Weekly Wrap Up: September 30th through October 6th 2018

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Books I’ve Read (clicking on the picture will bring you to Goodreads page):

The Forbidden Door (Jane Hawk, #4)

The Christmas Star (Christmas Hope #9)

America's Sweetheart (Real Love, #5)

The Wartime Sisters

First Earl I See Tonight (Debutante Diaries, #1)

Rough & Ready (Lightning, #3)

After the Fire

Books with reviews pending (clicking on pictures will bring you to the Amazon page):’

The Wartime Sisters—review coming January 22nd, 2019

The Wartime Sisters

First Earl I See Tonight—review coming November 2nd, 2018

First Earl I See Tonight (Debutante Diaries, #1)

Rough & Ready—review coming October 16th, 2018

Rough & Ready (Lightning, #3)

After the Fire—review coming October 1st, 2018

After the Fire

The Rain Watcher—review coming October 23rd, 2018

The Rain Watcher

Books with published reviews (clicking on pictures will bring you to the Amazon page):

America’s Sweetheart—review here

America's Sweetheart (Real Love, #5)

In the Mood Fur Love—review here

In the Mood Fur Love

The Dream Daughter—review here

The Dream Daughter

After the Fire—review here

After the Fire

NetGalley Haul(clicking on the picture will bring you to the Goodreads page):

Black Diamond Fall

In the Blink of an Eye

Big Stick: An Aces Hockey Novel

Email Haul (clicking on the picture will bring you to the Goodreads page):

Weekly Posts:

Weekly Wrap Up

Freebie Sunday

Music Monday

WWW Wednesday

Throwback Thursday

Foodie Friday

 

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After the Fire by Will Hill

After the Fire

4 Stars

Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire

Date of publication: October 1st, 2018

Genre: Young Adult, Thriller

Where you can find After the Fire: Amazon | Barnes and Noble

Goodreads synopsis:

The things I’ve seen are burned into me, like scars that refuse to fade.

Before, she lived inside the fence. Before, she was never allowed to leave the property, never allowed to talk to Outsiders, never allowed to speak her mind. Because Father John controlled everything—and Father John liked rules. Disobeying Father John came with terrible consequences.

But there are lies behind Father John’s words. Outside, there are different truths.

Then came the fire.


My Review:

When I started reading After the Fire, I was thinking that this was going to be a run of the mill Young Adult book. You know, a book where the plucky heroine saves the day. She solves the mystery and gets the bad guy. When I started reading After the Fire last night, I thought that I would get to 30-40% before going to sleep. Yeah, that didn’t happen. Instead, I was up until almost 12am, devouring this book. I got emotionally invested. I needed to find out what lead up to the fire. I needed to know what would happen to Moonbeam.

After the Fire is Moonbeam’s story. Moonbeam is a survivor of a raid on her cult’s compound. Unlike the other children that were saved, she has secrets. Secrets that eat away at her soul. Secrets that need to come out. Recovering from the raid at a children’s psychiatric hospital, Moonbeam must tell what life was like inside the compound. She also needs to tell them the events that led up to the raid. But can she? Can she overcome everything that has been beaten into her? Or will Father John’s hold on her extend into this new life?

I wasn’t a fan of how the book was broken up at first. There was Before the fire and After the fire. Before detailed how life was at the compound. How Father John and his Centurions dealt out savage punishments. How everyone walked on eggshells because they didn’t want to be the next one in the box. It was a frightening and oppressive existence. After detailed, Moonbeam’s time in the hospital, recovering from wounds attained in the raid. But more importantly, she is being helped mentally to adjust to being Outside. They also want her to tell them about what led up to the raid and what happened when she went into The Big House while it was going on. Like I said earlier, I wasn’t a huge fan of it at first but as I read the book, I realized that there was a flow to the book. All Before scenes were told in therapy sessions. After I realized that, the book flowed nicely for me.

The characters in this book were layered. I like that in a character. I like being able to peel back the layers to see what made that character up. Take Luke for instance. When he is introduced, I thought that he was an innocent victim. But as the book went on and more of Luke’s personality was revealed, I realized that he had been 100% indoctrinated. That began when Father John took over. By the end of the book, I felt bad for him. Even though he did some atrocious things Before and After, he was still a child that had been abused.

