Friday, February 24, 2012


   This is one of those cases where I will say that I read the book so you don't have to.... really, don't read it.  Ashes, by Ilse J. Bick, was dismal, but I doggedly worked my way through its tangles and nonsensical turns just so you don't have to face it. In yet another end-of-the-world scenario, Ashes walks the familiar path of zombie-land, sinking its teeth in a little too graphically, in my opinion, but that isn't my main gripe with the book.
   The story actually had potential at the beginning, with three separate characters being thrown together because of unexpected circumstances. Then, halfway through the story, just when I was beginning to be curious about how their relationships would be resolved, two of the characters disappeared. Fine, that's not unusual, as it is a good way for tension to be raised, but one usually expects some resolution at the end of the story. In this case, though, the story completely shifted gears, and headed deep into Biblical lands, which is also not unusual for end-of-the-world books, but some handle the theme better than others. This one was simply disturbing, and poorly constructed, not to mention hard to follow.
   The end of the book took another twist, again, unrelated to the two previous paths, and finally stumbled to a finish that actually hurt to read... so don't. Just don't.

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