Sunday, March 27, 2011

Book Review: Drought by Pam Bachorz

This book is hard to review, because my feelings for the first and second half are so conflicting. The first half seemed slow. There was no suspense and there didn't seem like there was anything in the first part that really could have created suspense. It was an information dump. It let you know the main characters, the setting, and the situation. (Something I also could've found out just by looking at the back of the book.)

"Ruby dreams of escaping the Congregation. Escape from slaver Darwin West and his cruel Overseers. Escape from the backbreaking work of gathering Water. Escape from living as if it is still 1812, the year they were enslaved.

When Ruby meets Ford--an irrestistable, kind, forbidden new Overseer--she longs to run away with him to the modern world where she ould live a normal teenage life. Escape with Ford would be so simple.

But if Ruby leaves, her community is condemned to certain death. She, alone, possesses the secret ingredient that makes the Water so special--her blood--and it's the one thing that the Congregation cannot live without.

Drought is the haunting story of  one community's thirt for life, and the dangerous struggle of the only girl who can grant it."

Sounds intense doesn't it? Yeah, that's what I thought.  I guess, at least in the beginning, I wanted more. I know sometimes there's only so much excitement an author can include, but a couple hundred pages of "this is where they live. Look how horrible the Overseers are! Don't you just hate them? And look how unfair life is for poor Ruby?" I mean, there could have been a couple more twists...

But then the second half came around and I ended up finishing the book in a day. All of a sudden everything started happening--all the chaos that a good book contains--and I couldn't stop. I wanted to know what would happen to the characters. And the interesting thing was, the events weren't that completely different from those in the beginning, they were just suddenly charged with meaning. Very very cool.

The other fun thing about this book is that it brings up a lot of fun ethical questions, most along the lines of "is it better for one person to suffer or for hundreds to suffer?" There are also a good deal of potential religious questions too. (Can't go divulging too much now, can I?)

All in all, Drought rates about 3 out of five stars. Now, I might just be rating over-critically, considering I just read the amazingness that is  FEED by Mira Grant, but I think that though Drought is a pretty good read, that with just a little bit of tweaking could have been much better.

Should you read it? Yes. It does bring up some very excellent questions and, as I said, the ending is quite good.

<3 Gina Blechman