Economic ruin and partisan rancor have pushed America to the brink of a new civil war. Esther is caught in the middle, serving as a page in the United States House of Representatives when rogue politicians and military leaders stage a modern day coup d'etat. When the coup turns violent, she abandons Washington, D.C. for home. She must learn to survive on her own as transportation and financial networks fail, as the war disrupts food and water supplies. The result is a cautionary tale about political extremism and the true cost of war.
I really enjoyed this book, but not for the reasons that I expected to. I was expecting a romantic dystopian based around war, it isn't a dystopian because they aren't under the control of an extremist controlling government and it's pretty present day and the romance was there, but not until quite late in the book.
Nevertheless, I still loved reading this, it took a while to get into as the beginning just follows Esther as she goes about her every day life, but as soon as the war hits her the story picks up and I could not put this book down. I really liked the way that this book was unique and really stood out. There are so many books about somebody having to survive through a very difficult situation, but this is so real and possible. Throughout the book Esther is caught in the very center of a war, she loses her friends, she herself nearly dies, she watches people do the worst possible, most inhumane things. It's truly a book about how people can lose their humanity in severe situations.
As a character, Esther was fantastic. She starts out as a sassy by still quite naive girl and we see her develop to become a head strong survivor over the course of the story, her determination to get home is her driving point and without it I don't think that I would have liked the book half as much if I wasn't as determined for Esther to get home as she was herself.
I wished there had been more romance but at the same time, the lack of it made the book more about what was going on rather than it being a cheesy romance. I loved Matt and Esther though, the rate at which they came to care about each other felt as though it worked because of what was going on.
At times I struggled to keep going as at some points the book was very repetitive however when something did happen, it came with a bang. I enjoyed the writing though I don't it will appeal to younger YA readers and I'd recommend this book to older teens and adults.
Overall, a great book, despite a few pacing issues at times. A sassy lead character, a touch of romance and a lot of determination made this book one that i would recommend.
Overall rating: B
Book released September 17th. book recieved for review from the author.