This is book is amazing. Shusterman is an extremely gifted author who creates vivid new worlds. His characters are so believable that they become real. You relate with them and struggle with them. Their fear becomes your fear. His world is not our own, but how easily it could be. The rationalization makes sense and in our current climate you could see how easily something so horrific could start taking place.
If anything this book was too real.
I am the parent of three teenagers all of which have special needs. While they are all amazing they also have struggles. There is a long history of doing away with children like my own. They were put in camps during the Holocaust, shoved in unsafe asylums, and any number of atrocity. In Shusterman's world my children would not stand a chance. I think this is why it hit a little too close to home to me. I just cannot see myself being able to continue reading this series.
Yet it is a story that needs to be told. People need to think about the value they put on other people's lives and the justifications they use to devalue them.
The Road Ahead is an apocalyptic science fiction novel that follows Heather Morgan, a survivor of a virus that has wiped out the majority of the world's population. Heather was a biological researcher working on a vaccine to the virus before all hope was lost. Now she is just alone.
It is impossible to read this book and not compare it to The Road by Cormac McCarthy. It is a testament to Broncucia's writing that even with such a comparison that this book rates a solid four stars. I knew I was going to enjoy it from the first page of reading. The writing is solid and the characters are realistic but at times a tad sterotypical.
When you have novels that feature so few characters the portrayal of the characters that you do have becomes essential. The book becomes more about human motivation then about action. Broncucia does a good job describing her characters making them distinct and full of depth. While I would have prefered that this was expanded a little more, it is really a personal preference and not a fault of the book.
After reading this book I was left with a breath of emotions. I find it hard to articulate without giving spoilers. However, it did leave me contemplating the journey of life and thinking about what risks are worth taking.
The book ended on a cliff hanger. While The Road Ahead is worth reading on it's own I would like to continue Heather's journey to see not only her fate, but also the fate of the world. She is possibly the only one who has the ability to save it.
I picked this book while looking around a bookstore. I had never heard of it, and it was not a normal type of read for me. However, the writing looked good and it was on sale so I decided that I would give it a try.
The writing remained good. The sentences flowed well, the characters were well developed, while purposely being not developed. While confusing for me to explain, Banner did an excellent job with the characters in this book. They were real people, and yet completely disconnected. For this story it was perfect.
The main character was the most intriguing. The reader is finding out about her at the same time that she is finding out about herself. Her memories leave a mystery. I can honestly say that I did not see the ending coming in the completeness that it did. I had my theories, and they were not quite correct. It was very well done.
I was impressed with how Banner handled the psychological aspect of it all, although the therapist annoyed me quite a bit. I am really glad that I decided to pick this book up. It was a refreshing change, and I have found I added yet another psychological thriller to my reading list this month because I enjoyed it so well.
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