White Horse by Alex Adams
Published: April 17, 2012Publisher: Emily Beslter Books/AtriaPages: 292Received: ARC for honest review (from Simon and Schuster Canada)
Thirty-year-old Zoe leads an ordinary life until the end of the world arrives. She is cleaning cages and floors at Pope Pharmaceuticals when the President of the United States announces that human beings are no longer a viable species. When Zoe realizes that everyone she loves is disappearing, she starts running. Scared and alone in a shockingly changed world, she embarks on a remarkable journey of survival and redemption. Along the way, Zoe comes to see that humans are not defined by their genetic code, but rather by their actions and choices. White Horse offers hope for a broken world, where love can lead to the most unexpected places.
White Horse is the kind of book that you can't put down. It reminds me of looking at a gruesome car crash, where it's so terrifying but you just can't help but to look anyway. It's such a horrifying thought that some disease could wipe out the world in such a quick and disturbing way. I actually had dreams, not nightmares, about this scenario over and over while reading this book - how would I handle this new life and how would it change me?
From the start Zoe is cautious in her choices, yet is a very strong character We see this strength building throughout the story as it flips back and forth between THEN and NOW. Zoe's heart has already been hurt in the past, so when she is introduced to the reader she already has walls built up and a snarkiness in her bite. I think it's part of what I loved about her, how she can be so stoic and strong one minute, and then emotional and completely human the next. Zoe wants to keep some semblance of humanity alive even during such a dismal looking future. Zoe carries a hope within her that she might still have a future, if she can just find that one person who makes her heart beat faster with just a touch.
Then on the complete opposite end of the character spectrum we meet The Swiss. The one and only truly terrifying and evil being in this story. The Swiss is menacing, creepy, and completely psychotic. How Zoe put up with The Swiss for so long I will never understand. The Swiss is worse than any of the creatures created by this apocalyptic disease. There are three types of people in this new world: the dead, the forever changed and the immune. Which would you rather be?
The ending of this book gives us hope, but how much hope can one live on? Will there come a time when hope just isn't enough? I am very intrigued with how the story will continue and what will happen to Zoe and those she holds close. The last line in the book definitely has me waiting for the next in the series.