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After the Red Rain

Review

After the Red Rain

In a post-apocalyptic setting, Deedra leads a quite simple and boring life.  Her days consist of working on an assembly line at the local factory and scavenging the area for extra food.  When a gorgeous boy named Rose walks across the river that divides two territories, Deedra’s life begins to change.  In a whirlwind of adventure, AFTER THE RED RAIN will have you reading ahead, impatient to find what happens next.
 
Barry Lyga is one of my all-time favorite authors.  If a book is written by him, you can bet that I’ll already have my nose in it.  His books usually consist of serial killers and thought-provoking plots.  When I heard about AFTER THE RED RAIN, a dystopian novel written by Lyga and two famous Hollywood names --- Facinelli and DeFranco --- curiosity struck.  Unfortunately, I was disappointed with it.
 
World-building is incredibly significant in any dystopian novel; readers have to understand what happened before the plot even gets rolling.  RED RAIN lacked that element until the very end, which is a bit too late considering readers will be exiting that world in a matter of pages.  However, the curiosity of the world and its characters drove me to read further.
 
AFTER THE RED RAIN will keep you on the edge of your seat, hoping everything turns out okay in the end.
 
As a standalone, these authors put in the perfect amount of character development.  As much as I think they were pushing for a strong female protagonist, I found Rose to be the true lead of the book.  At first, Rose was just a boy with an incredibly strange name (which I will refrain from commenting on further as the characters in RED RAIN teased him enough about it), but it becomes evident that looks are not deceiving when readers discover he has certain abilities.  I found this to be very predictable, as with the rest of the story --- there was too much blatant foreshadowing throughout RED RAIN.
 
The plot serves as a dizzy, wild ride which doesn’t begin until well after page 100.  Before then, RED RAIN sets up the elements and puts them in place as if this were a chess board rather than a YA dystopian.  However, there were too many elements in play, especially in the beginning --- female protagonist who has something about her that makes her different?  Check. Boy with special powers? Check. Evil scientist? Check. Post-apocalyptic setting? Check.  Murder and investigation? Check.  Romance? Check.  Truth serum? Check.  It’s too much, and it doesn’t make the plot any more complex; it just makes it more difficult for readers to focus on the plot.
 
Despite my disappointment, AFTER THE RED RAIN is an original adventure that frightens readers and forces them to imagine a life where this is the reality. Barry Lyga, Peter Facinelli and Robert DeFranco’s AFTER THE RED RAIN will keep you on the edge of your seat, hoping everything turns out okay in the end.

Reviewed by Jeanna Michel on August 27, 2015

After the Red Rain
by Barry Lyga, Robert DeFranco, and Peter Facinelli