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The Girl with All the Gifts was always going to be a hard act to follow, and I was therefore a little underwhelmed by Fellside, but The Boy on the Bridge is easily another 5 star listen
The Boy is the second book in this series, and although it is set in a time which precedes the events of The Girl, it should definitely only be read second - otherwise you will spoil the surprise of The Girl! Arguably, The Boy was more of a challenge for the author to keep the reader gripped because, given the events of the Girl, you know where it's all headed, so no real opportunities for the author to give too many twists to the plot - instead, M.R. Carey keeps the engagement up through tension - from start to finish. Indeed, it's one of those tales where you know it's going to go wrong.....and then it doesn't....and it doesn't.....and then it does! and then it doesn't , doesn't, doesn't, and then it does....... a tension roller coaster, and the fact that you know the inevitable path they're all on only adds to the suspense. Cleverly done.
And what an ending! The Girl's final scene has stayed with me long after the detail of the story itself has faded. With The Boy, Carey delivers another blinder.
Excellent listen. 5/5.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
The "Boy on the Bridge" sees MR Carey return to the world of his simply stunning debut "The Girl With All The Gifts". It is reasonably described as a prequel but it most certainly should not be read first! Part of the sheer joy of reading "The Girl" was an extremely cleverly-written voyage of discovery to the very nature of its lead character and her story. Even the genre of the book takes some time to reveal itself. So, while this could be read as a standalone it will take a lot away from any subsequent reading of the original volume. Likewise of course reviews of this one such as this are bound to contain spoilers, read on at your peril!
This book follows a crew of soldiers and scientists sent out from Beacon to see if they can discover ways to combat the cordyceps infestation that has devastated mankind. They are an interesting mix and there are things to recommend this over the original book. The research that has gone into it is naturally deeper and the characters felt more rounded to me. Finty Williams does her usual fine job of narration and the world does maintain consistency and fit well. The epilogue really ties it all together and removed a huge doubt from my mind.
So, I really enjoyed this and would very happily recommend it to anyone who read and enjoyed the first book. I personally don't think that it quite hits the same dizzy heights though. "The Girl With All The Gifts" was extremely original and clever in that it delivered a genuine voyage of discovery. I think this one is very enjoyable but I wasn't left with quite the same sense of wonder and it didn't have the same page-turning qualities. Still, "The Boy" is a very worthy companion to "The Girl" as the epilogue proves.
28 of 35 people found this review helpful
M. R. Carey continues to add a fresh take on a genre that became stale somewhere around Walking Dead Season 6.
Any additional comments?
Beautifully written. Pulls on the heartstrings in so many ways because of the inevitability of the outcome. Just like The Girl with all the Gifts, extrapolates logically from the initial premise. Totally satisfying book.