Welcome to my stop on the Ashen Winter Blog Tour, hosted by the amazing Savy @ Books With Bite. Ashen Winter is the second book in the Ashfall series, by the very talented Mike Mullin!
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ABOUT THE BOOK
Title: Ashen Winter
Author: Mike Mullin
Publisher: Tanglewood Press
Publication Date: October 16, 2012
Number of Pages: 576 Pages
It’s been over six months since the eruption of the Yellowstone supervolcano. Alex and Darla have been staying with Alex’s relatives, trying to cope with the new reality of the primitive world so vividly portrayed in Ashfall, the first book in this series. It’s also been six months of waiting for Alex’s parents to return from Iowa. Alex and Darla decide they can wait no longer and must retrace their journey into Iowa to find and bring back Alex’s parents to the tenuous safety of Illinois. But the landscape they cross is even more perilous than before, with life-and-death battles for food and power between the remaining communities. When the unthinkable happens, Alex must find new reserves of strength and determination to survive.
Ashen Winter is another emotional superb story from the outstanding talent that is Mike Mullin. When I read Ashfall last year, I just knew that there is something amazing about it. I loved every second of it, and I could not put it down. Ashen Winter expands the story and it is even more amazing and addicting than Ashfall. I believe that Ashfall and Ashen Winter will always be in my top list of favorite reads. Not an easy feat to accomplish, considering the amount of reading I do. When I read the first two chapters of Ashen Winter, I knew I was hooked. I could not put this book down, no matter what the time of night or how tired. Heck slightly double vision could not stop me from reading to the very last page.
Alex and Darla have really grown up over the course of the series, but I think they did the biggest amount of growing up in Ashen Winter. They faced many trials in the first book, but I think the trails faced in Ashen Winter are even harder. This is because the world is harsher as edible food, medicine, and just staying alive are hard to come by anymore. As they go back over parts of their journey from the first book, Ashfall, Alex and Darla start to learn how bad things have gotten.
Alex is a great main character because he is not perfect, and he makes mistakes. He may make them more often, but he does it trying to protect the ones he cares about most of the time. I really like that even though he is 16, he is intelligent and knowledgeable about surviving to a point. Darla is very independent, and I just love her for it. She takes care of Alex, and keeps him in line. I like the way the two of them care for each other, because they have to rely on each other in the post Yellowstone eruption world. I do not know if I could be as strong as both Alex and Darla, and survive after a major catastrophe.
This is not a lovely, happy story about a boy and his girlfriend setting off to rescue his parents. There are many dangerous people just trying to survive, and doing whatever they want to do it. I believe it is a realistic story about what could possibly happen in the event Yellowstone National Park erupted. That is another reason I love the writing and story style of Mike Mullin. He does not sugar coat the events and encounters a person might have, if the world they had been born into experiences an apocalyptic eruption. I loved Ashen Winter, and I cannot wait to see what Mike Mullin comes up with next.
**Unabridged Bookshelf received this book from the publisher, in exchange for an honest review**
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Mike Mullin’s first job was scraping the gum off the undersides of desks at his high school. From there, things went steadily downhill. He almost got fired by the owner of a bookstore due to his poor taste in earrings. He worked at a place that showed slides of poopy diapers during lunch (it did cut down on the cafeteria budget). The hazing process at the next company included eating live termites raised by the resident entomologist (they taste like a cross between walnuts and carrots), so that didn’t last long either. For a while Mike juggled bottles at a wine shop, sometimes to disastrous effect. Oh, and then there was the job where swarms of wasps occasionally tried to chase him off ladders. So he’s really hoping this writing thing works out.Mike holds a black belt in Songahm Taekwondo. He lives in Indianapolis with his wife and her three cats. Ashfall is his first novel.
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