Monday, May 26, 2014

The Three by Sarah Lotz

January 12, 2012 four planes crash around the world. The crashes are devastating, but from three of them emerge one survivor each....a child. These children are quickly dubbed "The Three" and capture the fear, paranoia, and interest of the world.

The book The Three is very cleverly written as a book inside a book. The bulk of the story unfolds through a fictional best-seller that is meant to be an account of the crashes and the aftermath of the three. Conspiracy theories, end times prophecies and more abound. The fictional author, Elspeth Martins, includes interviews, transcripts, and official documents to share the story.

It kind of vaguely calls to mind, World War Z, but is a lot more compelling from my point of view. She very cleverly drops just the tiniest hints of what happened in the future which makes you race through the pages. I really had a hard time putting this one down! I had to know what happened and how it all unfolded. And the premise is just so unique. There were really no down parts of the book it all, it barreled full speed ahead.

And yes it's a bit of a social commentary, although I find that part less clever overall? Like, you could almost subtitle the book, FEAR OF CONSERVATIVES AND RELIGIOUS FOLK. Which you know fair enough. There are definitely a lot of people that misuse religion and abuse others through it, but I find this one dimensional portrayal a little tiresome and certainly far from anything new. Having said that, it didn't keep me from enjoying the book at all! I still raced through the pages and had to know what would happen next.

More interesting to me than that, though, was how she capitalizes on the sort of...undercurrent of resentment Japanese may have towards Americans. It's been awhile since I taught in Japan now, but this is a real thing! And while on the surface you might not sense it, it's very much there. I think she establishes it really well, starting with Okinawa and then kind of branching out. I haven't thought about this in a long time, so to me it was interesting. But hey I always think all things Japan are interesting, so...

Also, this is a book that doesn't explain everything away, yay!

Highly recommended, compulsively readable, creepy and just plain a good time.

*I read a galley provided by the publisher!

The author's page revealsed she's written other books I'll definitely want to check out (can't figure out if they're available in the States or just published by Hachette and thus a pain to find on Amazon) including a YA zombie series!


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