Title: The Wolf and the Rain
Author: Tanya Lee
I need to tell you how much I loved this book. I loved the setup, I loved the protagonist, and I loved the settings. The author has created an entirely believable dystopian future. The dirty, dangerous North and the clinical, authoritarian South feel like essential characters in the story, and I was immediately hooked by the protagonist’s life as she tries to survive as a newcomer in the North.
There are two storylines woven together throughout the book, and the relationship between the protagonist scraping a living in the North, and the girl growing up in the regimented South, is not made clear. However, both stories are intriguing, and it is often a disappointment when the narrative switches back to the other location – a strength, not a weakness, as both stories held my attention.
Samarra is lucky. She’s found a place to sleep and a job as a courier for one of the most powerful families in the Barrow, the anarchic post-collapse city where she’s trying to earn a living and keep a low profile. Her job takes her all over the city, and she witnesses its violence and secrets, poverty and desperation. When she learns that the girl who used to have her job disappeared, and that she’s not the only young woman missing from the Barrow, Samarra is drawn into the dark side of a society where most people are happy to turn a blind eye and be thankful that they’ve made it through the day.
In the South, a group of children is training to be productive participants in their regimented society. Kept in dormitories and separated from any family, the children experience daily military-style physical drills combined with a rigid curriculum and strict rules. The contrast between the two settings, and their very different reactions to a climate disaster, keeps the pages turning. Both systems are understandable, and both have their advantages and dangers.
The action-packed, emotional conclusion provides a stepping off point for the sequel, and I can’t wait to dive in!
Have you read The Wolf and the Rain? What did you think of the dystopian setup? Did you enjoy Samarra’s story? Click through to the full blog to access the comments section, and share your thoughts! No spoilers, though – you can post those on GoodReads!
YA review: The Wolf and the Rain cross-posted to GoodReads.
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