I’m writing this review on Friday night after a week of preparing to go on winter break (I’m a teacher) so my brain is pretty fried. I will say this though, I don’t think that being overworked contributed to my reaction to this book at all. (Spoilers towards the end. Fair warning.)
When it starts you think it’s going to be like The Road by Cormac McCarthy, but before full apocalypse sets in. Then it becomes a story of a changing landscape, where people need only adapt and accept the waterless world in which they live. The ending strips this visage from our eyes and exposes the harsh reality that there is no hope, only restocking, refueling, and retreat.
I don’t think I’m smart enough to understand what this book was about. Well, I take that back. I’m smart enough to understand, but I don’t think I’ve read enough of the books or seen the movies that the author credits as inspirations in her acknowledgements to get the references. Was this book an inside joke? An homage to all these other things she loves? Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery I guess, but I’ll readily admit that I was not part of the club that got it.
I lived in the Southwest for 3 years and I loved it. I still miss it. The beginning of this book is totally a possible future for that area of the country, but then it takes a sharp left turn and never recovers despite its auspicious beginning. I’m upset I didn’t just put it down once I realized that I wasn’t enjoying it. Life is too short to spend time reading books that you don’t enjoy.
Also the book was all about them and this kid Ig and then they just left her with those nomads and drove off into the sunset and one and maybe both of them commit suicide? I’m confused? Was this book about hope in the face of tragic circumstances? About taking risks for the sake of the children? That children are our future? I. WAS. FURIOUS. when they just walked away. OK crazy desert people, you can have this kid that we gave up everything for, bye now!
Ugh. I’m going to have to try her other book Battleborn because this one was an epic fail for me but I do want to give Watkins another chance.