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A modernized Lord of the Flies.

By Donna Sirianni, editor

Sep 7, 2008: At least that’s what it kept reminding me of: kids without parents trying to survive on their own, managing "tribes" and themselves, trying to fight a feral instinct that is constantly creeping up and threatening their survival.

This is definitely a very interesting story. I would have liked to know more about this disease in the context of the story itself instead of it being alluded to but my understanding is it’s all in the extra material on the site. I like to read the story first to see if I would want to read anything extra. I definitely do. I actually had to keep myself from reading more than my usual five chapters (or in this case posted parts) so I could do the review.

The surroundings of this quasi-post-apocalyptic world are probably better portrayed than the characters we’re following. I get a great sense of disparity, urgency and fear cycling all around them. Even in the facade of the more brash gangs around them, there’s fear of whether even they’ll survive to see the next day. It also makes me realize that, really, only a certain age rage of children survived. Those too young would probably die of neglect, leaving tweens (maybe) and teens and young adults. It just adds to the bleakness of the world.

I would like to get deeper into the head of one of the characters, preferably Cassie. The story seems to be told from a more omniscient viewpoint than anything else which leaves room, and me yearning, for as much character growth as the world around them has shown.

The Excerpt from Cassie’s Journal I felt was a bit contrived, mainly because it stands alone. It seemed really out of place in terms of viewpoint and felt it wanted to get a bit more information across than what the story itself was giving. I think a more limited POV would solve that pretty simply. On top of that it was just a shallow excerpt, griping on looks and how one girl looks better than the other. It just seemed out of place for the context they were in. I understood the grasp for normalcy but it just didn’t sit right with me.

I also felt Cassie’s certified survivalist skills were a little too convenient and at the same time proving useless. Could have fooled me she could survive in the wilderness until she claimed to have that title. I would have liked to have seen more of these skills instead her seeming to be no more skillful than her friend.

Despite all that, though, this story had me wanting to read more; not just the chapters but all of the information that’s on the site. It had just enough insanity in this world to bait the reader into wanting to follow through with the story. It’s a tease and I wanted to keep reading to see if I’d get greater satisfaction from it or if it would continue to taunt me, mocking me that it knew more than I did and I would just have to dig to find it all. I also really liked the site itself. It’s simple yet gives a good vibe for the story. I’m definitely going to keep reading this one and I would recommend others start as well.

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