The Children’s Book Review | January 29, 2018
Written by Joe Beernink
Age Range: 14 and up
Paperback: 266 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (2017)
What to expect: Post-apocalyptic, civil unrest, survival, outdoors
Joe Beernink’s follow-up to his debut, NOWHERE WILD, is a tense, post-apocalyptic thriller that will keep you rushing through the pages until the twisty end.
Izzy survived the forest with her abuser, Rick. Miraculously, she and Jake have made it back to their hometown and even found her sister. But it’s not as happy a homecoming as they would have hoped. It turns out the forest is not the only place full of danger. The town has split along racial lines, pushing Jake and the other Native American’s to the far side of town. Violence threatens at every corner, and the fighting between the two communities makes living in the city nearly impossible. Jake and Izzy try to find a way to stop the impending violence that could kill the people that the plague spared. But can they push back against the men who run the city without getting killed in the process?
Beernink is an enormously talented author. Each page of NOWHERE HOME is tense, each chapter a question. What will happen to these two teens amid even more dangers? Fans of television shows like THE WALKING DEAD will eat up Beernink’s terrifying world. The book doesn’t shy away from tough questions and issues. There’s quite a bit of violence, racism and repercussions from Izzy’s previous sexual assault. However, the book deals with all of the subjects well. In fact, many adults would find the series intriguing for the honesty and bald-faced look at these uncomfortable subjects. It’s something YA fiction has done really well with lately, and Beernink has really stepped up to the plate with this unflinching novel.
At its heart, this is a story of survival. Jake and Izzy are imperfect, sympathetic protagonists that a reader can truly empathize with. Like other post-apocalyptic fiction, it paints a realistically alarming future if a flu pandemic wiped out half the population. But the break-neck pace and pitch-perfect voice of Izzy make this novel stand out from the pack.
Book three, NOWHERE ROAD, will be released sometime in 2019.
About Joe Beernink
Read our exclusive interview: Author Joe Beernink Discusses ‘Nowhere Wild’ and Writing Books
Nowhere Home, by Joe Beernink, was reviewed by Denise Mealy. Discover more books like Nowhere Home by following along with our reviews and articles tagged with Adventure, Survival, Thrillers, and Young Adult Fiction.