So, I'm glad to see you stop by when you do. I've got several non-review blog posts written (in my head). I'll try to get them posted soon. I promise I'll make them as controversial as possible. Or maybe just add naked people. Or something.
Be sure to check out the giveaway below the review and the other Bookanista reviews.
P.S. As always, thank you.
ASHFALL by Mike Mullin
Summary: Under the bubbling hot springs and geysers of Yellowstone National Park is a supervolcano. Most people don't know it's there. The caldera is so large that it can only be seen from a plane or satellite. It just could be overdue for an eruption, which would change the landscape and climate of our planet.
Ashfall is the story of Alex, a teenage boy left alone for the weekend while his parents visit relatives. When the Yellowstone supervolcano erupts unexpectedly, Alex is determined to reach his parents. He must travel over a hundred miles in a landscape transformed by a foot of ash and the destruction of every modern convenience that he has ever known, and through a new world in which disaster has brought out both the best and worst in people desperate for food, water, and warmth. With a combination of nonstop action, a little romance, and very real science, this is a story that is difficult to stop reading and even more difficult to forget.
I've read a lot of post-apocalyptic-y stories lately, so I went into ASHFALL wondering how it might be different from all the rest. And here's what I concluded: Holy crap. ASHFALL is somehow one part terrifying and one part hope. And really, it's that hope that sets it apart. For starters.
Okay, so for the terrifying--as far as world-altering catastrophes go, this story is totally possible. We're not talking an outbreak of a disease that will eventually run its course after killing off a large sector of the population (or a disease that turns people in crazed, cannibalistic zombies), or cyborgs that take over the world, or some mind-altering drug that heightens the intelligence of apes and turns them against humans. While all these make for super cool stories, there's always the knowledge that these scenarios aren't that possible (or if they are, they're likely not permanent). But a supervolcano eruption? In our lifetime? Totally feasible and totally world changing. It's this knowledge that underscores every page.
There's also the genuine way in which the story is told. Thought it's not present in an in-your-face sort of way, I can imagine serious research went into the writing of ASHFALL. Science and psychology play a large role, from the way in which the eruption affects the landscape to the ingenious McGyver-y methods employed by characters for overcoming hurdles, as well as the human reactions to catastrophe. Alex, the mc, faces some really dark times in this, as you might imagine when food and supplies are scarce. This story is a fresh, realistic depiction of what happens when governments collapse and survival is threatened. Alex faces danger far beyond starvation, and is forced to mature very quickly.
But there's hope, too, and this is what I found particularly refreshing about this story. While some truly horrendous things do happen, we also see some of the best sides of human nature. See, catastrophe doesn't bring out ONLY the worst in people. I'm so happy to see a book illustrate how amazing humans can be in the face of tragedy and despair. And in the midst of it all, there's love, too. A bit of romance, but from a male POV, which is awesome. And he's not some hunky stud of a male either, but a geeky 15-16 year old in the height of adolescent splendor (*cough*). This too is treated genuinely, so, yah, there's some awkwardness and blushing. Great fun, I tell you. ASHFALL is at times quite grim, packed with heart pounding action, but there's humor too and moments of respite. It's a book you won't be able to put down.
**************************Up for grabs today (click on book covers for summary in a new window:
Signed ARC of ASHFALL
by Mike Mullin
ARC of WITHOUT TESS
by Marcella Pixley
ARC OF UNFORSAKEN
by Sophie Littlefield
Signed ARC of TRIS AND IZZIE
by Mette Ivie Harrison
This giveaway is international and ends Monday, October 3, midnight EST. You must be 13 years old to enter. If you win, you will need to provide an address for shipment. Under 18's must have parent/guardian permission to enter.
Click Here to enter the 4 ARC International Giveaway
Thanks for entering!
THIS GIVEAWAY HAS NOW CLOSED
Here are the winners:
Signed ARC of ASHFALL
ARC of WITHOUT TESS
ARC of UNFORSAKEN
ARC of TRIS & IZZIE
Congratulations on your win! Please email me an address to which I can ship your book. Huge thank you to all who entered! If you haven't done so yet, be sure to enter to win Signed Jay Asher books (an ARC of THE FUTURE OF US and THIRTEEN REASONS WHY).
*************************Be sure to check out what the other Bookanistas are highlighting:
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Shannon Whitney Messenger loves Lola & the Boy Next Door – with giveaway
Beth Revis delights in The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer – with giveaway
Shelli Johannes-Wells falls for Fracture
Carolina M Valdez adores Ashfall – with giveaway
Jessi Kirby marvels at The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer
Shana Silver steps up to Audition
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