Before This Is Over by Amanda Hickie
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This is an interesting novel about what happens within a family as a viral epidemic begins to spread around the world, including in their community. This virus essentially traps this family of 4 in their home and this novel tells the story of how they cope with having such little control over what comes next. I found this fascinating … I’m always wondering what we’d do if this sort of epidemic started in our world today. I really enjoyed this novels exploration of this scenario.
I thought the author did a wonderful job covering the physical and emotional impact of this on each of the characters. The writing was well done and I felt like the author was able to weave a feeling of claustrophobia into each word. I kept feeling as if I was being forced into a small space and trying to survive as I read. I was at the grocery store and kept thinking about how this would not be an option … and how I’d feel if the shelves were empty and we were hungry. She made that aspect of fear and frustration come alive for me. The panic of trying to make your food and water last, trying to decide how to treat my neighbors who need help, etc. It just came alive in this book!
The characters aren’t particularly engaging, but they did feel real to me. But, I would guess that might be intentional since we’re seeing people at a desperate time, one that can change how they are and how they experience the world. Perhaps I’d have liked them better if I’d seen any warmth or something from them? I don’t know but they weren’t what I’d call likeable … yet they were understandable.
All in all, this is a good book that I recommend especially if you are interested in the idea of how people react to a worldwide epidemic as it comes closer to their own home and family.
NOTE: Thank you to the publisher for providing an ARC for my honest review.