Hardcover, 576 pages
Expected publication: October 16th 2012
by Tanglewood Press
Series : Ashfall #2
Setting: Illinois (United States) Iowa
It’s been over six months since the eruption of the Yellowstone supervolcano. Alex and Darla have been staying with Alex’s relatives, trying to cope with the new reality of the primitive world so vividly portrayed in Ashfall, the first book in this series. It’s also been six months of waiting for Alex’s parents to return from Iowa. Alex and Darla decide they can wait no longer and must retrace their journey into Iowa to find and bring back Alex’s parents to the tenuous safety of Illinois. But the landscape they cross is even more perilous than before, with life-and-death battles for food and power between the remaining communities. When the unthinkable happens, Alex must find new reserves of strength and determination to survive...
Not for the faint of heart, but definitely for readers who like an intense story. Book #2 has a bit less romance, more near death experiences and new characters that are seriously diverse and interesting.
The story continues and life gets more and more harsh. I love how Mike Mullen does not hold back! Dark, gritty, and heartbreaking. Ashen Winter made me...Uncomfortable. In an amazingly realistic way.
I would definitely recommend this series for more Upper YA readers, not younger. Some of the content is VERY mature. ( Extreme violence, rape, and Cannibalism ) This is not me trying to tell younger readers " Don't read this!" I just know that if I myself get uncomfortable reading it, some younger readers and parents might be uncomfortable as well.
One of the truly interesting things about the Ashfall series is it's possibility for reality, and not just in the distant future. All of the events that occur in this story could really happen in real life! The super volcano erupting, slave trades, cannibalism and so much more. But my FAVORITE thing about this story is one of the characters that Mike Mullen brought in for book #2. Ben. Ben and Alyssa are a brother and sister that Alex meets along his travels and they are a unique duo. Ben is a high functioning autistic teen. A character trait which I have yet to find in other YA books I have read. Ben is a wonderful character. Sharing not only his quirky and sometimes dangerous autistic traits, but also the amazing ones that help save not only his life, but the lives of many others in this extreme post-eruption world!
All in all. If you liked book # 1 Ashfall, you will LOVE Ashen Winter. And if you haven't read Ashfall I highly recommend it!
Here is a link to my review of Book #1 Ashfall! : Ashfall Review