Friday, June 5, 2015

[Review] World After by Susan Ee

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World After
Susan Ee
[Penryn & the End of Days #2]
YA, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy
Published: November 2013 (Skyscape)
Format: digital
Pages: 314
Rating: 3.5 of 5
 
In this sequel to the bestselling fantasy thriller, Angelfall, the survivors of the angel apocalypse begin to scrape back together what's left of the modern world.

When a group of people capture Penryn's sister, Paige, thinking she's a monster, the situation ends in a massacre. Paige disappears. Humans are terrified. Mom is heartbroken.

Penryn drives through the streets of San Francisco looking for Paige. Why are the streets so empty? Where is everybody? Her search leads her into the heart of the angels' secret plans where she catches a glimpse of their motivations, and learns the horrifying extent to which the angels are willing to go.

Meanwhile, Raffe hunts for his wings. Without them, he can't rejoin the angels, can't take his rightful place as one of their leaders. When faced with recapturing his wings or helping Penryn survive, which will he choose?

Warning: Spoilers ahead! Advert eyes!

So, after blazing through Angelfall I picked up World After. To me, this book falls into the category that a lot of second books in trilogies do. It is used as filler, with bits happening up until the end result that will eventually lead into the third book. And I get it. I don't seem to mind so much as other people do when a book is used to set up the next one. This results in the plot being slower than the previous book. The action packed parts are around the end of the book, well past the 50% mark. I am all for a slow build up, so this is not considered a weakness for me.

The suspense of Raffe not being around was also killing me.

Penryn had plenty of time in this book to find herself and learn some new things about the Raffe's sword. There were a few cop out parts, such as dream training but it gets by since the sword has a conscious and abilities without Penryn having to do anything. Otherwise, Penryn herself doesn't change all that much. She has a few moments of "maybe I should save humanity and not just my family" but it's not long before she's back to saving her family foremost. Once he reappears, Raffe is the same stubborn and selfish guy he was before. His standoffish attitude is fun to read. I almost wish that the love that is inevitably going to take a hold of him wasn't around. It seems so off for the character the author is trying to go for. Especially after a millennium of telling himself to never fall for one. It was basically, "give him a few days with a human, he'll break," and I find this unrealistic.

The thing I didn't like about World End is that the basic building blocks of the book are structured the same as the previous book. A lot of parallels happen. Even with this, though, the book still makes for a good read with enough differences that it's not that big of a deal.

The world building wasn't as high end as it could have been, but at some point I believe I can imagine it quite clearly, if only for the reason that the destruction is laid out well and I have previous knowledge of what California looks like. Still, it is better than in Angelfall, so I count it as a bonus.

And once again, I still feel that the writing is drab. I will reiterate myself and say that is my personal choice and not the author's fault.

Overall, I enjoyed everything this book was dishing out. The characters are still fabulous and the plot itself is interesting. The side dish of love is happening and...well, it's happening, whether I like it or not. When I think about it without thinking about it (whatever that means), I like it and that's enough for me.

TL;DR

Good:
+ Build up and suspense
+ Good setup for last book
+ Characters are still great!
+ Love is not main focus
+ World building

Bad:
- Love is sorta unrealistic
- Writing is ehh

Final Rating: 3.5 of 5