3 articles tagged as apocalypse

Struck, by Jennifer Bosworth

Rating: 3 out of 5

Summary: Mia Price is a human lightning rod, or so it seems. She cannot go out into a storm without getting struck, yet, somehow, she always manages to survive. Embarrassed by the scars that cover her body and scared that people will get hurt if they stand too close to her, Mia tries to keep to herself. Following an earthquake that devastated Los Angeles, and which some people claim was caused by lightning, Mia is finding it harder to stay in the shadows. Cult members from an evangelical church led by a man name Prophet are hunting Mia along with another group that is fighting against Prophet, known as the Seekers. And both groups keep telling Mia that the world is coming to an end and that its fate rests on her shoulders. To complicate matters, the mysterious, attractive boy Jeremy keeps urging Mia to stay away from both groups. As the End nears, Mia’s must decide – is fate written, or can it be changed.

Disclosure: I received an ARC of Struck from www.almostgrownup.net.

All in all, this was not a bad book, but I did not think it lived up to its potential. The premise is great – a girl who controls lightning, the end of the world, and secret cults. But once I got past the premise, the book fell short for me.

The biggest problem was that I didn’t really feel invested in the characters. I didn’t care if they lived or died. I didn’t want to see the world end, so I had to side with the people trying to save it, but otherwise, I didn’t have anything to root for.

I also found the plot to be a little overcomplicated. There were a lot of unanswered questions. The logistics of the powers didn’t really make sense to me. In Ashes, some of the characters seem to acquire special powers after an EMP, but the logic behind this is explained and seems plausible enough. I would have liked to have seen some sort of explanation about how the people who got their powers were chosen. Otherwise, it just seems a bit too random.

I thought I was going to have a bigger issue with the religious aspects of the book, but I thought Bosworth handled them nicely. So often in apocalypse books the religious elements become too intense and preachy, but Bosworth did not get preachy. Rather she showed us a cult that played on people’s’ fears. I’ve seen people turn to religion after traumatic events, so this seemed like a relevant addition and I thought Bosworth handled it with grace.

As an easy beach summer read, this book would work, but if you have a stack of things you are dying to read, I would probably recommend reading them first.


Ashes, by Ilsa J. Bick

Rating: 5 out of 5

Summary: Alex is dying. She has a brain tumor that can’t be cured and she can tell that she is getting worse. Determined to die in peace, Alex takes a trip out to the woods to scatter her parents ashes and come to terms with her own mortality. And then the unthinkable happens. An EMT goes off, killing all electronics and casting the country, and, possibly, the world, into a state of chaos.

With the help of Tom, a young soldier, and Ellie, a young girl whose grandfather and only family member died in the EMT, Alex struggles to survive in this new world, where millions are dead and the survivors are mostly untrustworthy or worse, extremely deadly.

I don’t want to give away too much more about this book. I think what made it so engaging for me were all of the surprises and twists. It has been a long time since I read a book that kept me guessing and on the edge of my seat – this book did that and more. While there were a couple of things I guessed, I did not see the ending coming at all. And I’m dying to read the next book.

Great Characters

For starters, the characters all have depth. Even the minor characters were 3-dimensional. Everyone had something they were fighting for and I believed everyone’s story.

The main character, Alex, was very well done. She had layers and she grew in a very believable way. I could make sense of her decisions and understand her feelings. The same was true for Tom and, while she was a little obnoxious at first, even Ellie.

I did have a slightly harder time with a couple of the characters later in the book, mostly in Part 4, but I don’t want to say anything about them because that would ruin the suspense. I will say, though, that Part 4 got a little weird for me, but it was worth sticking it out to get to Part 5.


I’m glad I went into this book knowing very little about it. I thought it would be your typical apocalypse story, which in some ways it is, but in other ways it is not. Had I known more about it, I may not have read it. But I’m glad I did because this book does not fit neatly into any of the boxes it could be put into, genre-wise. Even if you have heard some things that make you think you don’t want to read it, you really should give it a chance. I promise you will not regret it.


Life's little comforts (that I cannot live without)

I’ve been reading a lot of post-apocalyptic books lately (stay tuned for my upcoming reviews of The Eleventh Plague and Ashes, Ashes) and it’s really got me thinking about how well I would fair in a post-apocalyptic world. Assuming I even made it that far. I’d like to pretend that I’d be fine in a post-apocalyptic world. But the truth is, I think I would struggle with the apocalypse part and most likely not even make it to the post-apocalyptic part.

Recently I’ve been thrown into a lot of situations which have revealed my ability to deal with the unexpected, or rather, my inability.

Case 1: No power

If you recall, about 3 weeks ago I was thrust into a 3-day power outage. And I was completely lost. My phone wasn’t charged, my kindle was running low on power and forget about my computer. And then, of course, there was the whole lack of internet. And the cold water (I have no shame admitting that I went 2.5 days without a shower). It became very clear to me just how much I rely on power. I couldn’t cook, I couldn’t clean, I couldn’t do laundry, and, since most of my books are electronic, I couldn’t even read. Since I’m pretty sure the apocalypse usually wipes out power, I’d probably be struggling to keep myself from having a mental breakdown from the get-go.

Case 2: No bed

There comes a point in every apocalypse where you have to make the hard choice to leave your home. This decision came pretty quickly to Alex in Ashfall, but a bit more slowly to Lucy in Ashes, Ashes. I think I’d probably be more along the lines of Lucy. And one of the top reasons would be that I need a bed. I spent the past week and a half sleeping on an air mattress and I was MISERABLE. I couldn’t sleep, I was irritable, my head hurt, and that was better by far than sleeping on the ground, which seems to be a common post-apocalyptic sleeping situation. And then, of course, my home has my things, and this leads to the third point.

Case 3: Materialism

OK, I know this is super un-PC, but I have come to terms with the fact that I am 100% materialistic. When the boxes of my things finally arrived and I found myself in an apartment surrounded by my stuff, I felt much more at ease than I had prior to my things arriving. As awful as it makes me sound, I think I would be really upset having to leave behind everything I have to wander around a destroyed world.

Assuming I did make it out of the apocalypse and into the post-apocalyptic world, I’d probably be alright. I know how to start a fire and I will eat pretty much anything and I have a variety of survival skills. But those only really help me if I can get over the no power, no bed, and no personal items. So let’s keep our fingers crossed that there’s no apocalypse. Otherwise I might be in for a bit of trouble.

What about you? Do you think you could make it through the apocalypse? Would you be able to survive in a post-apocalyptic world?