Feb 10, 2012

The Dead and the Gone by Susan Beth Pfeffer review

Susan Beth Pfeffer’s Life as We Knew It enthralled and devastated readers with its brutal but hopeful look at an apocalyptic event--an asteroid hitting the moon, setting off a tailspin of horrific climate changes. Now this harrowing companion novel examines the same events as they unfold in New York City, revealed through the eyes of seventeen-year-old Puerto Rican Alex Morales. When Alex's parents disappear in the aftermath of tidal waves, he must care for his two younger sisters, even as Manhattan becomes a deadly wasteland, and food and aid dwindle.

With haunting themes of family, faith, personal change, and courage, this powerful new novel explores how a young man takes on unimaginable responsibilities.

From Goodreads

Alex Morales & his two younger sisters find themselves in the same alternate realtiy as Miranda from Life as We Know It when an asteroid throws the moon out of proper synchronization with the Earth. Unfortunately for the Morales family, they were not nearly as lucky to be spared direct devastation to their family unit. Just kids in the Big Apple, they manage to scrape by with luck, determination & faith.

Alex is an unwilling hero in this story. Charged with being the "man of the house" with his father in Puerto Rico & his older brother serving in the Marines, he finds himself the person his younger sisters are looking to when it becomes obvious that their family is not coming back for them. While he may be ill-tempered & sharp-tongued he is also resourceful & protective. He does what he believes to be best for his sisters, even if it's not the easiest task.

What really made this book stand out from the first is the fact that we were in a completely different part of the United States & so we get to see a whole new facet to the living nightmare that everyone is facing. Trapped in a large metropolitan area might seem like the ideal place during an apocalyptic event, but the Morales family soon discovers that the opposite is actually true.

While you don't have to read the first book to understand the second, it is best to read it before you move on to the third installment as there is some crossover that won't make any sense without having read the first book. If you're looking for something spine-tingling, well-written & filled with dynamic characters, then you've found your calling. Enjoy!

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