Where I was feeling that perhaps after book two of this series I was going to let it go, I couldn’t without finding out what happens to the kids trapped in the FAYZ (Fallout Alley Youth Zone). I’m glad that I didn’t stop reading the series. This book surpassed book two by a mile…but man, did it get dark.
I literally cannot talk about nearly any aspect of the plot without spoiling things from books one and two…I’ve tried three times to write this review, but I’ll try my best. In book one, all the adults popped out of existence leaving only children fourteen and younger. Some of those kids developed powers and the entire book focused on a battle between two factions of kids. By the end of the book we knew that there was also something evil at play (besides human nature).
At the end of book two, we were lead to believe that this force had been dealt with, it’s clearly not the case (and since I knew it was a five or six book series, I expected as much). So picking up with the third book, we learn that the evil is harnessing the kids’ power for its own purposes (those purposes are still unknown). The kids must fight their own to survive as they are pitted against one another–this time it’s not a turf war or an attempt to control supplies–this time it’s strictly about good versus evil–but evil is burrowed within friends and allies (due to no fault of their own). A prophetess has arisen amongst the kids who is telling the kids that beyond the wall, their parents are waiting for them…if they just let go. Is death in the FAYZ a final death or is it truly a release back into the “real world”? Is the prophetess genuine or is she a pawn for the evil gaiaphage?
I don’t have the answers yet, but I wouldn’t tell you if I did. This is a pretty great series as a whole so far. Each of the books have had missteps in terms of pacing and characterization but at this point, I feel like these are minor quibbles as I continue through it. Time and the series end will tell if I’m correct in this assessment.
Again, only proceed if you can handle really dark, particularly dark when you realize that kids are the ones doing these things. The kids’ situation food situation is getting more dire, stakes are getting higher and the kids are becoming less reluctant to do what must be done to survive.