Series: Monument 14 #2
Author: Emmy Laybourne
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends, Macmillan
Publication date: May 28th, 2013
Target Audience: Young Adult
Genres: Post Apocalyptic
Length: 212 Pages
Find It: Goodreads
Buy It: Amazon|B&N|Book Depository
In this sequel to MONUMENT 14, the group of survivors, originally trapped together in a superstore by a series of escalating disasters, has split in two. Most of the kids are making a desperate run on their recently repaired school bus for the Denver airport where they hope to reunite with their parents, be evacuated to safety, and save their dying friend.
But the world outside is dark and filled with dangerous chemicals that turn people into bloodthirsty monsters, and not all the kids were willing to get on the bus. Left behind in a sanctuary that has already been disturbed once, the remaining kids try to rebuild the community they lost. But when the issues are life and death, love and hate, who can you really trust?
I adored Monument 14 and had high expectations for it’s sequel Sky on Fire. I was not disappointed. At the end of book 1, our original group of fourteen splits into two factions, one staying inside the Greenway and the other taking the bus and heading to Denver. Now we get to see how each of these groups fared and whether they made the “right” choice.
Alex and Dean share the narrating in this book and I love that we get a glimpse into each of their minds. The pacing is perfect…it’s a fairly short read, and it keeps you on the edge of your seat throughout. The language flows without hitch, I’ve heard some complaints that Laybourne dumbs down the language, inserts tedious reminders etc, but I did not find this to be the case. The dialogue and thought processes all seemed correct to me for the ages of the narrators and other characters.
Sky on Fire is definitely a bit darker than Monument 14. There is not as much humor present as there was in the first book, and things do get ugly. Both for the group at the Greenway and those on the road: These children are growing up fast.
I’m just as happy with the relationships and character development in this edition as I was in the first. I loved learning a little bit more about each of them and loved watching how the older kids watched out for the young ones. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I am amazed that Emmy Laybourne can write such a large cast of characters and not only keep them all fresh, individual, and vivid in the readers mind but can also make each one of them so incredibly easy to connect with.
Things almost wrapped up completely at the end of Sky on Fire but we are left with just enough of a loose thread to lead us into the next book. I for one will be awaiting it with bated breath.