Life in the frozen wastelands of Texas is anything but easy, but for Clay Whitaker there is always more at stake than mere survival.
Yellowstone, along with two other Super Volcanoes, exploded with a tremendous fury following months of heightened seismic activity worldwide. The devastating eruptions released unmeasurable quantities of ash into the atmosphere. Coastlines were changed. New canyons were formed. Temperatures plummeted, dragging economies down, too. With no real way to sustain order, governments around the world began to fold, societies collapsed.
It’s been seven years since the ash rained down from the sky. Populations are thinning. Food is scarce. Despair overwhelming. Clay and his sister Megan have taken a handful of orphaned children into their home—a home soaring 16 stories into the sky. Providing for his adopted family is a 24/7 job for Clay. And with roughly six short months a year to gather enough food and supplies to last the long, brutal winter, Clay is forced to spend much of his time away from home—scavenging, hunting, and bartering.
Despite the vicious, unforgiving world he lives in, Clay has grown accustomed to his new life. That is, until he meets Kelsey Lambert.
Now, with winter rolling in earlier than ever, Clay must swiftly adapt to the changes in his life to ensure the safety of those he cares about.
I always like a good post-apocalyptic novel, I don't know why, it's not like I want the world to come to an end but I enjoy reading about the creativity, the bravery and hardship that follow these types of novels. Sometimes I can't help but picture what I'd do if faced with a horde of zombies coming my way...... I'd probably trip my family up and use them as bait while I escape.
As the Ash Fell is based on Clay as he and his sister struggle to provide for their family of 10 orphans, yes that's right 10 orphans!
The story follows Clay's day-to-day involvement as he interacts with various groups of people some friendly, others not so much, as well as how fights to protect his family. Another dimension's added when Clay stumbles upon Kelsey and her daughter as they are about to be attacked by murderous thugs and of course or hero can't let that happen.
You know what, I rather enjoyed the book and I liked the characterisation of Clay and Kelsey. They both grew as the book progressed. Yes, Clay was a bit too saintly for my preference but it was never eye rolling stuff. I thought the story was well written and the author made things simple, he didn't try to overelaborate when describing action scenes which made it flow more easily.
I did also appreciate that Clay was not disguised as Rambo, he was vulnerable and (to my slight frustration) got his share of beatings, but his courage and sense of virtue proved to be his strength.
The only negative I would say, and it is only a slight one, is that I thought there was too much emphasis on the romantic side of things and at times it felt more like a romance novel, but hey in a world where someone will kill you over a can of tuna, you need some love.
A very good dystopian novel about hope, survival, and the importance of family in such a desolate world.
It's not your typical macho-alpha male book that describes in endless pages about this gun or that one, so if you're pasionately into your guns and action then you proably won't enjoy this book as much, if however you want to read about a tale of human endevours and the values people hold in times of bleak despair, then give this book a try.
Out of 10 Stars:
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