Friday, March 21, 2014

Review: Wanderers by Susan Kim, Laurence Klavan

Wanderers (Wasteland, #2)
Wanderers (Wasteland #2) by Susan Kim, Laurence Klavan
The Emmy Award-nominee and Edgar Award-winning duo bring readers back to the Wasteland in this thrilling sequel.
Karin Slaughter, bestselling author of Criminal, called Wasteland, "A Lord of the Flies for future generations. An irresistible page-turner."
The former citizens of Prin are running out of time. The Source has been destroyed, so food is scarcer than ever. Tensions are rising…and then an earthquake hits.
So Esther and Caleb hit the road, leading a ragtag caravan. Their destination? A mythical city where they hope to find food and shelter - not to mention a way to make it past age nineteen.
On the way, alliances and romances blossom and fracture. Esther must rally to take charge with the help of a blind guide, Aras. He seems unbelievably cruel, but not everything is as it seems in the Wasteland.…
In this sequel to Wasteland, the stakes are even higher for Esther, Caleb, and the rest of their clan. They're pinning all their hopes on the road...but what if it's the most dangerous place of all?
Publishes in US: March 25th 2014 by HarperTeen
Genre: YA dystopia
Source: Harper Teen via Edelweiss
Series? Wasteland #2

Buy it: Amazon  Barnes & Noble IndieBound Book Depository

Author stalk away: Laurence

    I wanted to read the Wanderers because I enjoyed the first book and wanted to see what became of the village and especially of Ester and Caleb. I didn't remember a whole lot about it but the beginning does  a good job of a short summary without feeling the info dump weight. We quickly got a handle on the characters again and their relation and thoughts about one another. 
   One thing that still bugs me but I got used to was the weird perspective, I guess shifting third person but it seems to focus in a lot and then all of the sudden jump to another person with little to no warning or transition. 
    I liked Caleb in this one, he is the strong type who leads and really thinks about other people and the well being but especially his relationship with Ester. Their little family including the baby from his deceased first wife (they don't live past teen years from something in the water or atmosphere, so family life happens early in this world set-up). 
   Some of the same characters--Joseph and Sakar are in this one as well and we get more of a sense of their character, history and their attachment to our strong, compassionate Ester. She went through so many changes, losses and horrors but she still thinks of others and people look up to her. We also get some new secondary characters or get a character from the first and shine a new light on them where you can't help but admire. 
   There was a lot going on in the romance department and not only for Ester, there was relationships brewing that I would have never speculated and others that were sweet in a way and then almost wrong in others. But all of this was kind of put on the back burner during the day, but when they stop on their journey for the night, they blossom. 
    The bad guys were pretty cruel and I wanted to smack them in the usual fashion, but let me say that they get what's coming to them all in their own ways. There are some betrayals and schemes that they walk into because they don't have much of a choice. But as far as who works against them, Mundreel really took me by surprise but I almost pitied the kids until they took unnecessary measures. 
    There were a few plot developments that I saw coming and almost hoped for but then again its so bittersweet that its hard even in its good news sense. There were some twists that took me by surprise and wasn't at all what I was thinking the story was going to go, but I can also see how it is a good stage for the next book to wrap up some things that are still not tied up. 
   Also, thank goodness, we do get some insight on what happened to the world and water. It actually seems in the realm of possibility which really makes a chill go down my spine. Thanks to Joseph and his inquisitive nature that not only gives a point of reference and someone that isn't the normal in this world but shows Ester's protective nature and that she sees past things that others can't. Which started at a young age with her friendship with Skar. Speaking of whom, I loved how she was developed in this one, and I liked "getting into her head" as much as you can with the shifting narrative, but I loved the growth in her and the confidence that she gains in this book. 
   This book was fast paced and kept my attention but I did feel like a dystopian Game of Thrones where people that I like are killed off, and I could scream. There are a few people that should be safe and then others that we want to be, but Kim and Klavan didn't hold things back. I can see how it helped them in the future to make certain alliances and that I couldn't help but like some of the characters that got more of a feature in romantics as a secondary character because of the deaths. 
    The ending was good but I feel like a lot about Mundreel was rushed and not very well elaborated on, but  I do know that I want to read the book and see what happens with the new struggle of power, and what Ester will do next for her friends, the strays they picked up along the way, and working towards not only survival but a better quality of life. 

Bottom Line: Fast paced account of the group of Prin citizens looking for a better life.

My question to you, my lovely readers:
Do you think you would be a stay put or travel to a promised but not guaranteed other town?
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  1. Oh, this looks like really interesting book. I haven't heard about this series before, so thank you for sharing.

    It's hard to think about things like that when you are not really there - I'd like to say that I'd take a risk and travel, but I'm kind of person who doesn't take risky decisions that easy. It would take me a while before I'd take a chance and go.

    1. It would be a really hard choice.
      Its a dark series, but I am enjoying

  2. Oh gosh, between the shifting pov and the death of beloved characters, this seems like an interesting read. I'm glad you liked it!

    1. It was interesting, but hard on my heart

  3. Heh I have read so many books in so many different genres from YA to Adult that shifting POV's and different perspectives don't seem to bother me anymore. The only one I seem to have trouble with is actually when there is more then 2 POV's, I just get confused.
    But sounds like a wonderful yet emotional read :(

    Sorry for the delay in comments, been a long few weeks.

    1. I think it was more the transitions that gave me a problem.
      I totally understand girl, no worries

  4. I wasn't inclined to continue this series. I was disappointed in the world building and lack of explanation as far as what happened to the adults and the water, I am glad you got more answers, but I am still passing on this series. I just wasn't impressed.

    1. Totally underestand. I liked Ester and more easily able to ignore that there are unanswered questions when the series is just starting.

  5. I always get freaked by these Wanderer novels. They can be so desolate.

  6. oh it's sad about the end, it's always the most difficult thing to do I think. thanks for the review

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  9. The POV stuff would annoy the crap out of me but I do like the sound of this one.


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