Monday, December 11, 2017

Elle Casey: Kahayatle

Elle Casey introduces readers to a world where adults have vanished and what happens to the kids and teenagers when left to their own devices:

Bryn Mathis was 16 years old when her father died, however, this is nothing new to the world, as adults have been dying for years now. The youth have been left alone for a while now and Bryn knows that it is time to move on from her family home as she is almost out of food and a gang of kids has started to roam her neighbourhood looking for trouble. Bryn knows that she shouldn't trust anyone but when a strange kid appears next door she realizes how much she has been missing human contact and they decide to set out to look for a new shelter and food hopefully some place safe. But something as happened to some of the youth that have been left behind, they have lost some of their humanity.

This book was a great read, and I was surprised how dark Casey took this book as it is a YA read. I would say that this is more for an older or adult YA book, based upon the content of the book. This said Casey does not go too far in to description or detail about what is happening, which at times can be worse as it leaves it up to your imagination, but there are several scenes and flashbacks in the book that most people would find disturbing. The one thing that is not really explored in the book is why all the adults died or whether once an teen turns 18 will they too pass away. Maybe this is not explained as the main characters a teenager, or maybe Casey will address it is further books in the series, I'm just left scratching my head about it as nothing is explained.

It always seems when the world goes to hell, humanity goes with it as well, so I guess this is almost to be expected in books like this. Casey takes the idea to a whole new level though with having youth be the ones who have lost this humanity in the form that they become cannibals aka canners. We first really learn about it through Peter and his tragic past but our main characters run in to them and the ending is one that will have you searching for the next book in this series.  They are not zombies these people have chosen an "easier" way to survive by entering into cannibalism. The Canners also become more sophisticated in their process by the end of the book,

I liked the three main characters in this book and how they play off each other, there is some intereting and funny banter that occurs. Bryn is the strength, Peter is the brain and Bobo is really the heart (and at time the comedic relief) of the team that they form, oh yes and Buster the dog, who doesn't need a dog at the end of everything. My main complaint with a character was Bobo being from Germany and the accent that was written in to the book. It took a while to get used to the words being written how someone would say then in English if they had a very heavy German accent.

This book was much more than I expected and was not only darker than I expected but also an interesting story. I look forward to picking up the second book in this series.

***Fun fact of the moment this book is currently free on amazon, so I suggest you pick up your copy ASAP***

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Sunday, December 3, 2017

B. A. Paris: The Breakdown

B. A. Paris takes the reader on a roller-coaster ride that starts with a murder and spins further and further out of control:

One night Cass decides to take a shortcut home through the back roads, even though she know she shouldn't. It pitch black out and the rain is pouring down but she wants to get home faster than going around. Cass did not know that this one act would change her life forever. She passes a vehicle on the side of the road with the driver in the front seat, she slows down to see if the woman needs help but they do not exit the car so Cass continues on. Cass finds out the next morning that the woman has been killed and Cass feels nothing but guilt. Then strange things begin to happen to Cass phone calls, misplacing items, seeing thing, and begins forgetting things that she know she should not.When she starts to feel someone watching her she is convinced that it leads back to the night on the road, she feels guilty for not helping and could the killer now be after her?

Paris' debut novel was one of my favourite from the past year so I had really high expectations for her second novel and she really did live it up to them. What I think that I liked the most was that it was completely different from her first book in the story line as well as how the plot is laid out. There is nothing more refreshing where the author strays from their other novel(s) and does something completely different. There is still what I will call Paris' flare but she does not rely on Behind Closed Doors to define this book, this may disappoint some readers if they are looking for something along the lines of Behind Closed Doors part two and I think in the beginning I was but this book was Sold to me by the end.

Cass' deterioration within this book is truly the highlight of it. The details that Paris needed to lay out in this book are very well done and it was really interesting to see her bring everything altogether. From Cass beginning to believe that she is suffering from the same memory loss and early on-set dimension that her mother eventually passed away from to the events that she is so sure that she is experiencing it is really well done. Paris does a good job of showing the paranoia that Cass has around losing her memory and how just forgetting one simple thing can spiral things out of for Cass and makes things even worse in her life and the isolation that it causes not just from her friends and coworkers but also from her husband.

In a way this book was may seem less compelling that Behind Closed Doors as the story is not as dramatic or sinister but this does not mean that it is any way boring. This also does not mean that I did not enjoy the book, actually the opposite of that especially when you really get in to the book, I just think that if people are looking for a Behind Closed doors repeat, this book is not it.

This book is like a slow burn that is completely worth it in the end. Paris knows how to bring suspense to her writing and have reader devour her books. I look forward to the next book by Paris.

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