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Review of Above by Isla Morley

by - August 29, 2014

Format: eBook
Genres: Adult, Mystery,
Pages: 384
Publisher: Gallery Books
Release Date: 04/03/2014
Find The Author: Website ¦ Twitter
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I am a secret no one is able to tell.

Blythe Hallowell is sixteen when she is abducted by a survivalist and locked away in an aban­doned missile silo in Eudora, Kansas. At first, she focuses frantically on finding a way out, until the harrowing truth of her new existence settles in—the crushing loneliness, the terrifying madness of a captor who believes he is saving her from the end of the world, and the persistent temptation to give up. But nothing prepares Blythe for the burden of raising a child in confinement. Deter­mined to give the boy everything she has lost, she pushes aside the truth about a world he may never see for a myth that just might give mean­ing to their lives below ground. Years later, their lives are ambushed by an event at once promis­ing and devastating. As Blythe’s dream of going home hangs in the balance, she faces the ultimate choice - between survival and freedom.

Above is the story of Blythe Hallowell, who was kidnapped at the age of sixteen by a man named Dobbs, and forced to live in an underground silo with him. Dobbs is crazy and believes that the end of the world is coming and that they should 'seed the new world', something that happens sooner than either of them expected.

Above covers the period of many years, which I found interesting. Obviously, being almost strictly a YA Book reader, I don't often read books over the period of years. We meet Blythe when she is sixteen through to about eighteen, then when she's in her twenties, then in her thirties. I really enjoyed Blythe's voice, as she grows older it changes, and it shows when she feels older than she is too.

Blythe is kind of crazy from the moment we meet her. When she was younger it was the violent crazy, although being violent towards a kidnapper is perfectly understandable she just came across as kind of deranged. Later it was a calmer crazy, staying in bed and not moving and then when she's older, she seems in denial about everything and doesn't want to think about anything other than Adam, who's starting to ask questions.

This story did bare strong resemblances to Emma Donoghue's Room, which I read a few years ago. I'm hoping this was accidental. We don't see much of Adam when he's Jack's age (the main character in Room) though. I didn't really like Adam, I could understand why he was the way he was but I found him very frustrating and he seemed to slow the whole plot down.

I love plot twists, when they work. I have read a lot of books though and the more I read the more I can guess exactly what will happen in the plot. I guessed what would happen in this before I'd even read a quarter of the book, so the rest was just spent waiting for it to happen. I was surprised by another smaller event later at least. 

The second half of the book is quite shaky and I was never sure where we would go. I did find myself wishing that some major things were different, and I think the story would have been better with them. This isn't my book though. The ending was pretty solid and didn't leave me wondering what else could happen or have any cliff hangers, as this appears to be a standalone story.

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