*Note to the reader: This review may contain some spoilers. I will try my best to remain spoiler free but can not guarantee it with this novel.*
What am I suppose to say right now? Looking back, I wasn’t fully aware of what I agreed to when accepting this review novel. Mot in a bad way…oh nooooo! This was a great surprise! As I told a few people, I haven’t read a decent thriller in a good while. Then, THEN, I start Children of Wrath. This novel was fast paced from the beginning! I wasn’t instantly drawn into the feeling of being inside Philadelphia East while King talked about C. Diff & hello! I was King for a moment! I would just like to point out that this novel was hidden inside of work bags, meeting supplies, under my desk…it’s amazing that nobody noticed that I wasn’t paying any attention to my responsibilities while devouring this book!
Before we start talking about mutilated cats, and scattered kid brains (this still breaks my heart), let’s talk about something really beautiful in this story. Liz. This woman; she has the biggest heart, & she puts up with so much of Ethan’s crap! She deserves an award. I swear, that boy lied to her so often that it’s astounding that her character was able to grow past that and not break herself. That Ethan though, (I say this as I shake my head in a dramatic way because ugh!) He just does what he wants, and stresses himself out the entire time, with good intentions of course. This just goes to show how perfect Ward’s characters developed. Both main characters, as well as smaller characters, grew alongside each other & with the world.
Then you have the gross parts. I’m putting this in here because it was a major wtf ordeal. There’s a very detailed cat scene with an inexorable. There is blood, and mutilation, & details galore…and I didn’t even flinch! Sure I was a bit grossed out but who in their right mind wouldn’t be?! But then there’s this little gem:
“Oh god. That’s how they euthanize them. They drill holes into their skulls. They shove a bone drill into their brain and spin them around until they’re liquefied. The children are literally lobotomized to death.”
This hit me so hard, when even the cat scene didn’t. It’s a miracle that my stomach didn’t reveal itself to the public of my town, but it felt like that dang cat was clawing me up! It was painful to read scenes like the one above. On the other hand, Ward uses these scenes to really hit home the message behind the story: what will we deem acceptable just because society accepts it? How much will we tolerate? Where do we draw the line of right or wrong?
Children of Wrath is a powerful story, and terrifyingly realistic. Every so often the reader will have the urge to consider if this was their life, if this was their future, if this was the world we lived in. Children of Wrath is a novel that you won’t want to put down. Page after page it beckons the reader to get to the end. Just to see how things end.
I deeply recommend this Novel to everyone! It may have worked its way onto my favorite novels list. It definitely is one of my most beloved Thriller novels (gross scenes and all). I personally can not wait to get my hands on book two, and see where things go from another POV.