AudioBook Review: Above by Isla Morley

Posted August 18, 2014 by Melissa in Book Review | 7 Comments


The Book

Title:  Above
Author: Isla Morley
Narrator: Madeleine Maby
Age Range: Young Adult | Adult
Genre: Thriller | Post Apocalyptic
Listening Length: 13 hours and 54 minutes
Length: 384 pages
Publication Date: March 4th 2014
Publisher: Gallery Books | Simon & Schuster
Available Formats: Hardcover, E-book, Audio
Add the book: Goodreads
Buy the book: Amazon | BN | The Book Depository
Source: Publisher for Review – Audio



I am a secret no one is able to tell.

Blythe Hallowell is sixteen when she is abducted by a survivalist and locked away in an aban­doned missile silo in Eudora, Kansas. At first, she focuses frantically on finding a way out, until the harrowing truth of her new existence settles in—the crushing loneliness, the terrifying madness of a captor who believes he is saving her from the end of the world, and the persistent temptation to give up. But nothing prepares Blythe for the burden of raising a child in confinement. Deter­mined to give the boy everything she has lost, she pushes aside the truth about a world he may never see for a myth that just might give mean­ing to their lives below ground. Years later, their lives are ambushed by an event at once promis­ing and devastating. As Blythe’s dream of going home hangs in the balance, she faces the ultimate choice—between survival and freedom.

Book Quote

“Carrying the weight of the world, that’s what I feel like I’m doing when I lift the boy up in my arms. I lay him on my cot and cover him with the quilt, and then force myself back to the kitchen seat so I won’t be tempted to pick him up and hold him some more.”

My Thoughts

The Good:

  • Morley does an amazing job of keeping the reader actively wondering and pondering about the world she’s created.
  • All of the characters are so well fleshed out and multi-dimensional that at times it’s easy for the lines between good and bad, right and wrong to blur.
  • The amount of detail put into describing the silo and Dobbs was exemplary and made her life below that much more realistic and harrowing.
  • Even though I suspected the turn of events that occurred in the 2nd half of the book, I was still somehow surprised…I suppose Morley made me doubt myself and I love that I could never 100% accurately predict what was coming.
  • It’s easy to understand what Blythe is going through and feel for her.  The development of her character alone and how she grew and developed within the constraints of her abduction is amazing.

The Not So Good:

  • I wish that a bit more of her early days, months and years below and been fleshed out to give a better feel for the psychological trauma that she went through.
  • I think that the transition between the 1st half of the book and the second could have been a bit smoother.  It almost felt as if I were reading two books.
  • I had trouble placing the time period for this book.  At times I assumed it was current small town America…but Blythe’s behavior and the details from before her abduction almost felt like it could have been the 50’s.

Final Thoughts:

What is Reality?  What is Myth?  I love books that make me think and keep me guessing.  Above did both.

Narration Notes:
Madeleine Maby was completely believable as Blythe. Her smooth narration allowed me to slip easily into the world Morley created.

Was It Worth My Time?

4 Timepieces

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