A fascinating tale told by the slightly fever-addled brain of our narrator. One of those gritty realistic apocalypse tales with a lot of survival details, but not quite as dark as The Road. It was suspenseful and excellently written.
How the character of Bangly was developed and revealed throughout the story. He was such an unlikeable character at first I was almost rooting for him to die, but that changes through the book. Also he is just your typical gun nut waiting for the apocalypse to really shine, so that was interesting to see played out.
This is not a PG-13 book. Definitely rated R or worse due to sexual content more than violence, so not good for kids. (Which is a shame)
A pilot's bird's-eye view affords him a unique perspective on the life of the land below, and Heller's novel, with a pilot at the center of it, provides readers with a unique view of the post-apocalyptic story. I was touched by Hig's (the main character, and a pilot) stubborn refusal to give up hope and decency in the face of the aftermath of the end of the world.
I appreciated that the story was in no particular hurry. We get the chance to know Hig, his dog, their past, hurts, triumnphs and ambitions. When the action starts, I was invested in Hig's success, and this is where the novel soars.
Loses a star due to the relatively thinly drawn secondary character--apparently all surviving men are stoic, western-style, military trained survivalists with a grudging sense of humor and a hidden soft-side (yes, I'm commenting on the hard to believe similarities between Bangley and Pops.) Also, the luck of the heroes strained credulity at times, in a post-apocalyptic wasteland, we would expect risky decisions to have at least some consequences.
But these flaws feel more like nit-picking, and are completely forgivable. Heller's prose (and occasional rhapsodic poetic passages on the beauty of the outdoors) soars with Hig and his iconic four-seater plane.
This book is a great character driven drama set in a post apocalyptic world that is utterly believable. The author wrote this as if it were poetry, and poetry plays large in the pace of the book and the ultimate outcome of the story. Lots and lots of people have complained that this book is really hard to read as it takes great liberties with punctuation. Mark Deakins does an outstanding job reading it and you get to enjoy all the great things this book has to offer without the hassle of trying to figure out the prose.
Higg is my favorite character, he seems real. I feel like I understand him, and he grows as a character while driving the story forward.
** Spoiler alert ** there is a very sad moment when Higg's dog dies. It is the moment when the story changes, when Higg is driven to find meaning and search for hope in a hopeless world.
living life and happy about it
It would depend on the friend. But I think most people would enjoy this book. The writer creates a vivid would with an interesting dystopian future where the 1 to 2 % of the population that survives aren't that great. I don't want to spoil the book but it does end with some hope and there is plenty of action.
I liked how he made all the characters very real. His voice conveyed the desolation of the ruined world very well.
Say something about yourself!
While there is violence, there is a lot more isolation. The set up was believable. I related to the tension between needing to be safe and the need to know if there are others out there like the protagonist. l enjoyed the book and recommend it.
This was an interesting story. I purchased it because of the reviews, however, it wasn't a great story. I enjoyed the book, taking us on a journey through the world after most of the population has died. The author made all encounters with other humans, violent, which I don't think would actually happen in such a time. Each person was only in survival mode, killing anyone that ventured near. I would have liked to see more interactions with survivors instead of just killing. I know that there would be factions of survivalists, but except for the main characters and the Mennonites, everyone was out to kill each other.
I enjoyed the relationship with the two main characters, that made things interesting, to have such different men, but who really had a friendship. I think the entire part of the story at the Grand Junction airport was a little weird, didn't seem to fit well. The writing was well done, narrator was excellent, but I just didn't like the story as much as I thought based on previous reviews.
I'm sure that there will be a second book, as even though the ending was good, there were a couple of possible stories waiting to evolve.
A beautifully-written book, very well read. I love the balance of interior monologue (like poetry - every word counts) with occasional bursts of action. So much to think about -- love, loss, friendship, how would I act if the world as I knew it ended? When are we truly alive and when just putting one foot in front of the other? I look forward to this author's next book.
Well worth listening.
great story told in first person that had several edge of the seat moments. the reading and narration was perfect.
Mark became the characters. He gave life to Hig and the rest.