Getting to read the second part of a series is always exciting. To see what has happened to the characters you have grown to know over the course of the first book is a tense moment.
Were your expectations met, did they do what you thought? There’s the possibility that things might not have turned out how you expected or hoped. The action might have gone off in a different direction. In some cases, there is a period of consolidation, others race ahead.
Which one is this?
Chantelle Atkins is an author whose work I’m growing to love.
Part one was an amazingly strong piece about the collapse of society as we know it and the emergence of a new social order, in which children are the dominant force. The survivors split into groups, all of them are organised in different ways but they all share the same goal. To survive.
You can find more of my thoughts on part two at the end of this post.
Here’s the description,
The adults are all dead. Society has collapsed.
Two groups of teenagers are locked in a territorial war over resources while the very land under their feet seems keen to devour them…
Reuben believes the animals are trying to tell them something, while headstrong Gus is sticking to ‘kill or be killed’. And as tensions continue to rise, both sides resort to spying on the enemies for information.
When Grace is sent into town she discovers a new, larger and far more powerful group is emerging with it’s own agenda which could spell disaster for the warring tribes of Heron Village.
And as the brutal summer draws to an end, the relief of rain is short-lived when storms and floods become an even bigger threat to survival…
About the Author.
Chantelle Atkins was born and raised in Dorset, England and still resides there now with her husband, four children and multiple pets. She is addicted to reading, writing and music and writes for both the young adult and adult genres. Her fiction is described as gritty, edgy and compelling.
Her debut Young Adult novel The Mess Of Me deals with eating disorders, self-harm, fractured families and first love.
Her second novel, The Boy With The Thorn In His Side follows the musical journey of a young boy attempting to escape his brutal home life and has now been developed into a 5 book series.
She is also the author of This Is Nowhere and award-winning dystopian, The Tree Of Rebels, plus a collection of short stories related to her novels called Bird People and Other Stories.
The award-winning Elliot Pie’s Guide To Human Nature was released in October 2018.
YA novel A Song For Bill Robinson was released in December 2019 and is the first in a trilogy, followed by Emily’s Baby and The Search For Summer in 2021.
In 2022 she released another collection: The Old Friend – A Collection of Tales and Poems and the first in the supernatural YA series, Hangman’s Revenge, which was co-written with Sim Alec Sansford.
Chantelle has had multiple articles about writing published by Author’s Publish magazine and runs her own Community Interest Company – Chasing Driftwood Writing Group.
Website/blog : https://chantelleatkins.com/
Email Newsletter Sign Up: http://eepurl.com/bVVbGD
The Mess Of Me
The Boy With The Thorn In His Side – series
Bird People and Other Stories
This Is Nowhere
The Tree Of Rebels
Elliot Pie’s Guide To Human Nature
A Song For Bill Robinson
The Search For Summer
The Old Friend – A Collection of Tales and Poems
The Day The Earth Turned – series
More of my thoughts.
At the end of part one, Gus, one of the leaders, was in trouble.
No spoilers here but right from the first page, the narrative doesn’t hang about. Gus’s immediate situation is resolved. His enemies are involved in this, which forces a shift in the dynamic between the groups.
Meanwhile, life carries on. The groups try to solve their problems as they prepare for winter, in the face of worsening weather.
It’s been quite clear that nature, in the form of flora and fauna, will have a part to play in this story and now, their presence starts to come to the fore. As before, we get chapters written from the animal’s point of view, these add a fascinating and realistic balance to the narrative.
In beautifully descriptive prose, the natural world’s increasing influence on the survivors is felt. The clever thing is that the writer gives each of the main players a different view of things, depending on what sort of a leader they are.
All that would be enough to sustain the narrative as it stands, the question of whether and how the groups can unite against the forces of the planet would make for an exciting story on its own.
But that isn’t enough for this author. We have a third group of survivors, only hinted at in part one, who now take up a more central role and provide a threat to both of the sides we are familiar with.
The book draws a parallel with the society it replaces, as the groups are already descending into the politics of the old order, with spying, disinformation and coercion employed by each as they battle to stay one step ahead of problems caused by changes in the natural world.
I’m struggling to avoid giving you too much information, let’s just say that you need to read this. Personally, I can’t wait for part three.
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