After the catastrophe with the blurb of Every Time a Bell Rings, I decided not to read the blurb for this book and had chosen it purely from the high praise it had received from bloggers and other authors including Jessie Burton – who I think is an outstanding author, therefore anything she deems good, is worthy to be on my TBR list!
So when I read the first few chapters, I had no idea that this would be a post-apocalyptic book! If any of you have been following me from my early days as a blogger, you might recall that my first time with the post-apocalypse genre (The End of the World Running Club) didn’t end well and so I was worried this book would end up on the ‘I’m never gonna finish that’ pile on my bookshelf. As you can guess, (otherwise why would I write a review on it?!) my second time with the genre was more successful.
This is the story of how an aggressive strain of swine flu killed off 99% of the world’s population and how the survivors carried on. I think the reason why I enjoyed this story so much was because it flitted between multiple characters and it spent a lot of time looking into the past to see how these characters used to live… and this style really works for me; it’s addictive and allows you to get attached to characters very quickly – coincidently a similar style is used on the tv show Lost, which I’ve only just stared watching over the past two weeks but have somehow ended up halfway through the second series already… I guess I’m a sucker for this style! This book was also much more positive and uplifting and focused heavily on how people had made the most of a bad situation rather than being doom and gloom.
One of the key characters in this book is introduced right at the start and then you don’t find out what has happened to them after the outbreak until you’re about halfway way through; I fell hook, line and sinker for this trick… I was generally intrigued and read as quickly as I could, just to find out if they’d ever appear in the book again!
The way the characters crossed each other’s paths; either directly or mentioned in conversation, made this story both complex and endearing – it was stitched together beautifully. The back stories of the characters were all unique and were also used as a way to introduce further characters into the tale, hence there was an ongoing arrival of new and alluring characters which led you wondering ‘What happened to them?’
I’m not going to lie… this genre still gives me the creeps… I can’t help wondering what I’d do if it actually happened and hope that I’d be one of the lucky ones!
Until next time, Chloé x