I despised Father John. He was the epitome of evil. He took child brides (which disgusted me). He turned Luke into a fanatic that about flipped his wig when he wasn’t accepted into being a Centurion. I thought he got what was coming to him during the fire.

The secondary characters made this book what it was. They were very well-developed. I will say that I was upset with what happened to Nate. I actually groaned and said “Nooooo” when it was revealed what happened.

The end of the book filled me with hope. The author did a great job of wrapping up all the storylines. He did a fantastic job at letting the reader know that deprogramming from a cult takes months, not weeks. He showed me that those kids could go on to live normal lives. But most of all, he showed me what happened to Moonbeam. The afterword was worth the read.

What I liked about After the Fire:

  1. Not your typical YA book
  2. Layered characters
  3. The end of the book

What I disliked about After the Fire:

  1. How the book was broken up at first
  2. Luke (even though I pitied him)
  3. Father John

I gave After the Fire a 4-star rating. This is not your typical YA book and I liked that. It had layered characters (main and secondary). I loved the end of the book. What I disliked about the book didn’t have a huge impact on my rating. They were personal feelings. I didn’t like how the book was broken up when I started reading it. I didn’t like Luke or Father John.

I would give After the Fire an Older Teen rating. There is no sex. There is language. There is violence. The scene of the raid and of a man being almost starved to death in a box can be triggers. I would recommend this book to anyone over the age of 16.

I would reread After the Fire. I would also recommend it to family and friends.

I would like to thank Sourcebooks Fire and NetGalley for allowing me to read and review After the Fire.

All opinions stated in this review of After the Fire are mine.

**I chose to leave this review after reading an advance reader copy**

WWW Wednesday: September 26th 2018

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WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Sam at Taking on a World of Wars. So here what I have read/are reading/will be reading.

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


What’s going on with me this past week:

Nothing much. All is good with my family. Readingwise, I have fallen slightly behind on my reviews. Nothing that couldn’t be fixed by doing some reviews over the weekend. Another reason I have fallen behind…I forgot that I had blog tours. So, I had to rearrange my schedule to get those down asap.


What I am currently reading:

A True Cowboy Christmas (Cold River Ranch, #1)

click on the picture for Amazon link


What I finished reading:

The Hangman's Secret (Victorian Mystery, #3)

 

Click on the picture for Amazon link


What I am reading next (click on the pictures for Amazon links):

The Rain WatcherAfter the FireRough & Ready (Lightning, #3)First Earl I See Tonight (Debutante Diaries, #1)The Wartime SistersAmerica's Sweetheart (Real Love, #5)The Christmas Star (Christmas Hope #9)The Forbidden Door (Jane Hawk, #4)


So that’s it. Be on the lookout for the reviews of all these books in the near future.

Have you read any of these books?

Let me know what you thought of them!!

Weekly Wrap Up: September 16th through September 22nd

Books I’ve Read (clicking on the picture will bring you to Goodreads page):

Mr. Nice Guy

The Christmas Wishing Tree (Eternity Springs, #15)

Bright Ruin (Dark Gifts #3)

Our Life in the Forest

Swagger (Milwaukee Dragons, #2)

 

Christmas on Mistletoe Lane

I Hate You, I Love You

Books I’ve Reviewed (clicking on pictures will bring you to the Amazon page):

Bright Ruin—review coming October 9th, 2018

Bright Ruin (Dark Gifts #3)

Our Life in the Forest—review coming October 25th, 2018

Our Life in the Forest

Swagger—review here

Swagger (Milwaukee Dragons, #2)

Christmas on Mistletoe Lane—review coming September 25th, 2018

Christmas on Mistletoe Lane

I Hate You, I Love You—review coming October 9th, 2018

I Hate You, I Love You

In the Mood Fur Love—review coming October 2nd

In the Mood Fur Love

NetGalley Haul(clicking on the picture will bring you to the Goodreads page):

After the Fire

Dragonfire (Dark Kings, #14)

The Good, the Bad, and the Duke (The Cavensham Heiresses #4)

Email Request (clicking on the picture will bring you to the Goodreads page):

Lakes of Mars

Exposed Fury

Dragon's Shadow

An Unlikely Setup (Welcome to Otter Tail Book 1)

Weekly Posts:

Weekly Wrap Up

Music Monday

WWW Wednesday

Throwback Thursday

Foodie Friday

Freebie Sunday