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3.9 out of 5
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  • Character Driven Retelling

    This was not what I was expecting! Christina Henry has always added a unique take on retellings, even dark ones, but this was not something I anticipated. Firstly, there's no wolf in a traditional sense, and while there is a slight supernatural element, there is next to no magic. It's the story of a girl seeking shelter and fighting against literally all odds. And I loved it! I was completely enthralled throughout. This was partly helped with the consistent tension that filled the pages. Even in "quiet" moments, I was always worried about what would happen next. While there are certainly fights, they never last longer than a few paragraphs. They are quick, brutal, and really drive home the misery of the world. As said before, the lack of action leaves way for stellar character building and relationships. There is no romance, but the drama between Red and her family, as well as the adorable children lifted and lowered my heart. I truly loved every aspect, and Henry's incredible writing kept my eyes glued to the page. Red herself is a complex character with an excellent arc, and one thing that wasn't highlighted in the blurb was her disability, which added both drama and tension to the already atmospheric book. I also have a soft spot in my heart for Sam and Riley, as well as a couple other side characters scattered throughout. This might not have been the exact retelling I had expected, but as with all of Christina Henry's books, was a memorable and emotional journey. I truly can't wait for her next book!

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  • A different kind of Red!

    I liked this book a lot! I really had no idea that this book would be a post-apocalyptic story but I couldn't have been happier about that fact once I started reading. I see now that little fact would have been obvious if I had read the book's summary before diving in but I like to go into books as blinding as I can so I can be surprised. It worked well in this case. Once I started reading, I was completely taken with Red as she fought to survive in a terrifying world. I really had a fantastic time with this book! There is a virus, known as the Cough, that is wiping out much of the population. Red's family is safe but they don't know how much longer things will stay that way. They decide that the best course of action is to travel by foot to Grandma's house since she is pretty isolated. Red is prepared and ready for the challenge. Her parents and brother are not nearly as eager to start the journey. Red is an amazing character. She lost her leg in an accident when she was younger and now uses a prosthetic leg. Others often see her as disabled or crippled but Red knows she is very capable. She is also very aware of how things are different for her. I really liked the way that we got a glimpse into what life would be like with a prosthesis. The way that maintaining balance, dealing with difficult terrain, and fatigue were worked into the story was expertly handled. I also really liked the fact that Red is biracial. Racism does play a part in this story and I hated what Red and her family had to deal with. I really thought that this book was exciting. Just when I thought I knew what was going on, things would happen that made me doubt everything. This book did such a great job of keeping me guessing. I think that the way that the story was laid out worked well. We see things from Red's perspective at the beginning of the crisis and also much later on. I thought that by alternating these two points in time they both seemed just a bit more powerful. I would highly recommend this book to others. This was a thrilling story with an incredibly tough and intelligent heroine. There were lots of twists and turns that kept the pages turning through Red's tragedies and triumphs. I can't wait to read more from Christina Henry! I received a review copy of this book from Berkley Publishing Group.

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