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Monday, May 16, 2011

(ARC Review) Ashes, Ashes by Jo Treggiari

Author: Jo Treggiari
Source: Publisher
*I received this ARC free of charge in exchange for an honest review*

Reading level: Young Adult
Hardcover: 352 pages
Publisher: Scholastic Press (June 1, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0545255635
ISBN-13: 978-0545255639


Epidemics, floods, droughts--for sixteen-year-old Lucy, the end of the world came and went, taking 99% of the population with it. As the weather continues to rage out of control, and Sweepers clean the streets of plague victims, Lucy survives alone in the wilds of Central Park. But when she's rescued from a pack of hunting dogs by a mysterious boy named Aidan, she reluctantly realizes she can't continue on her own. She joins his band of survivors, yet, a new danger awaits her: the Sweepers are looking for her. There's something special about Lucy, and they will stop at nothing to have her.


With all of the Dystopia books that are being released lately, I wasn't surprised to find another one in my review pile.  I actually put this one behind a few others just so I could get a break from these for a bit.  So when I started reading it, I came at it fresh and ready to jump into the end of the world story.

Ashes, Ashes was not one of my favorite Dystopia books.  I wanted so much more from it.  While I liked the character of Lucy and her strong self of independence, I felt the romance between Lucy and Aidan was less than thrilling.  I never could really figure out Aidan's role with some of the other characters.  While I enjoyed the premise of Sweepers and such, I didn't feel there was enough action and drama to warrant the 341 pages in ARC format.  Some of the scenes were repetitive and some of the characters were confusing.  The character of Grammalie Rose was left unfinished in not knowing if she has secrets that need to be revealed or if she is just grouchy at times.  Del was a nuisance and I couldn't figure out her interest in Aidan and Sammy.  While it is explained a little bit, I wanted a little bit more back story to warrant her affections for them.  Henry was fun and flirty.  I felt Lucy could have had a better chance with him than with Aidan. 

The ending was not one I was really a fan of either.  There were still some things left unanswered.  Plus it didn't feel believable. Without giving away a spoiler, it is hard to write the one thing that could have made the ending better and believable for a follow-up book if one is planned.  THE VIAL! Why does she do what she does with it? Why not hand it to the one person in the camp that can use it? Plus, the book is heavy on narration and not enough dialogue between the characters to keep you engaged in the plot.

Overall, this was just a decent read with many flaws that need to be worked out.  Not one I would reread again, but I might pick up the sequel if there plans to be one just to see if some things plan to be answered further.  


  If the library doesn't have it, don't worry about reading it! 2 STARS



Blogger Shelagh said...

It's a pity that Ashes, Ashes didn't grab you. I saw it on a Waiting On Wednesday post and liked the idea behind it.

But I agree that a book should have a good balance between dialogue and narration, otherwise it's difficult to engage with the story and the characters. And I've never understood authors who don't try to tie up loose ends.

Good review. I may pick this up anyway when it comes out, but probably with my expectations not as high.

The Word Fiend

May 16, 2011 at 1:09 PM  
Blogger Bookish Brunette said...

I was totally looking forward to this one... Dang!

May 16, 2011 at 2:32 PM  
Blogger Sheila (Bookjourney) said...

I dont read a lot of Dystopia but thought this one looked good. Thanks for the review.

May 16, 2011 at 3:00 PM  
Blogger Melissa (My World...in words and pages) said...

Thank you for the review. Sorry it wasn't one that really caught you. I have to say the cover caught my attention though. ;) Thank you!

May 16, 2011 at 6:00 PM  
Blogger Candace said...

I just read this one and really liked it! I actually gave it 5 stars because all the stuff you mentioned didn't bother me. I do get what your saying about some of it though. Like it seems like she would have used the vial for something else. I'm hoping that the author writes a sequel because I really think this is just the beginning. I would like to see more of the country and how it's doing so it would be cool to see them travel a bit.
It didn't have the dystopian feel to it that so many have and was definitely more of a post apocalyptic feel. So I looked at it differently then I would a dystopia.
We can't all love the same books though! Sorry you didn't like it more :(

May 17, 2011 at 9:06 AM  
Blogger CMDoran said...

I agree on your overall take...my review is out NYJB midnight 6/1...

May 26, 2011 at 12:11 PM  

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