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Return of the Librarian: Ashes, Ashes by Jo Treggiari

Teen book reviews from your local librarian.

What if just about everything in the world that could go wrong, did?  Climate change, floods, plague.   Ninety-nine percent of the world's population wiped out.  Lucy, 16, lives alone in a human version of a mouse nest in what was Central Park, New York.  She has a book about survival, her father's hunting knife, and a backpack holding a few sentimental items.  One day, while out hauling water, she runs into a pack of dogs (not a friendly bunch, btw).  Help appears in the form of a cute teenage boy, Aidan, who gives her a hand up into a tree.  Lucy hasn't talked to another human being in a year.  She finds she misses contact with other people, and decides to track down the refugee camp he lives in.  It’s populated mostly by old people and kids, and government Sweeper vans come through and periodically kidnap people.   No one knows what happens to those taken, but they don’t come back.  This is a survival story with a little romance thrown in (c’mon, Aidan’s cute, and kind, so of course Lucy develops a tendre for him).  Imagine if your life changed so much that a full meal and a hot bath were better than a day at Disneyland…

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