Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Review: Sky on Fire

Title: Sky on Fire
Author: Emmy Laybourne
Series: Monument 14 #2
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Publication Date: May 28, 2013
Source: Won

Trapped in a superstore by a series of escalating disasters, including a monster hailstorm and terrifying chemical weapons spill, brothers Dean and Alex learned how to survive and worked together with twelve other kids to build a refuge from the chaos. But then strangers appeared, destroying their fragile peace, and bringing both fresh disaster and a glimmer of hope. 

Knowing that the chemical weapons saturating the air outside will turn him into a bloodthirsty rage monster, Dean decides to stay in the safety of the store with Astrid and some of the younger kids. But their sanctuary has already been breached once. . . .

Meanwhile, Alex, determined to find their parents, heads out into the darkness and devastation with Niko and some others in a recently repaired school bus. If they can get to Denver International Airport, they might be evacuated to safety. But the outside world is even worse than they expected. . . 

If I were to choose a favourite genre, I would likely choose apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic. Mix that with my love for YA and Monument 14 should theoretically be the series for me. While I found Monument 14 to be ok, I definitely found Sky on Fire to be an improvement! I love how Emmy Laybourne was able to mix defending what you have with being on the road, two important aspects of any survival story.

In this installment, we have alternating POV between Dean and his little brother Alex. I found myself preferring Alex's chapters, since I identified more with him as a character. However, there was nothing wrong with Dean's chapters, just personal preference. I often have issues with alternating POV, but I thought it worked in this one, considering the plot.

As I mentioned, I enjoyed reading Alex's POV, but I sometimes found Dean to be a bit meh. He doesn't have a ton of personality, besides being immensely devoted to Astrid, who I'm also not crazy about. However, I love a bunch of the other characters, especially the little kids. Max always has me laughing and Baptiste and Ulysses are adorable as well.

One thing I wasn't expecting were the feels I got near the end of the story! I had tears rolling down my cheeks! I don't want to give anything away, but I definitely had a few hugs on my heartstrings.

My only complaint is that this book was short at only 212 pages. I would have liked another 50-100 pages to feel a bit more satisfied.

I enjoyed Sky on Fire more than it's predecessor, Monument 14, so I'm hoping that Ms. Laybourne is able to keep up her momentum with Savage Drift, which comes out soon!

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  1. So glad this was better than the first. I liked the first but like you said, I didn't love it.

    Great review!

  2. I only skimmed b/c I haven't read book 1 yet (but I DO have it), but I am SO happy that the series is improving. I've had the first book in my "do I hold onto it for a bit longer, or do I pass it along?" pile. Looks like I'll be keeping it ;)

  3. I haven't read any of these books, but that probably has to do with my wariness of apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic settings. I like them, but it takes a lot for me to thoroughly enjoy them. I suppose it's just not my genre. *shrugs* Great review, though!

  4. Cool, it's always good to hear that a sequel is an improvement over the first book because that doesn't often happen! Now I'm curious about your review for the third book... if it's a satisfying finish, then I'll just have to check out the trilogy for myself!

  5. The ending was really good I liked it too. I hate the writing in this series though bu the story is compelling and exciting. I also liked this one more than the first, and I'm curious to see how it will end in the final book. And yay for matching fav genres! :)

  6. Love this cover! I will have to check out this series!
    Missie @ A Flurry of Ponderings

  7. I love post-apocalyptic and survival stories myself. This is one series I really enjoy and I can't wait for SAVAGE DRIFT either. I agree that it was way too short. It felt so sudden

  8. I want to read this one soon!!! Great review!
    Bethzaida @ Bookittyblog