So, this is one of those books I have been meaning to read forever. First I meant to get it forever, but it's been sitting on my shelf for two years now. Melissa at I Swim For Oceans always had this on her Top 10 List, whether it was Top 10 Dystopian, Top 10 All Around, or Top 10 Books I'd Love to See as a Film. Her love of this book really made me understand, I needed to read this book! So I finally made time to read it. I know why she liked it so much!
Sometimes you feel like you've read every dystopian out there, don't you? But not this one. This felt like life had gone back to the 1800's with the exception that Lynn and Mother would kill anyone that set foot near their pond, the only water around. And they have a truck, but they don't use it unless they absolutely have to use it. Survival is all there is, living isn't really anything but survival. Lynn doesn't know any other way, doesn't know anyone but Mother and the man that lives in the shack on the land next door. But really she only knows him by his red bandanna that he waves as a signal that everything is okay.
The story is told from Lynn's point of view, very stark and raw. Lynn is fiercely protective of her pond, of her way of life, and she learns how to let people in and become fiercely protective of them. Family, in this time, is what you make it, not who you are born to and this makes for an interesting story later on in the book. Lynn has some amazing character growth as she goes from the girl sitting by Mother's side on the top of the barn taking out anyone that wandered close to the pond to a young woman caring for others and protecting them from any harm.
The world is a glaring case of what could happen to us in the future. I hear reports about the world's drinking water supply drying up and I know that all the money in the world isn't going to fix that problem. A big house, a young face, a fancy car, none of that helps when it comes to a lack of resources. Let's hope it doesn't come to that. I don't want to be around for the Zombie Apocalypse, the Alien Invasion or just the Apocalypse or anything that Mike Mullin dreams up!
This is a quick read and there is a sequel, In a Handful of Dust, that I have decided not to read. Although the ending to this came down pretty quickly, there is an epilogue or a follow up that shows several years into the future that leaves me in a good place with the characters. The reviews on the sequel are mediocre and I choose to leave things as they are. But it's up to you if you want to continue with the story.
This is on the darker side of dystopians so I'd say this is for the 13 and up crowd. There is violence, death, talk of prostitution, talk of rape and sex off the page. Some of the death is graphic. None gratuitous.
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