Monday, April 19, 2010

Review: The Ask and the Answer by Patrick Ness

Book: The Ask and the Answer by Patrick Ness
Genre: YA SF
Rating: A-
For: Take Another Chance Challenge
From: I bought it! :)

Here's another one I read for this fun challenge. It fulfilled this particular part of the challenge:

Challenge 2: Blogroll Roulette (worth 1 entry)

Find a blogroll at either your book blog or a book blog you like that has at least 15 book blogs on it. Go to and, using the True Random Number Generator, enter the number 1 for the min. and 15 for the max. and then hit generate. Then find the blog that is that number on the blogroll you selected.
Awhile back when I was figuring out what to read for this challenge, the number I got from was six. At the time I counted down on my blogroll and Melissa from One Librarian's Book Reviews appeared sixth. A recent book she had reviewed at that time was The Ask and the Answer, so since I had it and was anxious to read it, that's the book I choose! I ended up reading it much of our vacation last week, and all the way on the long car ride home.
So this book, of course, is the second book after The Knife of Never Letting Go, which means there may be some small spoilers for that first book in this review.

I must say this second book, though just as page turning and gripping as the first, was even more depressing than the first. I think the first one had at least some heart-warming moments and a even a little humor here and there. But this one, wow, it's just dark through and through.

Our heros, Todd and Viola, have ended up in what they thought would be the town of Haven, where they thought they could get help. Turns out, Mayor Prentiss, one evil awful dude, has beaten them there and taken over. What he continues to do with that town and the people in it, and Todd and Viola and their friends, just curdles your blood.

Besides all that things get crazy muddled and it's especially hard for our characters (and even somtimes us the readers) to understand what's really going on and who are the good guys and who are the bad.

It's so frustrating!

Once again, as in the first book, there are some very disturbing scenes. This book, this series I should say, is defiinitly for the older set.

All that being said, I'm still quite taken with it  because I'm so completely wrapped up in the story. I'm fully invested in these characters, and boy, I sure hope the next book has something better in store for them or I just may go crazy! That third book will be called Monsters of Men and will be out in September here in the US.

Bottom line: I liked the book a lot, despite it's dark depressing nature. I didn't like it as much as the first book though.

Patrick Ness's website if you want more info.

Other reviews:

Rhapsody in Books
Things Mean A Lot
Tales of a Capricious Reader
At Home With Books
Stephanie's Confessions of a Book-a-holic


  1. How funny! It must have been a while ago you did that roulette! (Or maybe I've forgotten when I reviewed that book.) Definitely a depressing and still so fascinating read.

  2. I loved the first one, but wasn't quite as taken with the this one. In fact, I think I actually was bored sometimes reading this one, whereas I just raced along Todd and Viola in the first book.

    The third one comes out here in Europe one of these days, and even though I wasn't crazy about the second one, I am most definitely going to read the third one!

  3. Melissa, yes, it was like in January or something when I was getting all organized with the challenges. I decided to still go with that plan, even though it had been so long since I figured it all out.

    Louise: I did read that it was coming out soon in your neck of the woods. You'll have to let us know how it is... and please... I hope you say it's a bit more happy!

  4. Oh ... I very much want to start this series. I think I'll make it a priority for next year. Everyone talks about how different and involving it is. I think you got a very good "roulette" spin!



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