Friday, November 13, 2015

Book Review- "Not on Fire but Burning" by Greg Hrbek

I have feelings about this book and I'm not sure what they exactly are. If you read this and feel similarly I'd love to hear from you!

Here's the goodreads summary, who summarize it better than I could have:

Twenty-year-old Skyler saw the incident out her window: Some sort of metalic object hovering over the Golden Gate Bridge just before it collapsed and a mushroom cloud lifted above the city. Like everyone, she ran, but she couldn't outrun the radiation, with her last thoughts being of her beloved baby brother, Dorian, safe in her distant family home.

Flash forward to a post-incident America, where the country has been broken up into territories and Muslims have been herded onto the old Indian reservations in the west, even though no one has determined who set off the explosion that destroyed San Francisco. Twelve-year old Dorian dreams about killing Muslims and about his sister—even though Dorian's parents insist Skyler never existed. Are they still shell-shocked, trying to put the past behind them . . . or is something more sinister going on?

Meanwhile, across the street, Dorian's neighbor adopts a Muslim orphan from the territories. It will set off a series of increasingly terrifying incidents that will lead to either tragedy or redemption for Dorian, as he struggles to prove that his sister existed—and was killed by a terrorist attack

When I heard about this book I knew immediately that this was something I needed to get my hands on. I...I was kind of disappointed. I loved the idea. And the characters were super relatable. And I sincerely hope that our future is not like the one that was portrayed, though I enjoyed seeing how it was portrayed in such a realistic way.

I wouldn't say this is a spoiler, but the book starts pretty "normally" formatted and linear (it jumps between characters and time periods but nothing strange) but then as the book goes on, especially closer to the very end the book stops being as linear. That made me sad. I don't generally need a book to be all tied up neatly and have all of my questions answered, but I like a little bit of a stronger finish then what this book offered me.

I'm honestly at a loss with this one. I like the idea and I liked the characters and the stories. I even liked the writing. But it kind of lost me at the end, at the bums me out. I will do what I always do when this happens with me and a book. Decide which ending I like best and go with that. Hooray! Problem solved. So Ill say 3.5 for most of it and then 2.5 for the ending.


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