Friday, 6 June 2014

After the Snow

After the Snow by S.D. Crockett

“And it had been my voice. It always been my voice.”

Willo is a 15 year old who lives in the Hills with his family until the day everybody disappears and Willo is left behind alone.

Part 1 of this book consists of Willo talking about his father, the leader of their group and someone who believes that there is a better possibility of how to live their lives than in the hills. Magda, the stepmother and the person who looks after the children and then there’s Alice, the 14 year old sister who is married and has a child with the neighbour who’s older than her father. Finally there’s Patrick a stranger who joins the family.  

Whilst others are learning to read, Willo would rather be talking to dog. After finding the skull of a dog also the leader of the pack. Willo finds that this dog talks to him. It’s basically his conscience. The dog tells him good advice, things that save him whilst the mad dog tells him things that aren’t bad but will probably put his life in danger like saving Mary.

Mary is a 13 year old who lives near Willo, one day when Willo is debating over what to do now that he’s alone he finds Mary and her brother. Both of them are starving and near death. Dog tells him to run as he doesn’t have the food or strength to take care for them, Willo does this but mad dog tells him he can’t just leave them behind.

Willo saves Mary but it’s too late to save her brother. Willo and Mary journey to the roads where some military truck will probably pick Mary up however some greybeards (cannibals) chase them and they both end up hiding in a truck and going to the city.

That was the end of part 1. The good part.

Part 2 is basically Willo making a few mistakes like abandoning Mary and ending up working for an older couple. It was written in a way that was fast paced but the story was boring. Nothing interesting happened and in both part 1 and 2 and the story is just an uninteresting life story of Willo working on coats and boots.  With no suspense built up when the action happens it’s totally unexpected and useless.  Yes we find out the truth behind this “beacon of hope” but nothing in part 1 or 2 hinted that this person was untrustworthy and would betray him.

But I did like the ending; everybody’s trying to find this Island. The Island where you can restart your life but Willo realises that the “beacon of hope” isn’t the island.  It’s inside you.

“A pretty skin for certain. But underneath it all a squirming mass of flesh and maggots.”

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