Title: The Last Orphans
Publisher: Clean Teen Publishing
Series: The Last Orphans Series #1
Author: N.W. Harris
To Be Published: October 17th, 2014
Page Count: 274
Genre: YA Apocalyptic Sci-Fi
Content Warning: Violence, adult content, minor language
Age Recommendation: 16+
One horrifying day will change the life of sixteen-year-old Shane Tucker and every other kid in the world.
In a span of mere hours, the entire adult population is decimated, leaving their children behind to fend for themselves and deal with the horrific aftermath of the freak occurrence. As one of the newly made elders in his small town, Shane finds himself taking on the role of caretaker for a large group of juvenile survivors. One who just happens to be Kelly Douglas—an out-of-his-league classmate—who, on any other day, would have never given Shane a second glance.
Together, they begin their quest to find out why all of the adults were slaughtered. What they find is even more horrifying than anything they could have expected—the annihilation of the adults was only the beginning. Shane and his friends are not the unlucky survivors left to inherit this new, messed-up planet. No, they are its next victims. There is an unknown power out there, and it won’t stop until every person in the world is dead.
A spine-tingling adventure that will have you gasping for breath all the way until the last page, The Last Orphans is the first book in an all-new apocalyptic series.
About the Author
N.W. Harris published his first novel—Joshua’s Tree—in 2013. It was no wonder that with his wild imagination and passion for all things word related, that N.W. Harris was named a quarter finalist in Amazon’s Break Through Novel Award Contest. In early 2014, N.W. Harris joined the ranks with Clean Teen Publishing when they signed his new young adult apocalyptic adventure series—The Last Orphans.
In addition to writing, N.W. Harris has been a submarine sailor, nurse, and business owner. His studies have included biology, anthropology, and medicine at UCSB and SUNY Buffalo. He is an active member of SCBWI and lives in sunny southern California with his beautiful wife and two perfect children. He writes like he reads, constantly.
“Help!” A girl’s hysterical voice ripped through his viscous daze like a bullet through a soda can. “Can you please? Help!”
The voice was pitched with agony and grief, but also very familiar.
Shane pivoted, the weight of his aunt’s nightmarish demise making it hard to move.
Two girls ran up the Douglas’ long, gravel driveway toward him. The taller one’s tangled, blonde hair billowed behind her. She wore cutoff blue jeans and a baggy, white T-shirt with crimson paint smeared across her chest. She dragged a shorter version of herself by the hand behind her as she ran. It took a second for Shane to register who it was.
“Kelly?” he shouted, his voice hoarse with shock. Struggling to break free of the catatonic state threatening to turn him into stone, he jogged heavily down the driveway to meet her.
“They killed my dad and my mom!” she shrieked, her eyes wild and her gaze darting like she expected some horror to jump out of the fields and attack her. “They went berserk and trampled them!”
“Wait—slow down.” Shane grabbed her shoulders to steady her. Her distress tore his mind away from the despair seeping through every part of his body, starving him for breath and welding his joints together. “Who killed your parents?” He realized the red on her clothes was fresh blood.
J. Hooligan's Review
First of all, I want it known that my fear of the wasp has grown substantially because if this book. I had a wee panicked moment just yesterday because of it. It's always great when reading a book messes with your every day life.
The story behind The Last Orphans was pretty good, also terrifying. It seemed like it was actually possible, which was one of the reasons why I enjoyed this book.
At the same time, the characters all seemed a bit off. They were stereotypical, and I can't say I connected with a single one of them.
I did feel the story was strong enough that it helped counter a lot of the issues with the characters.
I am giving The Last Orphans 3/5 Platypires
You don't have a chance to breathe! Everything happens fast and hard, and I found myself gripping my Kindle, eyes wide and holding my breath. I was so lost in the story that I forgot to put it down until I was finished, except to message some reader friends to say "OHMAIGAWD!". You're speeding along with the characters, wondering what's going to happen next, when BAM! The author, who I imagine twirling a villain style mustache and cackling evilly, says "Wait, dear reader! I need a moment to rip your heart out and make you watch as I stomp on it!" Tears, I tell you!
This is going on my re-read list, as well as my top 10 for this year. I can't wait for the next installment, I'm going to be going crazy wondering what happens next!
Bob says: 5 strong Platypires!
This book takes off from the very first chapter and maintains a decent pace in keeping up the plot of the story. What I thought was done really well is the characters, especially considering that most of them are teenagers. In particular, Aaron was developed really well, and he does his best in a situation that is far outside the norm. It was interesting to see his progression from the beginning of the book to the end, and how he became a leader of survivors. Another character that stood out in my mind was Nat. There's one moment that made me laugh a little at her observations, and I also liked her sister Kelly, along with Laura.
I really enjoyed this book, and recommend it to those who enjoy apocalyptic fiction. My rating is 5/5 Platypires.