Thursday, October 23, 2014

Book review: "Z for Zachariah" by Robert C. O'Brien

Imagine that nuclear holocaust has brought death to the planet. You are as far as you know the lone survivor. You grow your own food, cut firewood for heat and get water from a well. You do what you have to do to survive.

Oh, and by the way, you're only 15 years old.

In "Z for Zachariah," author Robert C. O'Brien takes this simple premise and spins a chilling, page-turning tale.

At the heart of the book is Ann Burden, who turns 16 during the story, left alone in an isolated farming valley. She's amazingly competent all the chores of surviving planting crops, handling livestock, running a tractor. You can't help wondering: Would I do as well? Without YouTube, how would I ever learn how to milk a cow?

Then one day, Ann learns that she is not alone. A man dressed in a radiation-protective suit walks into the Valley. Is he friendly, or a threat? Anne is cautious, but when the man mistakenly bathes in a radiation-tainted river and gets sick, the decision is forced upon her. She must help him.

It's hard to say much more without giving away a lot of the plot, but let's just say that there's drama. I was so absorbed as it reached the end, I was zipping through pages.

O'Brien tells the story in the voice of a teenage girl, using such a spare, simple language that it's disarming. This is a good read for young teens and adults.

If you want more details on the book including spoilers read my version that gives away much of the story.

 (Please support this blog by clicking on an ad, or by donating via the Paypal button below.)


No comments:

Post a Comment