Haven is set several years after the action of Shelter, the first book in The Aftermath series. It’s almost essential to read Shelter first in order to understand the social and physical effects of the Sisters asteroids on the English countryside. The first book spends more time discussing the various factions that have risen up and tried to dominate the different parts of the British Isle since the natural disaster. Shelter also does a good job describing how the people are living without our modern conveniences.
The basic premise of Haven is pretty simple: a thirteen-year-old boy named Forktongue Davy is abducted and then stolen and then kidnaped… People say that within his epilepsy seizures are visions that may be the key to reformulating the use of old tech. This would provide a powerful advantage to whichever faction can obtain the boy. He’s a genuine and very likable character who changes and develops as the circumstances advance around him. Through the rest of the novel, there’s lots of backstabbing, a bit of reinvented science, and some very unique fighting scenes with crossbows.
But. There are several faults in this book. There’s a large section where the entire writing style changes. The background of one of the main secondary characters is mapped out for too long with way too much tell and not enough show. Also, there are several threads that are left hanging to the point where I asked myself at the end of the book, Hey! What ever happened to so-and-so?
Unfortunately, Haven is a setback in The Aftermath series. A great world to play in and some very interesting characters, but the plot was lacking and the writing slogged along at times. My hope is that the third book will right the ship because the setting is so cleverly devised.
2 out of 5 stars
Releases August 7th.
Thank you to NetGalley, Rebellion Publishing, and Adam Roberts for the advanced copy for review.