Yipes! To my whole week, yipes! My house was broken into this week and my computer was stolen. The cats and I are fine and the burglar(s) was very considerate with very little taken and very little damage. Then my boss took me out for a belated birthday lunch and I got food poisoning. Does that seem like a kind thing to have happened? I’m watching over my shoulder for the 3rd thing to hit and hoping it’s gentle.
In the not gentle category, I got around to the second book in the Chaos Walking series, The Ask and the Answer. I complained about the cliffhanger ending for the first book, but Ness earned it in this one. By the time I finally started it, the book was due back to the library in a couple of days, so I thought I’d start it and see if it was worth renewing. I think I finished it in a few straight hours and would have loved to have the third, Monsters of Men, on hand to keep reading.
If you’ve forgotten the first one, The Knife of Never Letting Go Todd lives in a place where there are no women and everyone’s thoughts are audible. He’s the only boy left who hasn’t gone through a ritual to become a man and his guardians are determined to get him out of the village before that day comes. He meets a girl in the forest, a survivor from a spaceship sent to scout the area for colonization, and they set off together to save both of their lives. They’re trying to reach a town that might not even be real, but it’s their only hope of safety.
Todd (who still speaks phonetically and that still bugs me, but much less this round) and Viola are prisoners of the place they hoped would be safe haven. Todd is held in a bell tower by the Mayor of his former hometown, who wants him to join in the new regime. Viola is across town in a healer house, with no way to contact Todd or the ships bringing more of her people to the area. Forced into opposite sides of the battle for control, they never lose their connection to each other, even when their faith is shaken. The world of The Ask and The Answer is in constant flux, where allies and enemies aren’t and nobody can be completely trusted. Everyone has an agenda, including Todd and Viola, and the only way to win is to risk everything.
That last part sounded so much like the back blurb for a romance novel that I made myself laugh. I’ve noticed that when I like a book, I turn all earnest reviewer. “You simply must read it, Edith. It’s a thrill-a-minute joy-ride with real-world consequences.” So go to it, Edith. Start reading.