Tuesday, June 25, 2013

5 stars: In the After (In the After series, #1) by Demitria Lunetta

"They hear the most silent of footsteps.
They are faster than anything you've ever seen.
And They won't stop chasing you...until you are dead.

Amy is watching TV when it happens, when the world is attacked by Them. These vile creatures are rapidly devouring mankind. Most of the population is overtaken, but Amy manages to escape—and even rescue “Baby,” a toddler left behind in the chaos. Marooned in Amy’s house, the girls do everything they can to survive—and avoid Them at all costs.

After years of hiding, they are miraculously rescued and taken to New Hope, a colony of survivors living in a former government research compound. While at first the colony seems like a dream with plenty of food, safety, and shelter, New Hope slowly reveals that it is far from ideal. And Amy soon realizes that unless things change, she’ll lose Baby—and much more."

Published June 25th 2013 by Harper Teen. I received a digital ARC of this story.

Incredible. Seriously. 

This was one of those stories where while reading it, you can picture everything so well, and you think "this should be a movie or a TV show." And I was even thinking that when I wasn't very far into the book. Then I realized that its TV show counterpart would be The Walking Dead, only that has zombies instead of aliens.

The thing is, I'm not a huge fan of The Walking Dead, so this is way better in my opinion. It was terrifying and filled with suspense, so I could not stop reading. Trust me, there are no issues with pace here.

I'm guessing that the book may have been written in a different order, but then the timelines were weaved together to create a much richer story. You get to see the past and the present and each is consecutive, but interlaced. So you sort of know how things will turn out later, but you don't know how things got to the point they are now. This doubles the suspense since you're seeing two scary stories play out. It was an absolutely brilliant way to write the book.

I've had patrons and others gripe about how there aren't YA books that don't have love stories. This one does not have one (there is a kiss, but that's it). I absolutely love romance in my stories, but I think that if this one had a love story, I might actually be pissed off, like I was with The Madman's Daughter; there is just way too much going on to even worry about boys.

This book was not written hastily. There was so much thought put into every single thing, which made it a very cohesive story with no plot holes. Since it was written in a way that provided a lot of mystery and clues (you don't find out much until the end of the book), it would have been too easy to slip-up along the way and possibly forget to get back to a certain clue or oddity. When things didn't make much sense, I liked how Lunetta actually had the characters know this too, as not to insult the reader's intelligence. This is extremely rare to find in a story, and I can't begin to express how impressed it made me.

OK, there was one tiny thing that made no sense, and since I had an ARC, it's possible it was edited out later. Amy was 13 or 14 when the aliens arrived and her life switched from the Before to the After (before the aliens and after the aliens), yet somehow, she was asked three years later if she had ever taken the SATs (strange question to ask since she's 16 and it's the After) and she replied that she had taken the pre-test. Maybe she did, but I don't know if that's likely. Yes, that is my entire gripe about the whole book, and that's just from two sentences of the 400 page story.

Anyway, this book is truly fantastic and is written incredibly well. 

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