Troop of Shadows by Nicki Huntsman Smith
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Maybe I'm getting a little jaded with the whole idea of post-apocalyptic fiction or maybe I'm just tired of plain-Jane portrayals without excellent hooks.
Fortunately for us, this isn't one of those. :)
The execution is all survival fiction after a major plague with all the elements you might expect, the food runs, guns, men treating women like inflatable bags to be thrown away, evil villains, and striving for civilization amongst all the rot.
However, the hook is rather neat. The plague kills off everyone except special needs cases. There's a big continuum between sociopaths, the autistic, and the genuinely brilliant and adaptable, but that's a cool spin on who survives to later die.
I had the most enjoyment not out of the survival bits but in seeing how the characters moved along and got along and how they meshed in a large community.
It feels like humanity is being fine-tuned to some gigantic genetic experiment, and we're right there in the heart of it.
No spoilers. It's simply good post-apocalyptic fiction that not only conforms, but stands out with the rest of the genre. More than that, it shines in the twist. :)
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