case). Our narrator Alex had pretty much gave up the will to live before the pulse, but now that fighting for life is the only thing left, she suddenly finds it in herself to fight. Makes you wonder if you would have it in you to fight…
Overall, a must-read if you’re into dystopia, apocalypses, camping, survival, families, and maybe a little melodrama. The world is ending after all.