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Above Hardcover – March 4, 2014
"Children of Blood and Bone"
Tomi Adeyemi conjures a stunning world of dark magic and danger in her West African-inspired fantasy debut. Learn more
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Kidnapped on her way home from a summer festival in her corn-country hamlet of Eudora, Kansas, 16-year-old Blythe Hallowell spends the next two decades of her life in an abandoned Cold War-era missile silo, dozens of feet underground. Her abductor, high-school librarian Dobbs Hordin, is a “conspiracy theory du jour” survivalist who has chosen Blythe to play Eve to his Adam when the apocalypse comes. Having outfitted the silo with all the building blocks for a new civilization, Blythe and Dobbs are left to play a deadly and protracted waiting game as one scenario for annihilation after another fails to occur. And then one day, well into middle age and accompanied by the teenage son she bore while in captivity, Blythe manages to escape her insane captor’s grasp, only to find that one of Dobbs’ worst-case predictions has actually come to pass. Morley crafts a menacingly sinister tale of imprisonment and eerily inventive story of survival that will appeal to fans of riveting psychological suspense and cut-throat dystopian fiction. --Carol Haggas
“Quite moving…intriguing and provocative." (Kirkus Reviews)
“Morley tells a compelling story that builds suspense…a true page-turner. Half abduction story half dystopianfiction, this novel will appeal to fans of both.” (Library Journal)
"Reeled out with the chilling calmness of a Hitchcock film, Above haunts as it illuminates. Deftly told, this tale of human resilience in the face of madness is a horror classic for our times." (Lynn Cullen, bestselling author of Mrs. Poe)
"The isolation and darkness wrap you like wild vines and force you to face the nightmare, but Above plunges you forward and drives toward hope, because sometimes that's all that remains. This is a novel that challenges you to believe." (Michael Farris Smith, author of Rivers)
“Morley crafts a menacingly sinister tale of imprisonment and eerily inventive story of survival that will appeal to fans of riveting psychological suspense and cut-throat dystopian fiction.” (Booklist)
“Morley’s writing is magnetic, instantly attaching the reader to the story. We see, we feel, and we cringe at the victim’s circumstances.”
(NY Journal of Books)
"Morley scores with an audacious page-turner. In a series of gripping twists, Morley elevates the complexities of Blythe and Adam’s situation, deepening the themes of survival and dependence… a stellar and surprising ride.” (Publishers Weekly)
"A riveting, heartstopping tale of determination, love and hope for the future." (Fiction Addiction)
“A compelling tale of survival, reinvention, and hope. . . . Vivid and poignant.” (The Boston Globe)
“Grips your heart from the first page and doesn’t let go. . . . A novel to savor.” (Sara Gruen)
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The novel is separated into two sections: Below and Above. Obviously the first part of the narrative deals with Blythe's captivity below ground and her coping mechanisms while the second portends a future.
There is no doubt that Above is a compelling novel to read and will keep you engrossed in all the action.
However, for me Above was a so-so read. I have several major problems with it.
First I really felt that the beginning of Morley's novel owes too great a debt to Emma Donoghue's Room. I totally understand that abduction and captivity of a young woman in a novel may be coincidental, but it felt too similar at the beginning. I will acknowledge that the comparison ends in the second half when the story takes a dystopian turn.
This duality of the two sections is another problem for me. The complete novel felt like two separate novels crammed together without the benefit of enough development of the plot to make the complete novel work as the sweeping dystopian saga it wants to be. The ideas are there, but the execution is lacking and inconsistent.
For most readers the BIGGEST problem I had with Above won't be a problem for you at all, so you can ignore this complaint.
I wish Morley had made up a mythical city in Kansas rather than using an existing one, because she repeatedly annoyed me with her descriptions and summations of the area. See I live in Kansas and know Eudora, Blythe's longed-for hometown. While Eudora is a small town, the population is almost 3 times Morley's number. That wouldn't include the large population living outside the city limits. And there is a very large population living in the country. It's only about 20 minutes down the highway until you reach the outer suburbs of the whole Johnson County/Kansas City suburban area. When Morley said "Douglas County, Kansas, land of miles and miles of nothing" I wanted her to leave California and come see the nothing she is describing, because if she has visited the area she missed an essential truth: that it's actually pretty close to a large population area thus we have many commuters living here, in these miles and miles of nothing, in towns and acreages.
But then she might simply need to visit Kansas in February. Blythe describes her 5th birthday party. She says her mother has set up the card table in the backyard... on February 2nd. Ummm, not likely. We've had some bitter cold days here in Kansas in February. Sure, sometimes it warms up but no one would be putting up a card table in the backyard for a birthday party on February 2.
And yes, FYI, there are seagulls inland on lakes.
Disclosure: I received an advanced reading copy of this book from the Gallery Books for review purposes.
I got a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review
I was so very excited to read this book because all the reviews were compairing this book to "ROOM" which i LOVED! Sadly this book did not even come close to how good "ROOM" was. I was very disappointed. And I found out after reading this book that i do not like distopian books AT ALL
Blythe Hallowell is a 16 year old girl who was kidnapped by her library school teacher and taken under ground. She was lot aloud to leave and every time she asked when she could go home the library teacher told her about how the world was going to end and he was saving her and one day they will emerage from under ground and start there own population.
Blythe was abused and raped by her capture and ended up having a little baby girl that passes away right after birth. The capture ends up kidnapping a little boy to bring back to blythe since she was so heart broken from loosing her child. I am not going to into details about the boy because i do not want to spoil the story, except to say it does not end well.
She does end up having another baby, a boy this time, who survives and lives with her for a long time named Adam. When Adam is 15 years old blythe makes a daring escape with Adam and try to go "ABOVE" only to realize what the capture has been saying all along actually happend. The world was coming to an end and all these horriable things were happening.
On a misson to find her parents and family she runs into the "locals" who have some sort of deformaity from radation. As Blythe’s dream of going home hangs in the balance, she faces the ultimate choice—between survival and freedom.
The begining of the book is so good it sucks you in and you just can not stop reading. then the book get VERY boring. VERY. It picks up again once they escape, but then i found it boring AGAIN. if your a big fan of distopian then this book is for you.
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**Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.Read more