Survivors of a calamitous event carry on.
It’s been some time since a deadly virus wiped out most of the world’s population. White teen Sawyer somehow survived, and he’s been on his own foraging for food and doing his best to stay alive, but there isn’t much purpose for him beyond that. Olive-skinned teen Sara survives with her father, Jacob, holed up in a location that is quickly running out of food. Circumstances push Sawyer and Sara out of their territories and on the road south, and eventually the two teens bump into one another and form a connection. More survivors emerge, and as a small community starts to take shape in a deserted Spanish Mission, relationships are tested and familial bonds are strained. The bloody and violent novel will certainly scratch an itch for readers who adore The Walking Dead and other post-apocalyptic fare, but the author doesn’t add anything new to this well-worn genre. The dialogue leaves much to be desired: Characters exposit and openly declare intent with little flourish or subtlety. The book’s strength is its tactical vision of a lawless disaster zone. Survivalists will find much to engage with here, and fans of political give-and-take will get something to chew on as well. A sequel is alluded to in the novel’s final moments, but the book contains a solid stand-alone story.
A decent kickoff to a post-apocalyptic series. (Fiction. 14-18)