I really liked this book. For some reason this series has totally gripped me. Its not like it has a lot of action but there's just something about it that I love.
This book picks up right where we left off at the end of "The Line". Rachel has crossed the line into Away. She arrives at the camp with Pathik where she meets Indigo and Malgam, Mrs. Moore's love and son. While there she also meets Nandy, Malgam's wife; and Fisher, a boy a little older than herself. In the book she also find her father, who is alive.
I loved reading all about Away and Pathik's camp in this book. The Others are people who learned to survive in a truly horrible situation. They make due with what they can. They have a "hospital" where injured and sick people are taken and a healer who works on them. They have homes that they have made with mud and stones. The hunt and gather food to eat. They have a school and make due with sitcks, pans and sand for school supplies. They have neighboring camps that are their enemies. They have weird animals like Nipper, who is like a lynx with sheep wool instead of fur. They basically live like the very first ancient people did. But this is in a world where just across the line they have vehicles and technology that hasn't even been invented in our world yet. Its amazing to see the contrast between both worlds.
Its also amazing to see the gifts that some of the Other's have. Pathik has teh ability to sense people's emotions. A girl named Serena, can take people's feeling away. A little boy named Bender can bend metal. Kinec can make things move with his mind. Malgam can see through other people's eyes. Indigo's gift is deadly. All the children go to a class called Usage, where they learn how to control their gift and learn when to use their gift. Above all else, they are taught never to harm or kill anyone with their gift. Reading about these people's powers make me wish they were real cause I'd like to have some!
I really liked Indigo a lot. He's the leader of Pathik's camp and he is very kind. He is friendly, wise and genuinely likes Rachel. He doesn't approve of hurting or killing people with their gifts. He is self-sacrificing and does what is best for his people and family. At first Maglam rubbed me the wrong way because of his reaction to Rachel who was a Reg. Later on he softens to her and is really a kind, gentle, wise man like his father Indigo. Nandy is sweet, caring and tough. Fisher is sneaky, mischievous, funny and knows how to push Pathik's buttons. We learn more about Pathik in this book too. He clearly cares for Rachel but he won't admit it even though he shows it in stuble ways like holding her hand, giving her looks and protecting her. He is just like his grandfather and father, he is kind and caring but can be fierce and protective. He is also wise for his age. He, like Indigo and Maglam is all about doing the right thing. I also liked Rachel in this book as well, who is kind to the Other's and while she may be afraid of their gifts she doesn't show it and doesn't treat the other's like less than human. In fact she is the odd one out in this book, being constantly called a "Reg" by the Others.
Pathik and Rachel's romance is subtle and not the center of the book. Its really cute to read about the little touches, looks and word they exchange that show the reader their feelings to each other, even if they won't admit it. Later on in the book they kiss and while the author alludes to the fact that they both know how they feel about each other, nothing is ever said aloud....at least not yet. But I like the idea of them together and hope that is does happen.
There are some action scenes in the book, like when Rachel, Indigo, Nandy, Pathik and others go to rescue her father from the neighboring camp, the Roberts. The same group who rescued Rachel's father crosses the line again to go get Rachel's mom and Mrs. Moore to bring them to away. Some people die, one of which really pissed me off. The group, mostly intact, crossed back into Away at the end of the book and decided to go to the Island that Indigo had wanted to move to. The book ends off with the group, again mostly intact, on the beach of the island they have not explored yet.
I can't wait for the next book of the series, so I can find out what happens on the Island.
This review is also posted on Spantalian's Book Reviews