Sam was sitting in class, when all of a sudden everyone over the age of fifteen disappeared into thin the air. Now, all the teenagers within the area of Perdido Beach, California who would normally be spending their time surfing or reading a book, must take care of the younger children and try to find a way to get out the FAYZ (Fallout Alley Youth Zone). Meanwhile, kids from the private school up the hill from the town that was also affected are trying to take over the town and kill all the teenagers that stand in their way.
I really liked how this novel was post apocalyptic and yet, it didn’t seem like that was all the story was about. There was also the elements of self conflict in the minds of Sam and Computer Jack. Plus the fact that the private school kids fought the town kids for dominance in the area, gang style.
My favourite character was Computer Jack. He was a kid from the private school trying to take over the town. Jack had extreme computer skills, hence the nickname. The older kids used Jack for his knowledge on technology and didn’t give him very much in return. Throughout the book you get little snippets of what’s going on in his mind – he is fully aware that he is working for the bad kids but there’s nothing he can do about it, because he is being constantly bullied by those same bad people.
Something that I had a problem with is the fact that the character Astrid (she’s from the town) is nicknamed ‘Astrid the Genius’ but as you go through the book she uses less and less of her logic skills and has to be saved by Sam more and more. Coincidentally, as the book goes along, Sam and Astrid fall in love. That doesn’t mean Astrid can’t fix problems with her giant brain just because Sam likes her and she likes Sam.
Another thing that I was not a fan of was this other worldly creature called ‘The Darkness’, it was only barely introduced and didn’t really have a large role. I feel like you could have taken The Darkness out completely and the story would have been fine. Now, this book is the first in a long series so The Darkness could have a much larger role in the following novels but for now, he/she/it is a pretty useless character.
Still, this book was pretty good, it was a great post-apocalyptic book, there were just a few problems in the story line. I recommend this book for post-apocalyptic lovers and haters alike!