Tuesday, 12 April 2016

Dn't let the sun shine down on me...

Greg Zimmerman's Queen of Bones is best described as a refreshing new take on the usual post-apocalyptic/ dystopian fare that has kind of saturated the market in recent years. Set in a indiscriminate near future - it could be tomorrow, next week, next month, who knows? - the novel takes a very plausible and credible threat - Solar storms that regularly scorch the planet with their ferocity - and throws into the mix a feisty, young female lead, through whose eyes the reader witnesses events as they continue to unfold.
Sara is a born survivor - suffering from crippling arthritis, she kind of has to be - but it is this very affliction that makes her so valuable - her arthritis acting as an early warning system whenever another solar flare is due, hence providing her and whoever is with her ample time to try and find some cover.
Constantly on the move, Sara is trying to make it to Seattle where she has heard some kind of civilisation is attempting to be rebuilt, but before she gets there, there are a hell of a lot of miles between her and Seattle and these are dangerous times.
Along her travels, Sara will have to keep her wits about her and employ every trick in her arsenal if she wants to survive...
Having received a copy of this book in exchange for review, and having read a lot of positive and good things about this book already, I was kind of expecting to be left feeling underwhelmed - expecting it to be a case of the book not being able to match up with all the hype - but I am pleased to report I was pleasantly surprised.
Zimmerman here has attempted to do something very different and does so by giving us a hero who, by rights, normally, most people would no doubt expect to be at a disadvantage in the event of an apocalypse - only to then surprise us by cleverly turning everything about quickly on its head. Sara, the main character, is about as unconventional as you can get and Zimmerman does a great job of telling the story through her eyes to the point that, reading this, I almost fancied I could hear her telling me the story as each part of it happened.

By avoiding many of the usual tropes and attempting to do something a little different, Zimmerman has taken a bit of a risk and created a very clever and unique novel that fully deserves to be a resounding and outstanding success.
Reminiscent in places of Cormack McCarthy's The Road, Queen of Bones is a much more positive and uplifting read and one I can fully recommend...

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