Amber Tate believes the worst thing she’ll suffer in life is dealing with the unrequited love she feels for her brother’s best friend, Rylen Fite. She also believes war is something unfortunate that happens places far, far away from her rural Nevada town. She’s wrong on both counts.

When an unknown organization meticulously bombs major cities in the United States and across the globe, a trickle-down effect spreads to remaining towns at an alarming speed—everything from food and water sources to technology and communications are compromised. Without leadership, the nation is split between paralysis and panic, but Amber isn’t one to hide or watch helplessly. She’s determined to put her nursing skills to use, despite the danger, even if it means working alongside the man she can never have.

*Note:  This book was provided to the Book Hookup by the author but that did not in any way influence this review!

I learned two things from reading this book.  First, I’d never last in an apocalyptic world…no showers, rationing food, tainted water, imposed curfews, no electricity, disease, despair…good gosh, I just wouldn’t survive.  And, second, Wendy Higgins has a way with words.  Somehow, she managed to put me right into this new world order that her characters were facing and made me feel like I was actually there.  So much so that I now believe my first point to be true!

I’ve read many post-apocalyptic stories but only a couple that have actually had me watching the world fall into this scary way of life.  In this book, I could feel the sadness, the fear, and the confusion of the characters as they realized that maybe this wasn’t temporary, that maybe they wouldn’t survive this new reality.  It made me want to stock up on water…it made me want to buy granola bars…I felt totally immersed in the lives of these characters.

Book Rating Breakdown
Writing
Characters
Plot
Pacing
General Book Feels
Degree my heart was ripped out
Overall:

And speaking of characters, I loved Amber and Rylen and I will ship them forever.  Rylen is loyal, strong and smart…and, of course, swoonworthy!  Amber is an intelligent girl who’s strength grows as the story progresses.  They definitely face many challenges but I know that this will be a romance of epic proportions in the coming books.  I never thought I’d say this about a story but I’m kind of glad that the romance wasn’t front and center in this book.  Even though I love love, I think that the author’s decision to make the love story secondary (at least in this book) ensures that the reader focuses on what’s happening in the world and realizes that these ordinary people must become heroes in order to survive.  I also have to mention that I loved Amber’s whole family, especially Grandpa’s feisty nature and Tater’s humor.  I’m rooting for these characters and look forward to the adventures they’re yet to have.

So, what’s my bottom line?  This book was a great start to a series that will captivate readers.  This first book sets the stage and I know that there’s more adventure, more scary moments, more sadness, and (fingers crossed) more romance to come.  Add it to your TBR!

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