Tuesday, March 31, 2015

In the Afterlight by Alexandra Bracken

 Title: In the Afterlight
Author: Alexandra Bracken
Released October 28th, 2014
Bought on Kindle
Rating: 3.5/5

Spoiler-Free Summary

 Ruby can't look back. Fractured by an unbearable loss, she and the kids who survived the government's attack on Los Angeles travel north to regroup. With them is a prisoner: Clancy Gray, son of the president, and one of the few people Ruby has encountered with abilities like hers. Only Ruby has any power over him, and just one slip could lead to Clancy wreaking havoc on their minds.

They are armed only with a volatile secret: proof of a government conspiracy to cover up the real cause of IAAN, the disease that has killed most of America's children and left Ruby and others like her with powers the government will kill to keep contained. But internal strife may destroy their only chance to free the "rehabilitation camps" housing thousands of other Psi kids.

Meanwhile, reunited with Liam, the boy she would-and did-sacrifice everything for to keep alive, Ruby must face the painful repercussions of having tampered with his memories of her. She turns to Cole, his older brother, to provide the intense training she knows she will need to take down Gray and the government. But Cole has demons of his own, and one fatal mistake may be the spark that sets the world on fire.

Spoilers Ahead! 

Although In the Afterlight is a bit long for my tastes at 535 pages, the side characters and descriptions make it bearable. Once again, the side characters are my precious babies, and if you've read my posts on the previous two books you'll know how much I love Chubs. I totally could see Chubs and Vida getting together so when it finally happened I felt triumphant that I successfully predicted that ship.

For some reason, Ruby doesn't appeal to me all that much. I don't know what it is about dystopian books and their heroines. Even Liam wasn't particularly likeable to me. It's all personal taste, though, so you may feel way different than me about it.

I will probably stay away from YA dystopian novels for awhile because I just find them bland. There always seems to be these stretches of inactivity, where the main character spends all her time brooding away. In the Afterlight was no exception here, and I found it very predictable. For me, it was obvious after the first or second time Ruby couldn't figure out how she had gotten somewhere that Clancy was controlling her. I think Ruby should have been able to come to this conclusion much sooner than she did. Wouldn't you be awfully suspicious if you blacked out several times? I just find it unrealistic to blame something like that on stress.

Speaking of unrealistic, some of the things that Liam and Cole said felt odd coming from a teenager. It's just hard to imagine a teenager giving nicknames like "darlin'" or "gem."

Overall, it was alright, but nothing special as far as dystopian books go. When I really love a book, I don't want to put it down, but with this series I had to force myself just to sit down and finish it.

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