Review: Charlinder’s Walk by Alyson Miers & Giveaway

charlinder's walk book coverPublisher: CreateSpace
ISBN: 978-1466443839
Pages: 492
Format: Paperback
Rating: 3
Age recommendation: Young adult, Adult

In 2012, the Plague ended the world as we know it. In 2130, Charlinder wants to know why. The origin of the disease remains a mystery. Their ignorance of its provenance fuels a growing schism that threatens to destroy the peace that the survivors’ descendants have built. Unwilling to wait for matters to get any worse, he decides to travel to where the Plague first appeared and find out the truth—which means walking across three continents before returning home. Charlinder has never been more than ten miles from home, has never heard anyone speak a foreign language, and he’s going it alone. He survives thousands of miles of everything from near-starvation to near-madness before he meets Gentiola. By then he’s so exhausted that the story she offers to tell seems like little more than a diversion…until he hears it. Nothing could have prepared him for what he learns from her, and no one ever told him: be careful what you wish for. The world is a much bigger place than Charlinder knew, and his place in it is a question he never asked before.

Review

Charlinder’s Walk sounds like the typical dystopian novel, but it is more than typical. It makes “heavy” reading, especially with thought-provoking themes. For example, the fact that mothers aren’t sure who the fathers of their children are and the absence of the biological father’s role in the upbringing of a child. The issues tackled in Charlinder’s Walk are ones that usually bring about a division of opinions.

Charlinder’s Walk isn’t your typical coming-of-age novel either. He is a schoolteacher who decided to go on a quest for the truth behind the plague which destroyed the world. There is mystery, romance, intrigue all thrown in the story. I liked the mystery and intrigue, but I found the romance… distasteful. I’m one who enjoys romance novels, but the romance in this one left me squirming.

The revelation of the truth was harsh. It seems almost unbelievable at first. But then, the issues about society in the novel aren’t pleasant as well. Charlinder’s Walk is definitely a novel that goes all out at its approach of issues that aren’t in the comfort zone. After learning the truth, I couldn’t help but wonder if ignorance would be better, or bliss as they say.

We aren’t given an in-depth look in the characters, with the exception of Charlinder and Gentiola. I had expected Gentiola to be a character I could like but I was wrong. She rubbed me the wrong way. My reaction to Charlinder’s journey home and away from Gentiola was “finally!”. I don’t usually dislike characters, unless they are the bad guys, and I couldn’t help disliking Gentiola. I don’t know how to describe it. She just wasn’t… likeable for me. Human characters aside, the non-human one was more than likeable. I’d call Queen Anne’s Lace, Charlinder’s travel companion, “adorable” for lack of a better word.

What I like about Charlinder’s Walk is that it doesn’t force you into thinking a certain way, it doesn’t propagate. It does, however, bring up issues and cause you to view them at different angles. Along the way, you’ll decide (or judge) your position on those issues. Charlinder’s Walk causes one to think, rather than make one view strongly prominent than the other.

Novel Publicity Blog Tour Notes:

Wanna win a $50 gift card or an autographed copy of Charlinder’s Walk? Well, there are two ways to enter…

  1. Leave a comment on my blog. One random commenter during this tour will win a $50 gift card. For the full list of participating blogs, visit the official Charlinder’s Walk tour page.
  2. Enter the Rafflecopter contest! You can enter on the official Charlinder’s Walk tour page.

alyson miers authorAbout the author: Alyson Miers was born into a family of compulsive readers and thought it would be fun to get on the other side of the words. She attended Salisbury University, where she majored in English Creative Writing for some reason, and minored in Gender Studies. In 2006, she did the only thing a 25-year-old with a B.A. in English can do to pay the rent: joined the Peace Corps. At her assignment of teaching English in Albania, she learned the joys of culture shock, language barriers and being the only foreigner on the street, and got Charlinder off the ground. She brought home a completed first draft in 2008 and, between doing a lot of other stuff such as writing two other books, she managed to ready it for publication in 2011. She regularly shoots her mouth off at her blog, The Monster’s Ink, when she isn’t writing fiction or holding down her day job. She lives in Maryland with her computer and a lot of yarn. Connect with Alyson on her website,blog, Facebook,Twitter or GoodReads.

Get Charlinder’s Walk on Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the author. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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Posted on May 18, 2012, in Book Reviews, Giveaways and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 12 Comments.

  1. Thanks so much for a multi-faceted and detailed review! I found it very thoughtful 🙂

  2. Heavy reading..hmm..should pick this up sometime.

    pragyasharma_100@yahoo.co.in

  3. Great review, Evangeline (and nice new blog, btw). I love books that allow the reader to think without forcing the author’s opinions upon him or her. I’m reading Charlinder’s Walk now and am really enjoying it–I find Alyson has a rather rye sense of humor at times, which really spices the novel up!

    Thanks for being part of this tour. Please remember to cross-post on Amazon and GoodReads 😀

    • Hi Emlyn, thanks! I’m still trying to return to “normal” after the move back to WordPress. I like such books, too. It’s nice reading a book that isn’t preachy or trying to enforce some kind of moral standing. You’re welcome, and thanks for the reminder (I totally forgot)!

  4. Hi, Evangeline. I see that my novel was a lot to take in, and I appreciate your going the distance. Heavy fiction is what I do.

  5. Catherine Lee

    Often, I prefer my pleasure reading to be “light and fluffy.” BUT, when I pick up a post-apocalyptic title, like The Stand, The Road, or World War Z, I don’t really expect lightweight reading!

    • Yeah, of course. Just that… this was pretty unexpected. Maybe it’s because I don’t usually read post-apocalyptic titles. Still, this was a good experience and I pretty much enjoyed it.

  6. Thanks for the international giveaway!!

    sweety225(at)rocketmail(dot)com

  7. Great blog post! Thank you for the chance to win a book like this –

    scarlettkitty at hotmail dot com

  8. This sounds like a book I would really enjoy!

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