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Book Review

Publisher's Note:

Under the bubbling hot springs and geysers of Yellowstone National Park is a supervolcano. Most people don't know it's there. The caldera is so large that it can only be seen from a plane or satellite. It just could be overdue for an eruption, which would change the landscape and climate of our planet. For Alex, being left alone for the weekend means having the freedom to play computer games an…


by Mike Mullin

Overall Book Review:

Ashfall was a novel with many great qualities and many shortcomings.  It was a well-written post-apocalyptic survival novel.  When reading it the reader can sincerely appreciate the disaster the characters are experiencing and believe the methods necessary to survive it.  The sense of doom and despair is prevalent throughout the book and weighs heavily upon the conscious of the reader.  However,  I didn’t find the main characters to be particularly exciting or engaging.  This may have contributed to the shortcomings in the novel’s romance, which started out intriguing, but ended up feeling more like a marketing ploy to attract teenage readers and less focused on the main plot of how the characters survive.  Despite this, Ashfall is a good read for those searching for the next apocalypse and how to survive it.

Content Analysis:

Profanity/Language: 14 religious exclamations; 25 mild obscenities; 9 religious profanities; 4 deragatory names; and 8 anatomical terms.

Violence/Gore: Several threats; a characters gets in several fights involving axes, knives, guns, fists, and sticks  which result in severe injury or death, with details of splattering blood and graphic wounds to the chest and face.  Several characters are shot to death, with graphic details of heads exploding.  A house is destroyed, but there are no casualties.

Sex/Nudity:  Charaters kiss, caress each other, and cuddle; characters have mature discussions about sex, mentally and verbally.  A character gets “a hard one”.  A male character touches a female character’s breasts on 3 occasions.  Characters (one over the age of 18 and one under the age of 18) do have sex, with no descriptions.  Characters do make out and have very aggressive intimate moments.  There is a scene of rape, without graphic details.

Mature Subject Matter:

Loss of family, loss of home, survival, rape, love, virginity.

Alcohol / Drug Use:

A character drinks alcohol for medical purposes.

Overall Book Rating

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About the Reviewer

I enjoy reading adventure books like Gary Paulsen’s The Hatchet, probably because I like to lead an active life. Outside of reading, I camp, hike, run cross country and work on a farm, and a lot of these experiences let me appreciate the content of a good book, as well as the unlimited possibilities that can happen between its covers.