It Never Rains But It Pours
I love my job, it gives me the opportunity to get hold of advanced copies of a variety of books. After having read book one in this series, The Rain, I had my fingers crossed for this one and I may have done a little jig when I got this one.
So, The Storm by Virginia Bergin...
Ruby's isolation has taken its toll. She's done some sensible things with her time. The library has been a source of research, and she's picked up some handy pointers on car maintenance and survival techniques. The rest of her time is less productive. “The thing about going a bit mental is it's hard to realise that's what's happening.”
Planet Ruby is a lonely place, and since her first tale she now has no mission apart from to stay put and wait. As you read on, the question that comes to you is how long has she been waiting? It's clear that she is not coping. She's cried the pain away and now she's crying because of the stress. She's crazed and her memory is some what patchy, and this part of the book is quite challenging to read. I had to read some parts twice, as Ruby gets “chatty” I found myself almost speed reading at the speed I imagined her to be talking... way too fast to make sense. In the first book it was easier to have some idea of time but in this one because she's lost track, so do you.
Her solitude can explain most of her behaviour, the state of her house and her erratic lifestyle more than likely contribute to the rest. She's become wary of strangers, which probably started when she watched her step-dad die at the hand of a stranger in The Rain. Ruby's rehabilitation comes with the help of her least liked person... even your enemy is a friend if they're not a stranger.
The reappearance of her frienemy finally gives her what she needs to get back on her feet, a horribly big dose of reality. The phrase, the grass is always greener, is never so clear until she gets into the army base and the horrible truth comes to light. That's when you get that moment that makes you think... "I can't believe I didn't think of that in the first place". You get so caught up in her discovery and anger that you don't really notice that she's outside... and it's raining. It's not really a surprise though, as it's on the cover, you're waiting for that moment. Turns out she isn't just lucky as she appears in the first book.
Unfortunately she hasn't become any more likeable in this second instalment. If I was a friend or loved one she was coming to rescue I'd be pretty irritated that she stopped on the way to dye her hair, get some new clothes and paint her nails. Despite the reality check at the beginning of the book and her brush with serious personal danger she hasn't learnt much more in the way of common sense at all through this disaster. She still can't always see further than herself, and manages to accidentally endanger a variety of people she meets along the way.
After reading the first book I was really excited to read this one. It was another enjoyable one, but a bit more difficult to get through than the first. Ruby can be a tad challenging! There are a few things that are left unanswered in the end, but after the revelation from The Rain to The Storm it just gives me things to think over while I hope for a third in the series!