Oh, this book! So, this is the second in the series, Chaos Walking. And it is a mighty mighty good series. You must start with the first book, The Knife of Never Letting Go. This first installment was an unbelievable book. Of course, it ended on a cliff hanger and the second book picks right up where it left off. The Ask and the Answer is a bit like The Empire Strikes Back. The heros get hurt. The bad guys have the upper hand. You are left wondering if good is going to triumph over evil and how. I’m hoping all ends well in book three. I will let you know.
What is so fabulous about this series is the world building. To make a good sci-fi or fantasy book, you must build a good world and Mr. Ness knocked one out of the park here. I’ve read quite a bit of sci-fi and fantasy in my day but this world is so totally unique it’s astounding. The universe he creates leads into some very deep and hard questions about what it means to be a good person. Staying true to yourself. The power of love. Sacrifice. Redemption. The consequences of decisions we make. Getting up after we fall. I could go on and on and on about the many ideas this book is chalk full of: deep moral delimnas entwined with a racing plot line. It is, however, rather dark and violent so be warned. Just thinking the word “Todd?” makes me tear up even now. Read the first book and you’ll know why. But be warned, so far, this series is just tearing me apart. Here’s hoping there are some Ewoks in part three….