Book lover. Stephen King Fanatic. Will try anything once. General Lover of Fiction. Reviewer Everywhere. All views my own. Mostly.
Publication Date: 19th Febuary 2015 from Orion
THE NAZARETH ACT HAS COME INTO FORCE
IF YOU CAN'T PRODUCE YOUR IDENTITY CARD, YOU'RE GOING TO BE SHOT.
Lalla, 16, has grown up sheltered from the new reality by her visionary father, Michael Paul. But now the chaos has reached their doorstep. Michael has promised Lalla and her mother that they will escape. Escape is a ship big enough to save 500 people.
BUT ONLY THE WORTHY WILL BE CHOSEN.
Once on board, as day follows identical day, Lalla's unease grows.
Where are they going?
What does her father really want?
Really enjoyed this one - considering the subject matter it was a gentle, rolling and addictive read following Lalla as she embarks on a journey to who knows where, leaving behind a ravaged world. Very much a character driven piece, it really is all about Lalla as she struggles to come to terms with how things are, deal with a devastating loss and work out who she is and what she wants.
I do love a book that gets my blood up and this one did in very clever little ways - Lalla is not entirely likeable, I often wanted to yell at her for being so obtuse, but as things develop, a better understanding of what she is dealing with leads her to become much more sympathetic. Stuck in an environment not of her choosing, there are some very intriguing threads to this tale - is safety always the best thing, when does self preservation become pure selfishness - what, exactly IS worth fighting for? From the santuary of "The Ship" Lalla ponders all this and more and it is captivating throughout.
There are some other absolutely fascinating characters inhabiting her world - the most compelling of which is Lalla's Father Michael. He oozes sainthood from his very pores - but whether or not he is saint or sinner is unclear, seen entirely through the eyes of his daughter, just as you think you have a grip on his motivations everything changes. The other "lucky" folk who managed to get a place are equally puzzling and there is a very "smoke and mirrors" feel to the novel as a whole which makes it absolutely enthralling.
The world building is intelligent, enough background being given to inform the characters choices but not overwhelming the heart of the story which is, as I said, very much all about the people and the choices they make. A very different kind of post apocalyptic tale, for me this was a spot on read that had me fully immersed into the world of "The Ship" and those who sail on her. The author weaves an astute and imaginative web which will give you pause for thought whilst at the same time being highly entertaining and for that reason I would definitely recommend it.
Happy Reading Folks!