Wednesday, February 29, 2012
MG/YA Sci-Fi: After the Snow by S.D. Crockett
Date: March 27, 2012
Acquired: from publisher
Read: for review (disclaimer: I received my copy of this book from the publisher in return for an honest review.)
Reading time: two days
From GoodReads: Fifteen-year-old Willo was out hunting when the trucks came and took his family away. Left alone in the snow, Willo becomes determined to find and rescue his family, and he knows just who to talk with to learn where they are. He plans to head across the mountains and make Farmer Geraint tell him where his family has gone. But on the way across the mountain, he finds Mary, a refugee from the city, whose father is lost and who is starving to death. The smart thing to do would be to leave her alone -- he doesn't have enough supplies for two or the time to take care of a girl -- but Willo just can't do it. However, with the world trapped in an ice age, the odds of them surviving on their own are not good. And even if he does manage to keep Mary safe, what about finding his family?
My review: After the Snow is pretty near perfect. The idea of the storyline is unique, the plot rarely drags, and the author's writing is nice and cohesive. I found the writing style and overall content to be more of a middle-grade read than a YA one (minus a bit of profanity towards the end), though it's certainly a great read for either target group.
I loved Crockett's idea for the apocalypse/dystopia. It picks up on current issues over global warming, sustainable practices, and ethics, but these are rather muted and a background to the characters' adventures. Every once in a while, the author will delve deeper into the issues running behind everything. Part of what's unique about After the Snow as a dystopia is also the method of resistance, based more on a utopian theory than fighting the oppressors. The novel becomes more about a teenage boy finding himself and understanding the world, unlike other YA sci-fi books where the characters are just trying to bust the system.
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