Thursday, June 19, 2014

Review: After the Ending by Lindsey Fairleigh and Lindsey Pogue

Author(s): Lindsey Fairleigh and Lindsey Pogue
Series: The Ending #1
Genre: Post-Apocalyptic, Romance, New Adult
Publication Date: February 21, 2013



The Virus spread. Billions died. The Ending began. We may have survived the apocalypse, but the Virus changed us.

When people started getting sick, “they” thought it was just the flu. My roommate, my boyfriend, my family…they’re all gone now. I got sick too. I should have died with them—with the rest of the world—but I didn’t. I thought witnessing the human population almost disappear off the face of the earth was the craziest thing I’d ever experience. I was so wrong. My name is Dani O’Connor, and I survived The Ending.

The Virus changed everything. The world I knew is gone, and life is backwards. We’ve all had to start over. I’ve been stripped of my home, my dreams…all that is me. I’m someone else now—broken and changed. Other survivors’ memories and emotions haunt me. They invade my mind until I can no longer separate them from my own. I won’t let them consume me. I can’t. My name is Zoe Cartwright, and I survived The Ending.

We’ve been inseparable for most of our lives, and now our friendship is all we have left. The aftermath of the Virus has stranded us on opposite sides of the United States. Trusting strangers, making sacrifices, killing—we’ll do anything to reach one another. Fear and pain may be unavoidable, but we’re strong…we’re survivors. But to continue surviving in this unfamiliar world plagued by Crazies and strange new abilities, we have to adapt. We have to evolve.

And more than anything, we have to find each other.

Review
After the Ending was a book that I had kicking around on my Kindle for the better part of the last year. I knew it was one I wanted to read but just never seemed to find the time to sit down and read it. Boy was I wrong to wait. Not only was After the Ending an extremely well written story but it blended the best parts of several genres and left me wanting more by books end. 

One of the things I really liked about After the Ending were the characters. Due to the story following two groups, the cast of characters was large but I never had a problem distinguishing who was on the page at any given moment. I'd say my favorite character was Sarah (Book nerds unite!) but by the ending Dani (shockingly) started to grow on me as well. While both girls (Zoe and Dani) do have the most focus in the story, the background characters are still allowed to shine as well and at times even outshined the leads. 

Another thing that I liked about this story was the fact it felt like a Stand for this generation. Sure, nobody can replace Stephen King but these two ladies do a good job of trying.  I can't wait to see where they take the story in the sequel especially after that ending, woah boy. 

Lastly, I liked the nature of the virus itself. It was merciless and killed without prejudice. It also changed those who survived. The powers the characters develop was a nice little twist to the story and also set up those unaffected as potential antagonists for future books. In fact, we even see a glimpse of the prejudice against the changed in the middle of the story and trust me what went down wasn't pretty. It just goes to show how powerful fear of the unknown can be. 

Now although I really enjoyed After the Ending and will certainly be reading the sequel that's not to say that I didn't find fault with a few things. 

First off, I absolutely hated Dani in the beginning. Her boyfriend and supposed love of her life is dead barely 3 days and she's already lusting after her best friends brother Jason. Yes, I understand an attraction and even flirtation was inevitably happening but damn girl go take a cold shower already, rub one out even, just cool it with the sexy thoughts for awhile. 

Secondly, I really wish we had learned a bit about mystery guy. He's obviously powerful to be appearing in peoples dreams (many miles away) and yet Dani never takes a moment to think that maybe, just maybe, he has his own agenda and it might not be something she wants to be involved in. Instead she was basking in the attention and it's only when Jason starts giving her the time of day that she seems to not care about MG disappearing on her. Of course there is a reason for this but still it doesn't help her cause any. Her need for male approval just made her seem incredibly self obsessed. 

Lastly, I really thought it was silly that no cell phones or power was working but yet the internet is up running fine and well. The emails in the beginning, OK, but they should've stopped long before they did or at the very least made it known that the service was very shoddy as they made their way cross country. Yet, without fail, every stop Dani and Zoe along with other companions in their group use the internet to email loved ones stuck in their respective territories while the rest of the world goes to hell in a hand basket. It was too convenient for them to know exactly what was going on with each of them as they made there way to each other. 

Final Thoughts
After the Ending was a fast paced, emotionally charged, thrill ride through an apocalyptic landscape. Not only did the story meet my expectations but it far exceeded them. I highly recommend picking up this title if you haven't already. In fact, go ahead and pick up the sequel as well because trust me, you'll want to read these back to back. 

With that being said, I'll be rating After the Ending by Lindsey Fairleigh and Lindsey Pogue  
★★★★.

 *Copy purchased.  All opinions are my own and I was not compensated in an which way  for providing them.

About the Author(s)
Lindsey Fairleigh lives her life with one foot in a book—as long as that book transports her to a magical world or bends the rules of science. Her novels, from post-apocalyptic to time travel and historical fantasy, always offer up a hearty dose of unreality, along with plenty of adventure and romance. When she’s not working on her next novel, Lindsey spends her time reading and trying out new recipes in the kitchen. She lives in the Napa Valley with her supportive husband and confused cats.


Lindsey Pogue has always been a little creative. As a child she established a bug hospital on her elementary school soccer field, wrote her first YA manuscript in high school, and as an adult, expresses herself through writing. Her novels are inspired by her observations of the world
around her—whether she’s traveling, people watching, or hiking. When not plotting her next storyline or dreaming up new, brooding characters, Lindsey’s wrapped in blankets watching her favorite action flicks or going on road trips with her own leading man.
Lindsey Pogeu's Website
@lindseyrpogue

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