Thursday, March 10, 2011
Personal Favorites: The Dead and the Gone
Alex lived in New York City. He didn't know anything about an asteroid that was supposed to be hitting the moon, and even if he'd heard about it, he was too busy with work and school to pay much attention. Even after things started to go sour, it took him awhile to piece together what had happened. Instead, he had was a lot of questions: Was his father OK or had Puerto Rico (where he was visiting for a funeral) really been wiped out by a tsunami? Was his mother stuck at work at the hospital unable to call them, or had she been in the subway when they had flooded? The only thing he knew for sure was that it was up to him to take care of himself and his sisters and that was getting increasingly difficult.
Alex: Alex is smart, and had spent much of his young life making sure that he did his very best at school and in his family, partly because it was expected of him. With his parents gone and his older brother out of contact, he steps up to take care of things, at first hoping that one of them will come back, but later because he knows that it won't be. He is not fond of his youngest sister, finding her spoiled, but he always does his best by her, wanting to make sure that the girls at least have the best life they can given the situations.
Unlike "Life as We Knew It" you often have no clue in this book what is going on in the world, anymore than Alex did as it was happening. Instead, you see what he sees, the results of the problems in the world. Having read the first book I often knew why certain things were happening, but I could see that knowing or not knowing wouldn't have made the story make any less sense (in fact, when I loaned the book to my friend I told her to read this first so we could compare and all it did was make her even more annoyed with Miranda). What Alex goes through and the things that he had to do were a lot darker and sadder than the things that Miranda encountered. It really makes her experience seem pale in comparison. He struggled far more and it was even more amazing that he was able to get through it. Whereas I could see myself surviving in Miranda's case, I'm not sure I would have been as lucky as Alex. I recommend starting with this book if you'd like to see how the story unfolds if you were unable to get constant updates on what was happening. If you want to know every detail of whats going on around the world, read book 1 first.