Friday, May 16, 2014

Pandemic by Yvonne Ventresca

If you're a follower of my blog, then you know I like dystopian stories. Another love of mine are stories of survival, like plague or end-of-the world stuff. For today's YA Friday I am looking at a new release from Sky Pony Press, Pandemic by Yvonne Ventresca.

The Story-
 Lil used to be a model student and all around fun girl, but something happened last year that changed everything, and only a handful of people know the truth. Lil is now finding it hard to keep her grades up and has withdrawn from her old friends. Plus, she now has the urge to prepare for different possibilities, including emergency survival and food storage.

It seems like Lil's worst fears are coming true when people in her community begin to get sick, and eventually die. With both her parents out of town, Lil is forced to cope with the situation on her own. Lil does everything she can to survive, but as the whole town dies around her, the events of the past catch up to her and everything falls apart.

My Thoughts- 
Great plague, death and dying book that is not too gory. You know something bad is going to happen when both of Lil's parent's take off at the beginning of the illness, leaving her alone for the weekend. I have to say that Lil's character handles things a lot better than I thought she would. At the beginning of the book she is broken, the events of the past effecting her daily life. So, when it all goes to pot, you'd think she'd hole up in her house, but she doesn't. Instead she takes action, helping out children in need. I think the tragedy actually brings a lot of her old self back.

I also love the wrap up at the end. As things in Lil's town (point zero) are finally stable, the picture broadens and the reader gets a look at the illness spreading to the rest of the world. It sets the stage for another book, if wanted.

SPOILERS*** I'm going to get into spoilers, because I feel like the event that happened in Lil's past, an attempted rape by a teacher, is such a huge concept. The author does a good job letting the reader know that something happened, but not going into details. However, you get a sense that something inappropriate happened with a teacher. The reader doesn't hear the whole story until the character is ready to tell it to someone else and trust them. On a side note, the reaction of her two best friends is so polar opposite that it is disturbing.

The only plot point that bugged me was that none of the main characters died. As the book gets underway, EVERYONE who gets sick dies. Later Lil's dad mentions that if you use the anti-viral medication, that there is only a 50% chance it will help. So, when Lil,Reggie, TJ and Cam all get ill, even with the anti-viral being used, you'd think one wouldn't make it.

Oh well, overall a great survival story that stays on the light side. 4 Stars!


  1. Thank you, Dorine, for taking the time to read and review Pandemic. And I love your webiste path photo. Did you take the picture? I'm always drawn to photos/artwork of doorways and nature paths.


    1. Thanks Yvonne. I found the photo on a stock photo website years ago. i fell in love with it.