Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Where the Rock Splits the Sky by Philip Webb - review by Nikhil

That friendship trumps selfishness is one of the most important life lessons to learn, and one would be hard-pressed to find a book that does a better job of teaching this than the dystopian futuristic novel Where the Rock Splits the Sky by Philip Webb.  In this novel, protagonist Megan and her two friends Kelly and Luis are forced out of their former lives and must navigate the Zone, a dangerous wasteland caused by an attempt by an alien race, the Visitors, who previously destroyed the Moon and stopped the Earth’s rotation, to wipe out the human race and inhabit Earth themselves.  In their quest to find the secrets of Megan’s lost father, which could help to rid the Earth of Visitors and stabilize the planet once again, the trio goes through all sorts of adventures ranging from playing a game of poker to ambushing a horse carriage to save the people inside.  The epic series of events that these characters experience changes them as people and reveals fundamental truths about human nature that overcome the boundaries of literature and apply to our own lives.

What impressed me most about the book was the author’s truly unique writing style: one that abounds with wit and of which every sentence is thoughtfully constructed.  It really engrosses the reader and makes the book engaging to read, rather than a chore.  This writing style of the author, which incorporates modern forms of sarcasm that may appeal to the younger generation while still remaining dignified in tone, is truly what makes the book great.

Furthermore, the novel is rich with literary devices such as irony, character development, foreshadowing, and metaphors.  It would be a good addition to a school library.  I think the book would be a good free reading choice.  It could also make for a good book club discussion for both boys and girls.

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