Book Review: After The End (After The End #1) By Amy Plum

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Synopsis

She’s searching for answers to her past. They’re hunting her to save their future.

World War III has left the world ravaged by nuclear radiation. A lucky few escaped to the Alaskan wilderness. They’ve survived for the last thirty years by living off the land, being one with nature, and hiding from whoever else might still be out there.

At least, this is what Juneau has been told her entire life. 

When Juneau returns from a hunting trip to discover that everyone in her clan has vanished, she sets off to find them. Leaving the boundaries of their land for the very first time, she learns something horrifying: There never was a war. Cities were never destroyed. The world is intact. Everything was a lie.

Now Juneau is adrift in a modern-day world she never knew existed. But while she’s trying to find a way to rescue her friends and family, someone else is looking for her. Someone who knows the extraordinary truth about the secrets of her past.

Rating: ★★★★

Plot

Juneau and her clan are World War III survivors. Living in the Alaskan wilderness, they are self sufficient and self reliant. They never ever leave the area they live in. They live as one with the nature and that has given them supernatural powers, or the Yara as they call it. One day, on her way back from a hunting trip, Juneau comes back to find that her entire clan has been kidnapped. Juneau knows that it’s up to her to save them so she packs up what she could find and follows their trail.

The she comes across a city and she’s shocked. Her father had told her that the nuclear radiation had destroyed the world but the city standing in front of her looks perfectly fine.

Then my gaze lowers and the world slams to a stop. I manage to keep my knees locked for a moment but then crumple to the ground. I can’t breathe. I can’t think. I can’t do anything but kneel in the snow and look at the impossible.
Beneath me lies a city. It is not in ruins. It isn’t decimated by war and poisoned by radiation. It is a thriving city with massive glass buildings glistening in the late-afternoon sun.

Juneau walks around, looking for signs of the war but finds nothing. She puts 2 and 2 together. World War III didn’t happen and her whole life has been a lie.

He opens his mouth and out spill the words that, since last night, I have suspected were true. “There hasn’t been a World War III,” he says, “knock on wood,” and he raps his knuckle against the park bench.

Juneau soon learns that there are people looking for her. Maybe the same people who took her clan. But that doesn’t mean that she was going to let them catch her. So she disguises herself and sets off on her own journey to finding her clan and the truth, and maybe finding herself too.

Upon reaching her destination, Juneau consults an oracle about what her next steps should be. She is then told that she needs to find someone to go on the journey with her.

The man sits silently for a moment, looking at a space above my head. “You can’t do it alone,” he says finally. “You must find someone to take you on your journey.”

So she goes in search of the person. And she finds Miles, the boy who is the exact opposite of her. She thinks he’s really stupid and incompetent. But she remembers what her oracle told her; she has to tell Miles everything.

“Yes,” responds Frankie. “You must be completely honest with him. Tell him everything he wants to know. But whatever you do, don’t trust him. He needs you as much as you need him.”

Miles thinks she’s completely crazy. What sort of crap is this person sprouting?, he thinks. What Yara? What superpowers? What never aging?

But despite their differences, they know they have to stick together. Juneau, because she has to save her clan and Miles, because he has reasons of his own to accompany her on her journey, and he won’t back away.

Thoughts

After the End has been on my TBR forever. It was also on my June TBR. Picking it up was a miracle on its own because I never follow monthly TBRs but maybe I’m changing! *throws confetti*

This book didn’t disappoint. I was super super super excited it for it and I was not let down! It was unputdownable and I inhaled it in five seconds flat. I was never bored and I laughed and teared up (especially when Juneau had to leave her dogs) and sometimes both at the same time.

I’m not sure if other book people classified this book as coming of age but I believe that it is. Juneau and Miles grow up so much throughout the book. Juneau’s faith in the Yara drastically decreased after she found out that the elders in the clan and her own father have been lying to her all her life. But she knows that her clan depends on her to save them, and so does Miles. So instead of trying to get back the same beliefs she had before, she ploughs her own road to the Yara and becomes even more powerful. Miles’s transition is spectacular. He started out as a spoiled kid who broke rules for his won amusement and by the end he had become someone Juneau couldn’t live without.

Characters

Juneau

This girl is probably one of the strongest characters I’ve ever read about. She has never stepped to the outside world, yet the minute she knew that her clan has been kidnapped she packs her things and goes to rescue them. She is brilliant and smart and there is nothing that she can’t do. I love how sure she is of herself and her abilities. The world needs more people like that.

Miles

Miles is probably the exact opposite of Juneau; he’s rich, been spoon fed all his life, and arrogant. He sets off to find Juneau himself after he hears that his father is searching for her. Miles wants to prove himself to his always-absent father so that he could make him proud. awh 😦 .

Juneau follows what her oracle told her and tells Miles everything and he thinks she’s nuts. Then he starts sympathizing with her because he believes she’s been brainwashed by a bunch of nature loving group. Then, later on, he believes in her and her power so much I can feel a lump in my throat.

Miles himself grows up so much throughout the book. From being a reckless, mindless guy, he becomes a strong young man who believes in himself and others. Someone who doesn’t bulk under responsibility. Someone great and amazing.

Tallie

Tallie is, without a doubt, my absolute fav character in this book. She’s eccentric and witchy, and she believed Juneau since the beginning. Hell, she was actually expecting her. I.just.love.her.so.so.much.

Doubt everything, Juneau. Doubt everything at least once. What you decide to keep, you’ll be able to be confident of. And what you decide to ditch, you will replace with what your instincts tell you is true.

She’s the one who helps Juneau get her faith in her power back. WE OWE YOU SO MUCH TALLIE!

Bottom Line

THIS BOOK IS SO FREAKING AWESOME. I loved it so so much and I wish that the characters are real so I can hug them and keep them close. I ended up hugging my copy just so that all the awesomeness can be transferred to me.

Oh boy was I so glad that I read this book after the second one was out because that ending? HOLY SHIT.

Recommended to: Everyone and anyone who likes awesome books that have a freaking new idea of a supernatural twist.

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