Lynn knows every threat to her pond: drought, a snowless winter, coyotes, and, most importantly, people looking for a drink. She makes sure anyone who comes near the pond leaves thirsty, or doesn’t leave at all. Confident in her own abilities, Lynn has no use for the world beyond the nearby fields and forest. Having a life means dedicating it to survival, and the constant work of gathering wood and water. Having a pond requires the fortitude to protect it, something Mother taught her well during their quiet hours on the rooftop, rifles in hand.
But wisps of smoke on the horizon mean one thing: strangers. The mysterious footprints by the pond, nighttime threats, and gunshots make it all too clear Lynn has exactly what they want, and they won’t stop until they get it….
With evocative, spare language and incredible drama, danger, and romance, debut author Mindy McGinnis depicts one girl’s journey in a barren world not so different than our own. (Synopsis taken from Goodreads)
I was expecting this book to be a dystopian. Not so. It’s a survival book through and through, telling the story of a girl who’s in possession of one of the only water sources around. Lynn is tough. She has to be, in order to survive. She and her mother need the water in that little pond, and they’re constantly competing with the coyotes, and with travelers who think that it would be easy to push two women out of their house.
But then, Lynn’s mother dies, and she’s left all alone, with a neighbor she’s only met once and suspicious-looking smoke in the distance, and she has to figure out how to survive, without the one person who should would have really trusted to teach her.
This book is quite interesting. It deals with a foreseeable future; where all water sources are jealously guarded for fear of dying of dehydration during the summer. The cities are harshly run, but life out in the deserts are even worse. Summer is boiling hot, winter is icy cold. Coyotes are not the shy, skittish creatures we know; they’ll lunge upon any oppertunity for food, even if that food is a human.
This book is tense and atmospheric, all the characters are unique and likeable, and all in all an interesting, entertaining read.