Inhuman by Kat Falls
In the wake of a devastating biological disaster, the United States east of the Mississippi has been abandoned. Now called the Feral Zone, a reference to the virus that turned millions of people into bloodthirsty savages, the entire area is off-limits. The punishment for violating the border is death.
Lane McEvoy can’t imagine why anyone would risk it. She’s grown up in the shadow of the great wall separating east from west, and she’s curious about what’s on the other side – but not that curious. Life in the west is safe and comfortable . . . just how she likes it.
But Lane gets the shock of her life when she learns that someone close to her has crossed into the Feral Zone. And she has little choice but to follow. Lane travels east, completely unprepared for what she finds in the ruins of civilization . . . and afraid to learn whether her humanity will prove her greatest strength or a fatal weakness.
Lane is a kind-hearted girl who has lived a very sheltered life. Once she’s exposed to the harsh, outside world, she actually changes for the better. There are two love interests for Lane. One is a young man who has had a hard life in the Feral Zone, who doesn’t treat others as kindly as Lane. He has a rough exterior with a good heart, but his abrasiveness towards the less fortunate was a turn off. The other was a young guard who is kind from the start and only became more endearing from there. He makes a seemingly out-of-character decision at the end that makes him less attractive, but it’s no surprise I still rooted for him over the other.
I have loved the first couple novels by Kat Falls, and this latest was no exception. This dystopic world is dangerous and exciting. The characters are vivid and engaging. And the story is thrilling and heart-wrenching. The climactic ending leaves off with several loose ends, so I’m hoping for a sequel or a series. I definitely want to see more of this world. After three exceptional releases, I can now say this is one of my favorite YA authors.