This book starts out with a bang. Literally and figuratively. Never a dull moment. The action starts right off, and the rest of the story is just as nicely paced. Not too fast, not to slow with the plot steadily moving and flowing. Ashes would be best for Teen and Young Adult lovers of Action-packed survival stories, but also for anyone just looking for an exciting story.

Alex just wanted to get away from everything for a while, so she headed for the Great Lakes. Then came the “Zap” followed by creepy, brain-washed monster people. With no choice but to run again, Alex brings Ellie, a younger girl with quite an attitude, with her, hoping to survive. Eventually they meet Tom, an Army veteran also stranded by the Zap. Trying to survive the monsters and the cold northern winter, Alex sets on a journey to find everything she’s lost, while trying to find a way to survive. Eventually stuck in a town of survivors, she tries to find a way to escape. Then she realizes the horrific truth of what’s really happening there…

Ashes was a very good book. A great story, the plot keeps a nice speed, so that you’re never waiting too long for the excitement. It was still suspenseful though, the reader is often wondering what choices will be made, and what will happen as a result. I found I really liked Alex. She’s an awesome girl, who never gives up without a fight. I found that she was a very well fleshed-out character with a fairly well explained past. In fact, I think that the author did very well with the almost all the characters, because you really get a feel for them, and they stick to their own personalities, instead of making decisions that don’t fit. So overall, Ashes was a great story, and well put together, making it easy and very enjoyable to read.

— Amber, age 14

About the Book:
Title: Ashes
Author: Ilsa J. Bick
Release Date: 08/2011


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