Chuck Schuldiner Project

Saturday, November 15, 2014

After the Winter - Mark Healy

I don't get to write nearly enough book reviews, and I always feel a little bit inadequate when I try to tackle this somewhat daunting task. With Mark Healy's After the Winter though, I feel as if I have to really bring things to the next level. Healy's debut novel is an absolute pleasure to read and proves that he is a true mastermind. Set in the same universe as the majestic albums he records with Hibernal After the Winter is an incredibly enjoyable read, deep, well paced, and ultimately reflective of the human condition, Healy has all of the trappings of a great writer.

See, After the Winter has very few of the flaws that mark most authors first novel. While some moments, especially early on in the text, do feel a bit clunky, Healy clearly has a great view of his story. It probably helps that he's been writing stories for over 20 years, this one is simply the first he has chosen to publish. Though After the Winter doesn't really feel like a thriller, it's certainly a page turner. Healy has a great sense of how to set up cliffhangers so that they have the greatest possible impact on the reader. As you wind your way through all sorts of distinct twists and turns you get a sense, not just of Healy's power as a writer but also his talent as a storyteller. As cliché as it might sound, I found it hard to put this book down when I was reading it.

This book, the first in the Silent Earth series, will capture your imagination with powerful themes, majestic descriptions, and a story that is to die for. As you follow the synthetic (A robot formed to look and behave like a human) Brant on his quest to return to his body you are forced to face the grim realities of a post-apocalyptic world. After the Winter is a book that will make you face all sorts of emotional extremes, and as you navigate the terrifying wasteland that defines Healy's Australia you find something of yourself within. Perhaps that is why this book goes down as the stunning debut to what promises to be an illustrious writing career.

Check out After the Winter on Amazon!

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