World War III has left the world ravaged by nuclear radiation. A lucky few escaped to the Alaskan wilderness. They’ve survived for the last thirty years by living off the land, being one with nature, and hiding from whoever else might still be out there.
At least, this is what Juneau has been told her entire life.
When Juneau returns from a hunting trip to discover that everyone in her clan has vanished, she sets off to find them. Leaving the boundaries of their land for the very first time, she learns something horrifying: There never was a war. Cities were never destroyed. The world is intact. Everything was a lie.
Now Juneau is adrift in a modern-day world she never knew existed. But while she’s trying to find a way to rescue her friends and family, someone else is looking for her. Someone who knows the extraordinary truth about the secrets of her past.
With so many dystopian and post-apocalytpic novels filling the YA shelves these days, it’s refreshing to see Plum’s twist on the theme in a book that is hardly apocalyptic, but does offer certain twists on dystopian-esque themes. Plum mixes in elements of magic and the paranormal, creating an unexpected blend of genres that is fun to read as each element unfolds.
After the End requires a certain suspension of disbelief – especially as Juneau discovers the modern world, and accepts new technology and vocabulary sometimes a little too easily. But then, we’d have a very boring novel if we spent adequate time letting Juneau learn, adapt, and understand the modern world that is so foreign to her. But if you can suspend your disbelief, and hop along for the very wild ride, you’ll be in for a treat.
Plum packs in plenty of fast-paced action throughout the book, making it hard to put down After the End — but she mixes in plenty of romance, magic, and character development along the way. Perhaps the biggest disappointment is that by the book’s end, so much is left unanswered. True, this is the first in a new series, and I expect plenty more to be revealed in later books — but it would have been nice to have had a little more reward at the end of this first installment.
After the End is in stores May 6th.