Thursday, November 11, 2010

Justine's Thoughts: The Ask and the Answer by Patrick Ness

The Ask and the Answer (Chaos Walking #2)
By Patrick Ness

Source: Library
Book Description:

The second thrilling volume in the Chaos Walking trilogy, The Ask and the Answer is a tense, shocking, and deeply moving novel about resistance under the most extreme pressure.

A quote:

A thing worth learning is worth learning well.

Any thoughts (No major spoilers) :

It got me hooked from page one and never failed to keep me on edge till the very last page. The build up, the anticipation, the waiting was entirely dreadful that I could not stop reading. This sequel is where all the action happens. It is where everything starts to become a living nightmare (for Todd and Viola). There is so much that goes on that you feel like expecting for something to happen.

What I loved most was how the story was told both in Todd and Viola’s perspectives. That way, there are two sides in the story, and the reader can almost figure out who is lying and who is not. Having jumped from one perspective to another, Patrick Ness certainly added flow and anxiety at the same time, arousing just the right emotions the reader is suppose to feel.

At many times during the novel, the thought of World War II sprung in my mind. The imprisonment of the Jews, the way they were numbered and forced to labour were very similar to the things President Prentiss ordered to have done. Through the parallels, there also quite some differences. But the overall message is about identity, power, and morals in life.

I was interested in how Viola and Todd separately dealt with the challenges they face, all along showing genuine care for one another. They struggled through tough times, as they faced decisions that were difficult to make without the other by his or her side. By the end, Viola and Todd proved to have grown throughout what they have experienced.

Just as the action was falling, just as everything was gradually settling down (as I had thought), something astonishing happens. And silly me, of course, I should have expected something unexpected. There was no way I could have known, however. Thus, Patrick Ness has done it again.

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