Time to read: 2h5m
Date read: Sun 4 Sep 2022 (re-read)
Time for something a little softer…
Ghost is used to being sent out into the Wastes. He scavenges what he can and brings it back to the camp; that’s his job.
It doesn’t mean he has to like it.
When he goes out with his best friend, Rig, to visit the recently emptied Nebraska military base, neither of them are expecting what they find: a lone, sad-looking beastie, who obediently follows them home.
Except One – the creature they’ve found – is more than the average beastie. He’s the rycke, feared by others from his world, because once he’s found something worth protecting, he’ll absolutely destroy anything that attempts to take it from him.
Nature vs. nurture
Ghost and Aury are two of the cutest characters in this whole series. They’re saccarine sweet; for all that Aury could kill anyone who crosses his path, he absolutely won’t, and he works instead to keep Ghost close, to keep his anxieties at bay.
Ghost is terrified of being left alone. He goes out into the Wastes over and over to help the others, but also to protect himself, and he needs someone to stand up for him, to see him and know what needs to be done. He’s also willing to fight for Aury just as Aury’s fought for him, though perhaps with less dangerous consequences.
Plus, we get a whole cast of fun characters in this book, really setting us up for the next few. Lilac is scary and awesome, Anchor is trying to hold everything together, Daisy and Bo are the literal best, Cutter sucks, and Rig is so sweet, doing his best to stand beside Ghost as his best friend.
We’ve also got the underlying thread of Mary and whatever she wants with Aury and the other beasties she’s collecting. Edin saw her, before, so maybe she’ll bring all our characters together.
Also, love Moth. It’s not clear in this book what he’s done to piss Ghost off, but he seems great (aka he hates everyone, but he’s got the skills to back it up).
As usual, Mayne’s worldbuilding is excellent, too. We get more of a peek into the different types of creatures that crossed through into our world in this book. While Wyn and Edin have had very cosmetic differences from humans, there’s something even more alien about Aury, but it’s something that keeps even the other creatures at bay. I love it, and can’t wait to see more different monsters throughout the series!
What did I think?
Still five spooky skulls: 💀💀💀💀💀
I love this book, although it’s probably my least favourite of the series. That’s nothing against it; I just like the events of the others more. Ghost and Aury are the cute, quiet couple (except for all the sex they’re having, of course!) and their story is a nice entry into the lives of the raiders and what we might come to expect in the future.