The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf
(The Tribe #1)
Interesting for its post-apocalyptic world with citizens bound into cities and folks with powers considered dangerous and in between: monsters such as sabre tooth cats and dinosaurs.
Clever for the ways in which Ashala and her Tribe of illegal powered kids pull off daring rescues and fool the authorities.
Culturally rich for Ashala’s connection to the Serpent Grandfather and the literal dreaming (called sleepwalking) here as well as her connection to the trees/Firstwood.
But not to my taste. This reads like a younger YA in its emotional simplicity: the good are good. The traitors are selfish, and the bad guys are just evil for the sake of being evil or crazy. The beginning made me a little skittish, as it showed Ashala being drawn against her will to one of the guards who have captured her from her beloved forest and brought her to be tortured by the bad guys. (it turns out not to be as bad as it sounds, but it also took a while to figure that out).
Ashala is a bit too good in this novel, a bit too chosen. And so for my own taste, not a character I could truly deeply connect with. It’s also hard to pull off extended backflashes and extended dreaming well…and in this book there is a lot of both which also made it hard to put down and then pick up and know what was happening.
So I might have veered actually a little more towards 3.5 stars, but in the end, I think it was my own preferences that made the simple feel to the narrative not satisfying for me rather than the quality of the writing.