I was sent a copy of The Wall free for an honest review. Read my review of book 1, The Woodlands, here.
Book: The Wall
Series: The Woodlands, Book # 2
Author: Lauren Nicolle Taylor
Genre: Dystopian sci-fi
Morality Rating: R (for violence)
Readability Rating: 5 stars
Buy it: Amazon
About the Author
Lauren Nicolle Taylor is a 33-year-old mother living in the tiny, lush town of Bridgewater on the other side of the world in Australia. She married her high school sweetheart and has three very boisterous and individual children. She earned a Bachelors degree in Health Sciences with Honours in Obstetrics and Gynecology and majored in Psychology while minoring in Contemporary Australian Writing.
After a disastrous attempt to build her dream house that left her family homeless, She found herself inexplicably drawn to the computer. She started writing, not really knowing where it may lead but ended up, eight weeks later, with the rough draft of The Woodlands.
In 2013, Lauren Nicolle Taylor accepted a publishing contract with Clean Teen Publishing. Her first published novel, The Woodlands, was released on August 30, 2013. The Wall is the second book in The Woodlands Series.
Joseph, wake up, wake up, wake up.
She says it over and over. It’s her plea, her prayer, her mantra. But life doesn’t stop while he’s sleeping. Rosa’s been thrown into a new world, with new rules, and a philosophy that sounds too good to be true. She’s also sure they didn’t rescue her out of the goodness of their hearts. The Survivors must want something from them… but what?
The Wall finds Rosa eagerly entering a new life, yet struggling to keep the demons and ghosts of the past from dragging her backwards. She’s left so many people behind and isn’t sure how to start over. There’s freedom in the Survivors’ world, more than she’d ever dreamed of, but there’s also secrets. The darkest of which pulls Rosa headfirst into a trauma, forcing her to reevaluate her past and pushing her to make a choice that may destroy the tenuous, sewn-together family she’s built on the outside.
Will Rosa make the right choice… or will she lose everything she has fought so hard for?
This book is an interesting placeholder in The Woodlands series. Although not much “plot” happens, the story is full of character development and leads up to what I can only imagine will be a satisfying conclusion in the final book.
Plot: As mentioned before, there wasn’t a whole lot of driving plot in this story. A lot happens, but it isn’t action related. Most of the plot revolves around the changing dynamic between Rosa and the other characters in the story. It isn’t until the last third of the book that the driving plot resumes. I don’t think I would have liked it in a first book in a series, but as the second book, it made for a good bridge to define characters before the plot starts happening again.
Characters: In this book, there were some new characters, but what I liked best is how the relationships between the characters from the first book changed. Some improved and some got worse. I liked that things didn’t remain the same. That is what makes characters feel life-like, in my opinion. All relationships evolve over time.
Setting: I thought the setting was more clearly described in this book than in the previous book. It was easier for me to see where they were in this story (China), than in the previous story (Russia- which I thought was South America for a good portion of the book).
Writing: I think the writing in this book was even better than in the first book. Like most of the stories that I love, much of the story and writing took place inside Rosa’s head. There was a time when the prospective changed to Joseph for a time, which I thought was odd, but it was interesting to see how he viewed the same events. It was actually quite a bit different, which I thought was well done.
I wish The Woodlands series was more well-known, because I like it more than many of the mainstream dystopian series that I have read. I think anyone who is a fan of the dystopian genre should read this series.