Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Ashes, Ashes by Jo Treggiari

“The world has ended … What comes next?”

Ninety-nine percent of the world’s population was decimated by the smallpox plague. Then the floods and drought dramatically changed the landscape of New York City that Lucy Holloway loved so much. Now surviving on her own in the wilds of Central Park, Lucy is barely scraping out an existence. When she runs into a pack of wild dogs, Lucy finds a savior in the tree above her. Handsome, smirking Adian helps her climb the tree to safety. Stuck up in the tree for hours, Adian is the first real human interaction she has had in awhile. He tells her about the group of survivors he lives with. Aidan believes the dogs are actually a pack tracking her for the Sweepers and will keep her treed until they arrive. Taking a bloody bandage from her hand, Adian leads the dogs on a wild goose chase so that Lucy can escape.

With Aidan never far from her mind, Lucy goes back to her camp for the night to wait out a storm. Waking up the next morning to an eerie calm, Lucy takes a walk on the beach. She soon notices that the tide is out way too far and realizes that a tsumani is imminent. She races back to her camp, retrieves what she can and runs for the highest point before the wave comes crashing ashore. Lucy barely reaches safety. With her home destroyed, Lucy begins walking uptown and eventually her path leads her to Aidan’s camp.

Looking down at the encampment, Lucy sees other humans for the first time in a long while. She finally spots Aidan and attempts to work up the courage to approach. But before she can, a caravan of vans arrive. She realizes that they are Sweepers out hunting for survivors. Lucy howls like a wolf to warn them and they quickly realize the danger. Putting up a failed fight, she watches in horror as some of the survivors are taken after a struggle. After the vans disappear and the camp attempts to return to normal, Aidan spots Lucy on the hilltop and waves her down.

What will Lucy find when she joins Aidan’s community? Can she fit in back in human society? Whty are the Sweepers still hunting for survivors and what are they doing with them? Will sparks fly between Lucy and Aidan or does his heart belong elsewhere? What happens when Lucy realizes that the Sweepers are looking for her and why?

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