Here again with a thrilling thriller of an apocalyptic novel *Begins to froth at mouth* I love Apocalyptic novels...
Here's the jaw-breaking Blurby-Blurb!
"Not every gift is a blessing...
Every morning, Melanie waits in her cell to be collected for class.
When they come for her, Sergeant Parks keeps his gun pointing at her while two of his people strap her into the wheelchair. She thinks they don't like her. She jokes that she won't bite, but they don't laugh.
The Girl With All the Gifts is a groundbreaking thriller, emotionally charged and gripping from beginning to end."
I am flipping out type of excited to review this book, so let's jump straight into it with teeth bare and nails tearing apart the good and the bad!
*There will be spoiler upon spoiler and spoilers on the side. If you HAVE NOT read this book and would like to know more about it, check out its rating on the 'Ratings and Index' page, go out and get the book, read it, THEN come back and rant with me! :)*
I'm been on a bit of a binge with this genre because, I myself, am writing one. It gives me a lot of different ideas, ways of writing, and helps me to understand why these characters mean more to me than others and how I can replicate that in my novel.
The Girl (Is what I will call it because if I have to write out the entire title each time, I will lose the finger power to write a long and ranty post) has been on my To-Read List for a looooonnnng time now. It was the next book on my Book Depository Wishlist to buy, but just as luck would have it, I found it at the op shop for $3! *Throws all the bargains into the air while I laugh maniacally*
I'm not sure just how I stumbled upon it, but it's been on my Wishlist for far too long. I'm like that - I'll have a 100+ wishlist, but will stumble across other books for cheaper and ones that I haven't researched at all, and buy that instead, continuing the cycle of a bigger wishlist and more stumbling onto random books that are mediocre.
It freaks me out. Normally I'm adversed to having people on covers of books, but I think it works for The Girl just because of how creepy it/she is. It reminds me a lot of the Little Girl Walker in The Walking Dead. First impressions last, and that's why I grabbed this book as soon as it reminded me of TWD.
On the inside of the cover is all the recommendations and fantastic rave reviews about it. I thought that was a really smart idea, and I liked it. Some books plaster all their reviews on the front of the cover and it spoils it. It just makes it more about, 'HEY! COME AND SEE WHAT ALL THESE PEOPLE SAID ABOUT THIS BOOK!' instead of just naturally drawing me to it because it has a beautiful cover, intriguing title, and a Blurby-Blurb that makes me justify opening to the first page and seeing what all the fuss is about.
(I'd rate it a 8.5 out of 10 for Covers and Blurbs)
Melanie is a 10 year old who lives on a Military Base with other children. Each day they go to school, wheeled in and muzzled by Soldiers who aim their guns at their heads.
Justineau is Melanie's teacher, who she loves and adores with every part of her. She longs to hug her, and to feel that warmth of touch.
Justineu knows that Melanie is a hungry, one of the flesh-eaters who they've built the walls up to protect themselves from, but Melanie is different. With an IQ of a genius, Melanie is the prodigy of the class.
When the walls go down from a surprise attack of Junkers, those who have decided to blend in with the Hungries instead of barricading themselves away from them, Melanie and Justineu find themselves on the run with two soldiers, Parks and Gallagher, and one of the last remaining scientists from the Base, named Caldwell.
As Justineu deals with her motherly feelings towards Melanie, she must also cope with the fact that when Melanie catches the scent of her sweat, she turns into a hungry monster. Melanie deals with learning that she is a hungry, and learning why is she different.
The Girl is such a peculiar take on the Zombie world and what might happen at the end of the apocalypse. A large amount of zombie novels generally follow the same story, same plot, and don't really stand out from the crowd. The Girl takes the idea of zombies and turns them into these empathetic characters that you want to hug like Justineu but you can't cos you'll probably get eaten, and that's what I absolutely adored about it.
Melanie: I adored her from the absolute start. She's a genius, compassionate, and is so sweet. I am so glad with how things played out for Melanie, and though it may not have ended the way she wanted it to, it was so fantastic.
Caldwell: Ya need to just stahp. STAHP. YOU'RE AN AWFUL PERSON, BUT KIND OF GOOD IN A WAY, BUT STILL...
Justineau: I LOVE YOU. YOU'RE ADORABLE. I AM SO SORRY FOR THE PAIN THAT THE AUTHOR PUT YOU THROUGH. *HUGS YOU TIGHTLY* YOU'RE CUTE. I LOVE YOU.
Gallagher: *Facepalm* You're lucky you're cute, 'cos you make a lot of dumb decisions when under pressure.
- All the characters had their own desires, goals, and perspectives. You could switch the perspective to ANY of the characters, and it would have been an entirely different way of seeing the same novel. None of the characters were 'Two-Dimensional' or there just for the sake of being a plot device.
- The relationship between the characters; Park and Justineau, Justineu and Caldwell, Park and Gallagher, and especially Justineau and Melanie.
- The Cover is absolutely haunting!
- The ending is absolutely intense. I was on the edge of my bed and nibbling my lip the entire time. A frown was very prominent.
Things I Didn't Like:
- Death. I know it's there, and it's always going to happen in apocalyptic novels, but I still despise it and it hurts.
- How short it was :(
I'd rate The Girl a 8.5 out of 10 :)
(Here's my favourite quote!)
“You're my bread," she says at last. "When I'm hungry. I don't mean that I want to eat you, Miss Justineau! I really don't! I'd rather die than do that. I just mean... you fill me up the way the bread does to the man in the song." You make me feel like I don't need anything else.”
― M.R. Carey, The Girl with All the Gifts