In a Handful of Dust (Not a Drop to Drink, #2) by Mindy McGinnis“That’s life, little one—lots of little maybes and what ifs all lined up in a row. And if you put your mind to following some of them that never came about, you’ll get lost and not find your way back to the way it really is.”
Mindi McGinnis books are exactly my flavor of dark, atmospheric and incredibly intelligent. I loved Not A Drop To Drink - it was one of my favorite novels in 2013. I didnt think Mindy would write a follow-up, but was beyond thrilled to learn about this companion novel. It was just as good (if not better), as Not A Drop To Drink.
These two books sport one amazingly gritty atmosphere. What we have here is a world driven to the brink of extinction by its own inhabitants; humans. Almost all of the worlds water supply is gone, and whatever little theres left is either protected by the government, or guarded by people who wont hesitate to shoot you if you come to close to their precious water source. But Lynns little pond is now the source of danger, rather than hope and life. The water is infected and potentially lethal. And so Lynn makes the decision to abandon her childhood home and leave in search of a new place to live - a new home for Lucy and herself. Together, they will journey to California, where desalinization plants are rumored to be purifying water.
In A Handful of Dust, to me, is a work of utter brilliance. Its a book so skilfully plotted, so thought-provoking and illuminating, its not only mesmerizing but also completely breathtaking. Filled with moments of true heartbreak, beautiful and meaningful thoughts and observations, disturbingly vivid portrayals of a world gone oh-so-very-wrong, its a truly unique and important book. Admittedly, this isnt going to be everyones cup of tea. I find Mindi McGinnis books to be very different from the mainstream YA dystopians and post-apocalyptic thrillers. You dont read her books for cheap thrills and cheesy forbidden romance, you read them for the slow-burning action, brutality, honesty and cathartic emotional load. They are deeper, darker and more densely plotted than your usual YA. Often times they are even shocking and thoroughly devastating. Most of all, they are smart and insightful, with top-notch character development and world-building.
Where Not A Drop To Drink was more about a stationary kind of survival and defending what belongs to you, In A Handful Of Dust is about the challenges of a long and dangerous journey and the hope that lays behind the horizon. I absolutely adored this book. Mindi McGinnis is one of my go-to authors and I know I cant wait for her next book, A Madness So Discreet, to be published.
Review: "In A Handful of Dust," by Mindy McGinnis
In a Handful of Dust
Fans of classic frontier survival stories, as well as readers of dystopian literature, will enjoy this futuristic story about an epic cross-country journey. When her adoptive mother, Lynn, takes Lucy away from their home and friends in order to protect her, Lucy struggles to figure out what home means. The polio that had hobbled her hours before swept through her torso and stilled her movements. Only her pupils could convey the panic as her lungs collapsed. Finally they were still. You can let go now.
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I enjoyed Not A Drop because it surprised me so much! So it sounds like this book has that too, but the long walking portion sounds kind of dull. I'm not a huge fan of traveling stories. I may give this a shot though. I think it's worth reading if you enjoyed Not a Drop, I just had a few issues with it. I think the main problem was that I was still heartbroken from the ending of the first book.
Title: In A Handful of Dust. In this companion to Not a Drop to Drink, Mindy McGinnis thrillingly combines the heart-swelling hope of a journey, the challenges of establishing your own place in the world, and the gripping physical danger of nature in a futuristic frontier. Lucy is sixteen when the sickness hits the settlement.