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We Are the Ants

Review

We Are the Ants

“If the world were going to end, but you could stop it, would you?” In Shaun David Hutchinson’s riveting drama, we explore the boundaries of forgiveness, pain, friendship and loss. Although Hutchinson has explored comparable topics in his previous works, WE ARE THE ANTSstands alone in its quest to advocate for issues that are usually not discussed.

When someone close to Henry Denton commits suicide, his world turns upside down. We follow Henry’s journey as he finds ways to cope and find the truth. WE ARE THE ANTS follows Henry’s life like a rollercoaster. We are there at the bottom of the ride when he was the victim of a ruthless bullying incident. We are also at the top, where Henry encounters his purpose in life with Diego, a boy who recently moved from Colorado.

Shaun David Hutchinson writes the novel with such poise and quality that it should be an instant favorite among many.

During the story, we see that Henry is comfortable with sadness. Not only is he dealing with his recent loss and frequent bullying, but his mom is an over-worked waitress who doesn’t have the energy or confidence to pursue her passion for cooking and his brother doesn’t go to school and has a baby on the way. On top of all this, Henry is routinely abducted by aliens. They don’t speak, but they communicate clearly. They’re going to destroy the world in 144 days, and all Henry has to do to save it is to push a red button.  It’s his choice, and he routinely asks everyone what they would do. Although he has more than one reason to save the world, WE ARE THE ANTS still makes Henry’s decision unpredictable.

I liked the consistency of the novel, but I found some of the strong thematic material throughout the book too vulgar and unnecessary. Additionally, it deviated from the content of the story. In spite of this, WE ARE THE ANTS is a remarkable story and a poignant reminder that individuals’ lives are valuable, sacred and hold meaning beyond themselves.  Shaun David Hutchinson writes the novel with such poise and quality that it should be an instant favorite among many. I would recommend this book for people who have been victims of bullying, have suffered a dramatic loss or are looking for a sense of purpose. 

Reviewed by Ariel G., Teen Board member on January 26, 2016

We Are the Ants
by Shaun David Hutchinson