21 March 2014

No Safety in Numbers by Dayna Lorentz

No Safety in Numbers by Dayna Lorentz is the first in a series centered around a group of people trapped in a mall after what appears to be a biological bomb is found near the parking garage. Four separate characters alternate narrating the story: Marco, a busboy with a minor chip on his shoulder; Ryan, a footballer whose personality shifts depending on who he is currently with; Lexi, a Senator's daughter with a self-confidence problem; and Shay, a girl who crushes a wee bit too hard and fast.

I am quite the fan of apocalyptic, survival, etc. type fiction, so I am definitely predisposed to like this story. Having hundreds, more like thousands as I guess it's a really big mall, of people trapped together with no way out is seriously my cup of tea. Unfortunately nothing much happened. So much time is spent on "teenage issues" that I never felt the panic, the terror, the desperation. Instead I remember reading about confidence issues, clothing, mean girls, hot boys, football, jock v. non-jock bullying, etc. I love character development, but the events which reveal the personality of a character should be more closely tied to the conflict; it should have more to do with the action happening and less to do with the stereotyped issues of the age of the character. What I did learn about the characters I didn't much like either. Ryan's, I think, supposed to come across as a tough football player with a heart of gold, but honestly, to me, he comes across like a two-faced scaredy-cat. Marco, the bullied, loses my sympathy quickly with his poor, poor pitiful me attitude. Lexi's desire to be not-at-all like herself and popular is saddening. And Shay's sudden, ridiculous, gigantic crush on Ryan is entirely due to his looks and hence, maddening. Alas, I am old.

After all of that, you would assume I pretty much hated the book, but I didn't. I am even about one-third of the way through the second in the series. Despite how much I didn't connect with this book, I still had a strong desire to see where things were heading. There is a lot of potential here for an exciting look at humanity (a la Lord of the Flies) but I am a bit concerned that everything will remain a bit too light and fluffy and oh-my-god-do-you-like-think-he-wants-to-make-out.


  1. I can't remember the plot of Bel Canto very much except that maybe it was like this except for adults. And undoubtedly way better. LOL And I agree - I hate when crushes based on looks ensue, but I seem to recall doing the same thing myself, which doesn't make it any less stupid! LOL

  2. It sounds really good, but sorry that it didn't live up to the excitement that it promised. I too like survival, post-apocalyptic stories, but it has to work for me.


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