The Boy on the Bridge

The Boy on the BridgeThe Boy on the Bridge (The Hungry Plague, #2) by M.R. Carey
Published by Orbit on May 2nd 2017
Pages: 392
ISBN: 0316300330
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three-stars

“Once upon a time, in a land blighted by terror, there was a very clever boy.”

Stephen was very clever but even he could not make this book great for me. Let me start by saying that I LOVED “The Girl with all the Gifts” I thought it was AMAZING and I loved the POV chapters and of course, Melanie. Stephen is a 15-year-old autistic teen who has discovered that the “hungries” have maintained some of their humanity. He finds this interesting and compelling as he observes and ultimately interacts with them.

A team of scientists and military personnel are on-board, Rosie, which is basically an armored RV/motor home/lab, looking for a cure for the fungus that turns people into zombies/hungries. Rosie is where they do research, have sexual dalliances, stab each other in the back, make power plays, have resentments – you get the picture. Basically, the joys of living in extremely close quarters for months on end.

There are several characters in this book, but the main ones are Stephen and Dr. Samrina Khan. Khan and Stephen have a unique relationship. She rescued him when he was younger, and she is the only one allowed to touch him. Khan loves Stephen and feels responsible for him and his safety. Stephen is a unique 15-year-old and he is dedicated with finding the “cure”. Both of these characters are “troublemakers”. Dr. Khan is pregnant, and Stephen goes off on his own and conducts his research. He puts himself in danger to observe and interact with the hungries.

There were parts of this book that were just “blah” for me and parts that were really great – the great parts were mainly at the end. The story dragged in the beginning and did pick up stream. I liked that this book was not only about the hungries and finding the cure but also about humans trying to survive and the things they did for and against each other. I did not find that any of the characters in this book shined or stood out as they did in “The girl with all the gifts”. I rooted for and wanted more of the characters in this first book, and although; I liked Stephen and Khan, they did not wow me. For most of “The Boy on the Bridge” I was hoping for the story to get better and even when things did pick up at that point, I was left feeling meh. Perhaps, part of this was me having such high expectations as I loved the previous book. I wanted this one to WOW just as much. I’m sad to say that it did not.

Good not great.

Thank you to Orbit books and NetGalley who provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

three-stars

The Girl with All the Gifts

The Girl with All the GiftsThe Girl with All the Gifts by M.R. Carey
Published by Orbit on June 19th 2014
Pages: 460
ISBN: 0356500152
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four-stars

Who doesn’t love sweet Melanie? She is such a sweet girl, a special girl, a smart girl, a zombie. She is a good student who loves to learn. She loves her teacher, Ms. Justineau. She wants to please her teacher. Her teacher instructs her on so many wonderful things such as poetry, math, mythology, and other subjects. Other teachers tell her about the time before the breakdown. The time before the “hugries” or “junkers”. On days she is not in class Melanie thinks about her teacher…imagining situations where they are together. Melanie really likes her teacher because her teacher is nice to her.

Soldiers, where Melanie lives, come into her cell and strap her into a wheelchair and take her into a classroom. They call her and the other children names and are not friendly to them. They hose them down with a chemical spray and feed them grubs once a week. She tries to joke with them. She tries to tell them she wont hurt them. They never respond to her jokes.

There are doctors who look at them with their cold clinical eyes. Sometimes children are examined and they disappear. What type of place is this? What are the doctors looking for? How did the children get here? What is going on in the outside world?

What happens when a rag tag group of survivors must band together in an us against them type of situation. What bonds will they forge? How will they survive? What is going on with this virus?

This story takes place in an apocalyptic England. Not your genre of book? Take a Chance. Take a BIG chance because this book is wonderful. It is original, creative, imaginative, and so well thought out. You do not need to like horror novels, you do not need to like dystopian/apocalyptic books, you just need to have a love of reading. Again…TAKE A CHANCE ON THIS BOOK!

This book is like a gift that keeps on giving. I went into this book blind. I had no idea what it was about. I love doing approaching a book in this manner. I might not have read it otherwise. But I did. I did read it and now I want others to read it as well. Why? Because it is good. It is original. It is fresh. It is imaginative. It is scary (at times). It is well written. Okay, you get my drift.

The book will most likely chew you up and spit you out (bad Zombie pun) and that’s a good thing.

four-stars