Reviewsday: Chasers by James Phelan

9780733624797The trip of a lifetime just turned into the end of the world. When Jesse crawls out of the wreckage of a subway car and emerges into daylight, he’s greeted by a living nightmare. An unexplained force has destroyed New York City, turning skyscrapers into ash, cutting off all power and communication. Jesse and his new friends, Dave, Anna and Mini are dazed but unhurt. The other survivors are not so lucky. Every human being they encounter is infected, gripped by an unquenchable thirst that drives them to monstrous acts of violence. Somehow, Jesse has to escape. But first, he has to stay alive.

James Phelan begins his Alone series with a bang in this gripping, dystopian, survival novel that keeps it's readers on their toes right up to the last page. It is the first instalment in a brilliant trilogy, each novel as intriguing as the next. It all starts here...

Jesse is a storyteller, and he tells his story where he can, when he can and the best way he knows how... When you're on the run and fearing for your life, what else can you do but fight until the very end? Jesse, the hero of his own survival story, keeps this mentality throughout the entire book and has reader's captivated by his strength and resilience through all of the horrors he faces. Phelan takes you on a psychological journey in Chasers, revelling in your ability to feel for Jesse, for his friends, and for their desperate need to live, but also encouraging you to doubt the narrative, to question their survival or ask the dreaded question, “are they going to make it out alive?”.

Believe me when I say, you will have to re-read a few pages towards the end because the psychologically turning, heart breaking twist throws you for a mile. However, Phelan has achieved this with such grace that you can only love how he did it, and then come back begging for more. Action packed and horrifically realistic this will be a page turner for any young adult reader!

-Amelia