Author: Shauna Granger
Publication date: December 2nd, 2013
Synopsis (according to Goodreads):
There are two inherent truths in the world; life as we know it is over, and monsters are real.
The Pestas came in the night, spreading their pox, a deadly plague that decimated the population. Kat, one of the unlucky few who survived, is determined to get to her last living relative and find shelter from the pox that continues to devastate the world. When it mutates and becomes airborne, Kat is desperate to avoid people because staying alone might be her only chance to stay alive.
That is, until she meets Dylan. Dylan with his easy smile and dark, curly hair, has nowhere to go and no one to live for. He convinces Kat there can be safety in numbers, that they can watch out for each other. So the unlikely couple set off together through the barren wasteland to find a new life--if they can survive the roaming Pestas, bands of wild, gun-toting children, and piles of burning, pox-ridden bodies.
I received an e-copy of this book from the blog tour host for participation in the tour and an honest review.
With the threat of the world ending just last year still heavy in my mind (not that I believed such things, of course), I have found my way into a lot of post-apocalyptic reads. I find the devastation of a world destroyed or life as we know it being threatened to be of particular interest. Watching characters turn to their most basic instincts and fight to stay alive. Isn't that what makes for a good read? To watch a life decimated only to look up and realize everything is right in the world of reality? Makes people grateful for what they have, and I with Thanksgiving having just past, I was in the mood for a book that made me grateful for an easy existence.
World of Ash hits the ground running from the very first sentence. Kat is a young girl who is on her own. Her parents are lost to the disease that has claimed a majority of the world. She only knows of an uncle who lives off the grid and in the safety of his "hippie" lifestyle on Washington. She is desperate to get to him and his hydroelectrical oasis of a state. She is forced to face groups of survivors who have decided to take whatever they can from whomever they please without any regard for those people they leave stripped of all their supplies. After one particular incident leaves Kat even more frightened than before, she chooses to avoid people as a whole. That is until Dylan stumbles up to the doorstep of the house she is squatting in.
Dylan is desperate for help for his last surviving friend, despite the clear evidence that his friend is already infected. He made his way to a town doctor's house for help and only finds Kat in the physician's place. Soon after he loses his friend to the pox and is left to wonder what to do now. Kat is his lifeline. She is the first person his is confronted with after losing everyone he knows and he clings to her. He begs her to let him come along with her to which she reluctantly agrees.
After that moment, Dylan and Kat are in it together. They are a unlikely duo set on reaching Kat's uncle in hopes of finally being safe. But the world is harsh and dangerous and they must trust in each other more than ever. With a budding romance cementing their connection to each other Dylan and Kat are on a trip for salvation that may just be their doom.
I had heard superior things about the author Shauna Granger. Her Elemental series is still resting heavily on my TBR and I was anxious to see how her writing was. I was sucked in pretty quickly. There was danger around every corner. I found myself squealing a few times over a few of the close calls Dylan and Kat had in their journey. My heart raced, my brain became scattered with scenerios and how I would handle them myself, and my finger could not dance quickly enough across the screen of my e-reader.
I did not know the book was going to leave on a cliffhanger so that was a big disheartening. I saw the percentage on my e-reader growing higher and higher and I knew there wasn't going to be a resolution in the last 3% of the book. I was devastated. I wanted to continue on further. I wanted to see what happened next. Cliffhangers can be the worst... but then there's the joy one can feel with knowing another full-length book is on the horizon.
World of Ash will rivet its readers with a tangible fear for the characters in the story and the reality that a world of devastation is not such a far off concept.