3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Ashes (The First Book in the Ashes Trilogy) (Paperback)
Ashes was a book that provided plenty of the darkness and grit that its title suggested. When an EMP causes all electronics to faulter and also interferes with the teeny tiny electrical pulses in the brains of humans, a whole heap of...stuff...hits the fan! Only the very young and very old survive intact, save for a few exceptions such as Alex, the protagonist. Others survive, but as maddened inhumane creatures, similar to the "sickos" in Charlie Higson's "The Enemy" series, or the raging "infected" in "28 Days Later".
The idea of the masses succumbing to a force that leaves them insane and blood thirsty is not new. The dystopian premise of technology falling down around our ears is not new either. So what about this book made me love it as much as I did? It was a combination of things really. I loved Alex as the protagonist. She goes to the mountains to bury her past and to admit that, due to a brain tumor, she has no future. Instead it is her tumor and the treatments she's had for it that saves her from the EMP and allows her to begin her story. These are things you find out in the first pages so I don't think I'm spoiling anything for you.
I loved the was Bick toyed with my expectations of the lovey dovey part of the story. I was expecting that to be straight forward and predictable, but she caught me off-guard! I could go into a ramble about this aspect of the story, but then I would be spoiling things! I'll simply say that I expect the sequel to leave me reeling.
Mostly, I loved the crumbling world Alex found herself in after the EMP. It reminded me of Prentisstown in the Patrick Ness novels. Haunting, patriarchal and oh-so-very insane! I'm thoroughly looking forward to the sequel to this (already on my Goodreads Wishlist) and finding out how Bick tortures her protagonist further.
This is a must-read for fans of dystopia.