Title: Sunrise (Ashfall #3)
Author: Mike Mullin
Publisher: Tanglewood Press
Release date: April 15th 2014
Buy on: Amazon | B&N | BookDepository
You can read my review of Ashfall - here & Ashen Winter - here
The Yellowstone supervolcano nearly wiped out the human race. Now, almost a year after the eruption, the survivors seem determined to finish the job. Communities wage war on each other, gangs of cannibals roam the countryside, and what little government survived the eruption has collapsed completely. The ham radio has gone silent. Sickness, cold, and starvation are the survivors' constant companions.
When it becomes apparent that their home is no longer safe and adults are not facing the stark realities, Alex and Darla must create a community that can survive the ongoing disaster, an almost impossible task requiring even more guts and more smarts than ever — and unthinkable sacrifice. If they fail . . . they, their loved ones, and the few remaining survivors will perish.
This epic finale has the heart of Ashfall, the action of Ashen Winter, and a depth all its own, examining questions of responsibility and bravery, civilization and society, illuminated by the story of an unshakable love that transcends a post-apocalyptic world and even life itself.
I'll start with a mini summary of this great trilogy, in the first book Ashfall), Alex is a fifteen year old boy, that stays at home while his family goes to visit his uncle and while he´s at home alone the apocalypse happen, because the Yellowstone supervolcano erupts and all nearby cities are affected by the spoils of rock and ash (Alex lives approx. 900 miles from the supervolcano) and his city is left without electricity, water, telephone and the city is obscured by a layer of ash covering the sun and once the ash stops falling, the weather changes and begins to snow and the winter comes sooner that expected and some predicted that this winter will last for several years, so the people panic and everything is in chaos. Alex knows that he can´t be without knowing about his family, so he decides to go looking for them and along the way he encounters many obstacles and meets Darla, a girl with whom he´ll team up to survive and she´s something like a genius for inventing things, machinery and is very smart.
Sunrise is a book that I have been DYING to read, because in September 2012 I read Ashfall and Ashen Winter back to back and although the latter doesn´t had a cliffhanger, I had to wait over a year to read the last book of the trilogy.
In Sunrise, Alex is sixteen years old at the beginning of the story, but something that I really liked about this book is that includes several years of his life, because at the end of the book he´s nineteen years old. Alex is a good guy, he just wants to survive in this new world that is very dark and violent, where many people died in the first months after the apocalypses and many of the survivors have lost their humanity and there is the prevailing law of the strongest and also there are bands of cannibals. Alex despite living in such a dark and violent world hasn´t lost his humanity and still believe the best of people as he had demonstrated before and sometimes he can be a bit naive but he grows up and became more mature and more cautious without losing his good heart.
And his romantic interest is Darla, she´s my hero because she´s strong, tough, outspoken, very smart and very good at creating machinery from parts they scavenge and manages to make them function in a world where there isn´t electricity and the gasoline is scarce. They´re a great team and during the time they´ve been together they know each other really well, both are smart, good strategists and are madly in love with each other, but their relationship is very mature (at least for their age) and they´re honest with each other.
Sunrise is primarily the story of what Alex and Darla have to do to survive in this new world and find the right place to settle with Alex´s family and build a "safe" place to live; there were several moments of action where they face off against people that believe they can lead with violence in this new reality. And there is a rather unexpected twist in the story (approx. at 47 % of the book), it really surprised me and I couldn´t believe it, I had to reread that part more than once to believe that it was actually happening.
About the secondary characters, we get to see that Ben has a more important role in this story and becomes a key element for their survival. Ed (which I didn´t remember) is a reformed cannibal whom Alex gives a second chance and becomes a loyal friend and protector of the group. We also read a bit more of Alyssa, Rebeca (Alex 's sister), Max, Anna (Alex´s cousins) and Uncle Paul. And the characters that I like the least were Alex 's mom, Major Petty and Red, I just couldn´t stand them at certain times.
Overall, I LOVED SUNRISE! IT´S A GREAT READ! It is a very realistic book, raw, violent and scary at moments about survival in a post-apocalyptic world. And I loved the ending, it felt right and it left me very satisfied on how things end. The Ashfall trilogy is one of the best of this genre that I've read so far, I recommend it to everyone, it´s a trilogy that you can´t miss!.