Author: Jonathan Maas
Length: 502 pages
Genre: Post-Apocalyptic Fiction
Type of Book: Softcover
Release Date: March 22, 2015
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
* I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.
This is the second book that I have read written by author: Jonathan Maas. The two books are not related in any way and are stand-alone novels. The first book I read was “Spanners: Fountain of Youth” which was amazing. Because of how much I enjoyed that book, I was eager to read more titles by the same author, and he did not disappoint. “Flare” is easily one of the best post-apocalyptic books I have read and is a stand-out in a field that is crowded with mediocrity.
A solar flare not only hits the Earth, but it continues to scorch and burn continuously with no sign that it will ever end. Billions died in the initial flare since anyone exposed to the sun whether outdoors or even inside through their windows fell victim to the sun’s incredible power.
Those who were lucky enough to survive the initial solar flare quickly realize that their lives and their world will never be the same.
I have read other post-apocalyptic novels in which a solar flare knocks out the planet’s electrical grids and any devices (including most post-1980 vehicles) that had relied on computers to run. However, this book is unique in that the solar flare was not a single, one-time-only event. The flare is ongoing and every day as soon as the sun begins to rise, survivors are forced to retreat into light-tight rooms or shelters.
Survivors face a much different world from the one they have always known. Imagine never again seeing the sunshine and never being able to feel it’s warmth of your face. In fact, the sun has become your enemy and it is deadly. Imagine that the only time you can safely leave your shelter is at night.
Now, think about the fact that the flare put an end to electricity. This means that when you are finally able to venture outside, you do so to a world almost completely devoid of light. Flashlights are a necessity and evil could easily sneak up on you in the darkness. What kind of life would you be able to have?
This book follows the trials and tribulations of two very different flare survivors. The tale switches back from Zeke’s story to Ash’s story.
These two men could not be more different. Ash is Caucasian and is a certified genius who is deeply troubled. Zeke’s is an African American with deep black skin that helps him blend in with the night.
Both Ash and Zeke’s somehow learn that there is a rumour of a safe haven from the flare called “Salvation” and each sets out on journey to find it.
“To get there they must each travel through ravaged towns and over hundreds of miles of charred earth, and must do so under a sky waiting to kill them with every sunrise.”
“But with the world’s population dying off and humanity getting more and more violent as the days pass, their paths are destined to collide, because this unknown and unseen place might be the only hope remaining.”
Jon Maas has created characters that are easy to relate to. You would think that a genius like Ash would come across as a pompous jerk, but this could not be farther from the truth. In fact, readers will be drawn to Ash despite his intelligence and just about every reader should be able to relate to him in some small way.
Zeke is an interesting character and it is impossible not to be drawn into his story. This takes skill on behalf of the author since Zeke is almost completely mute.
I absolutely LOVED this book. The author’s attention to detail and his seemingly instinctive grasp of both the good and bad within all men makes this book a read that will stay with you long after you finish reading it.
FLARE is 502 pages long and yet it never seems to lag. It is a MUST READ for lovers of post-apocalyptic fiction. This book is NOT TO BE MISSED.
Jon Maas has proved with the writing of FLARE that he is an author to watch. I absolutely can’t wait to read more books by this talented author.
I would rate this as 6 stars if it were possible. As it is, I give it the highest rating possible which is 5 out of 5 stars. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Jon Maas was born in New Haven, Connecticut and grew up in San Antonio, Texas. After graduating from Stanford University with degrees in Biology and History, he’s earned a living as a Musician, Peace Corps Volunteer, Standup Comedian, TV Producer and Web Designer.
His first novel, “City of Gods – Hellenica” has been well received, and his second book, ‘Spanners: The Fountain of Youth’ won the award for ‘Best Young Adult Fiction’ at the 2014 San Francisco Book Festival, as well as ‘Best Science Fiction’ at the 2015 IndieReader Discovery awards.
‘Spanners: The Fountain of Youth’ is the sequel to the independent movie ‘Spanners,’ which is currently on the film festival circuit – http://www.spannersthemovie.com .
“Flare” is his third book. Jon Maas is currently working on another book, which he hopes to release by December 2015.
He writes on his bus commute to and from work, and I am really glad he does.
To learn more about this astoundingly talented author visit http://www.jonmaas.com
Follow Jon Maas on Twitter @jonmaas78