If you are looking for a silly, cute book with engaging characters and an adorable narrator to "cleanse the palate" between more serious reads, this is it! Really enjoyed it.
I should have listened to the bad reviews, Oh, why didn't I listen!?
Narrator--pretty awful. Female characters especially bad, almost funny. Like when a teenage boy dresses up as a girl and does "that voice".
Characters--flat. Very generic. From a Lifetime movie.
Premise--interesting. That is why I bought it. But it is so poorly researched on the scientific end that his goal (to make me see the light) actually backfired because of how unfairly matched the arguments were. I am all for keeping an open mind and having it changed but not by a zealot with nothing more than his own faith. And NOT during what was supposed to be a novel. This was a Christain infomercial.
Writing--oh, Jesus. It is bad.
Story--here is where is gets interesting. The book starts off okay with an interesting event--tons of people disappearing--but quickly devolves. In the end, it is a very thinly veiled attempt at Christian propaganda where the author must have thought he was writing to adults with the intellectual capacity of children. Some of the writing is like a wizened prophet speaking to idiot sinners (that is you and me, by the way). It is almost insulting but I know he believes in his message and was probably just not given the gift of the written word so that is fine. I know he meant no intentional offense. That being said, there are so many points where I started laughing because of how obvious it was that he was trying to make us "see the light". Once it is clear what he is up to, the rest of the story is about the characters' journey at coming around to the truth of Jesus and the story and side plot (which was the only kind of interesting thing going on) become secondary.
If you are already a True Believer, go on and get this book. It will make you feel all fuzzy and warm that you will be saved, too. If you are not, this book was just plain laughably bad.
I like the premise a lot but nobody is happy in this book--nobody. And nobody has a true crazy passion. A lot have curiosity or numbed resistance but even when people succeed in this novel, no joy is felt--and it all translates to the reader so I just did not enjoy this much. I know that sounds silly but it makes it very hard to care about the characters and their actions when even they do not seem to care too much and the book falls apart from there.
The characters could have been developed a lot better and in some cases seem like they were picked out of a stereotype vault.
The writing is OK and has moments of beauty but needs a lot of work. Pace is too slow at times it needs to be fast and then too fast when it needsto be slow and misses opportunities to develop plot and characters more.
With the whole post-nuclear thing, the author did do a great job of painting the world and its people but forgot to paint in any potential joy or hope so eventually you just want to get the hell out of there and leave those depressed mutants behind.
I like books with interwoven characters and stories a lot (think: Ken Follett) so I tried this one and liked it very much. I am currently on book 2. The characters are nicely developed and the story is entertaining and engaging. The narration is lovely and the nature of how the story is told is unique. It is kind of epistolary from many POVs which adds a lot of depth.
On the whole, this storyline is a bit more shallow than a lot of books of this genre I am used to but that is not a criticism. The stakes are just never quite as “life and death at every moment” high as some other stories so your emotional dips and highs aren't as big but sometimes I am in the mood for a nice palate-cleanser. Would recommend :)
This was a book I was not super into throughout but felt compelled to finish because it was somewhat interesting. There were a few questions early on that kept me listening because I wanted to know the answers. If not for them, I may have ditched earlier. Very different than the typical YA book. Odd places, scenarios, characters. Sometimes so odd I had a hard time relating but interesting enough so that I wanted to know more. I will not be getting the sequel though as I do not really care what happens to anyone :(
I was a bit nervous because I knew this had something to do with WWII and nazi's thinking it would be "one of those books" but I was so wrong. It is much more than that and only uses that as a backdrop for a set of relationships and stories that transcend time period and environment.
The narration is my favorite EVER on Audible and that is coming from a sworn Simon Vance fan.
The writing is beautiful.
The characters are so real to me even now. I cried, I chuckled, I used words and phrases from it in my everyday vocabulary for months.
YES. GET IT.
It takes a while to get through (which I like) and the whole story is so well built. Characters engaging. Great narrators. If you like historical fiction and British narrators reading to you, yay.
You will, however, want to listen to it again with a new understanding after the conclusion :)
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