After the Red Rain by Barry Lyga and Peter Facinelli (what?) is so bad I can’t believe it isn’t a joke.

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After the Red Rain by Barry Lyga and Peter Facinelli (what?) is so bad I can’t believe it isn’t a joke.

After the Red Rain is a laughably bad book, but if I had paid for it, I’m not sure I would have laughed so hard.  I’m not sure why Twilight’s Dr. Cullen (Peter Facinelli) is getting billing with Barry Lyga here.  It might have been a joke they shared or a dare or some crap they sketched out on a cocktail napkin.  Perhaps they were making fun of the way that YA fiction with a dystopian setting will sell no matter how bad it is.  But it hurts Lyga’s credibility as an author.  Maybe this is just a spoof, and I hope so for their sakes, but it is awful. Really.  There has to be something going on because it was originally set to publish last November according to the specs on NetGalley, but it didn’t release until August 4.  It should not have been published at all.

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Goodreads Summary

A postapocalyptic novel with a cinematic twist from New York Times bestseller Barry Lyga, actor Peter Facinelli, and producer Robert DeFranco.

On the ruined planet Earth, where 50 billion people are confined to megacities and resources are scarce, Deedra has been handed a bleak and mundane existence by the Magistrate she works so hard for. But one day she comes across a beautiful boy named Rose struggling to cross the river–a boy with a secretive past and special abilities, who is somehow able to find comfort and life from their dying planet.

 
But just as the two form a bond, it is quickly torn apart after the Magistrate’s son is murdered and Rose becomes the prime suspect. Little do Deedra and Rose know how much their relationship will affect the fate of everyone who lives on the planet.

 
My Thoughts

This is strange and rather boring. The world building is not anything new or exciting. The characters are either bland (Deedra) or so bizarre (Rose) that readers will have a hard time connecting to them, resulting in indifference to their fates. Little beyond Deedra’s discomfort with her scar is universal enough to really draw readers in and allow them to see themselves in her shoes. The decision to develop a hero with such innocuous and weird abilities is just puzzling — Rose’s mutation is, frankly, laughable. I won’t be the only reader thinking about Little Shop of Horrors, especially near the end.   Also, No, you cannot give a character a coat or tea made from the shed or pruned parts of her romantic interest and call it romantic. It is creepy, as is the stalking aspect of Rose’s personality. Pacing, too, is a problem. It is not consistently action packed, nor is the time used to develop a romantic relationship that will engage readers — even Deedra admits she knows little about Rose, so how are readers suppose to care about him? I enjoy this genre, and I wanted this book to work, but After the Red Rain didn’t bring anything new to the table and I had a hard time taking it seriously. I wouldn’t have read past the 30% mark if I hadn’t felt compelled to follow through on the obligation that comes with a request of an ARC.

I received an ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

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About queenbook

When the final bell rings, I stash those messy piles of essays and analysis assignments in a desk drawer and I head home to a pile of good books. My kids and dog eat too many chicken nuggets and the house could be neater, but as long as I get my daily read, I guess we are doing all right. When I was twelve and fifteen and eighteen and twenty, I believed I needed to get out there and do those things I had just been reading about, which ended in disaster, tears, a tattoo that scares me every time I catch a glimpse of it in the mirror, and the realization that some of us are meant for action, and some of us are meant to critique the pace of action in a book. I read primarily YA fiction as I have a rather hulking classroom library and a hundred high school readers to engage daily. Nothing makes me happier than coming to school and finding an impatient teenager waiting by my door to turn in a book and get another one just like it. I adore a good zombie, a medieval princess, or girl assassin (I would like them all in one book if you are a writer looking for some inspiration). I add historical mystery to my wish list a year in advance, and you should get out of my way when the next Outlander book comes out. I have an embarrassing fondness for rock star books, but only if they don’t get too trashy and embarrass me. My favorite book of all time is The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery. My book boyfriends include Gilbert Blythe, Alonzo Wilder, and Jamie Fraser. They are mine and you can’t have them.

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