"The world has collapsed, and there are no heroes any more.
But when a lone gunman reluctantly accepts the mantel of protector to a young boy and his dying mother against the forces that pursue them, a hero may yet arise..."
- ❖ -- ❖ -- ❖ -
I'm trying not to get a temper tantrum over certain events. But frakk, man. Even though I knew where certain aspects of the story were headed, certain things sucked all of my emotional investment and desire to continue with the series. Why, Jay Posey?! Why?!
But, despite my disappointment over certain events, the truth is that this book is really, really freaking good. Three is truly one helluva post-apocalyptic sci-fi novel. It's filled with suspense, well-drawn characters, great world-building, and some great fight sequences.
Both the characters and the futuristic post-apocalyptic world are extremely vivid and well thought-out. I read that the author is a narrative writer for video games, and that background definitely shows.
I loved the way the story unfolded: with bits of information about the world and characters, motivations and background stories, revealing themselves slowly as the story progressed. I read a review in which the reviewer made note of the lack of (or not enough) exposition, but I actually preferred that. The way information was revealed kept me intrigued, engaged, and invested. Frankly, I thought it added to the suspense. But I can understand wanting to know more about the world. By the end, the reader still does not know what caused the collapse of civilization. But it's clear that it will be revealed in later books.
As to the narrative pacing, if I had to describe it in two words, it would be meticulous and unrelenting.
I loved the characters -- particularly the character Three. He is my idea of a perfect hero: tough, noble, and not afraid to be vulnerable. And he made mistakes which humanized him quite a bit.
The final 10% or so felt rushed, especially after so much time taken throughout the story to detail all events.
An epilogue was included which gives some finality to Book 1 so that if you do not wish to continue with the series, this would be a good stopping point.
So, will I continue with the series? Yes, darn it all, I will because I'm a glutton for punishment. And because I loved the storytelling, the writing, and the world too much to not continue.
Final rating: 4.5 stars