What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that After the Snow is a post-apocalyptic adventure that's more realistic than many, centered on one 15-year-old boy's quest to find his missing family in the wilds of Europe during a new Ice Age. There's some profanity (including "f--k"), a few references to sex, and depictions of violence against both animals (a pack of feral dogs) and among human combatants. One particularly intense scene involves torture and a murder.
What's the story?
In a near-future Europe in the grips of a new Ice Age, 15-year-old Willo returns from snaring rabbits to find that his whole family has vanished without a trace. Determined to learn what happened to them, he musters his resources and sets off into the forest with a sled and as many provisions as he can pull through the snow. He stumbles upon a starving girl and her dying brother; from that point on, he has a hard time focusing on his quest, having to contend with feral dogs, cannibals, and government agents from the far-off city.
Is it any good?
AFTER THE SNOW is a thoughtful and compelling story of survival in a harsh and unforgiving future. There are no grand conspiracies, only groups of desperate people with conflicting agendas. Willo's story depends a little too much on coincidence at times, but there's no denying the plot's propulsive forward motion.
Some readers may not like author S.D. Crockett's choice of narrative voice: It's an unadorned, choppy, and consciously unliterary style. But others may see that Willo's interior voice matches his psychological upbringing and that it gives his story an extra sense of urgency.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about the possible effects of climate change and how it might affect weather patterns in the future. Is a new Ice Age possible?
During times of hardship, how do governments treat their citizens? Why are people willing to obey new rules when they're hungry and frightened?
Is it better to stay in one place and fight for what you believe is right or to move on and try to effect change elsewhere?