After The Fire - Will Hill
Outsiders are bad and they cannot be trusted. Moonbeam has known this most of her life since it has been drummed into her by Father John and he knows what is right and what is wrong. She has been living inside the Fence since her parents brought her there as a young child. Now she is alone, though part of the bigger community run by a very strict Father John. But she remembers what it was like before he was in charge and she starts to question the way things are. What if HE is wrong? Even just thinking this could get Moonbeam in trouble and she doesn't know who she can trust, who else might be thinking like her.
Then the community is raided by Governments, who they have all been taught to mistrust. The majority of the story takes place in the aftermath, when Moonbeam and some of the other children are being kept in a secure facility as they are interviewed by Doctor Hernandez and Agent Carlyle. Moonbeam struggles to get past the influence of Father John and open up to the two interviewers.
Gradually, through alternating After and Before threads, the story is revealed and it is so much more complex than you can anticipate. The book kept me guessing all along and was full of suspense in both of the story lines. I had so many questions throughout and if anything I had even more as the book progressed.
I got emotional so many times and felt like my poor heart was completely wrung out by the end. I just did not want to put it down! I have recommended this to so many even people even before I had finished it. I have read tons of good books recently but this really has to be one of the best in some time.
I heard the author talk about his book at a recent book festival (see previous post). I was part way through the book and already enjoying it at the time and hearing some background made it even more interesting. Though some of his comments made me slightly nervous about what was going to happen! Getting my copy signed was a bonus.
You need a long drink to keep you going through this book as you won't want to stop for refills. The colour of an Aperol spritz almost matches the cover of my copy. Mix 3 parts prosecco, 2 parts Aperol and 1 part soda in a large glass with lots of ice. A beautiful drink and very refreshing.