Friday, May 04, 2012

Fallout by Ellen Hopkins

Fallout (Crank #3) by Ellen Hopkins

Release Date
: September 14th 2010
Pages: 662
Format: Hardcover
Source: Borrowed
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Also by this Author: Crank (Crank #1); Glass (Crank #2); Identical; Burned (Burned #1)
Buy It: Book Depository
Hunter, Autumn, and Summer—three of Kristina Snow’s five children—live in different homes, with different guardians and different last names. They share only a predisposition for addiction and a host of troubled feelings toward the mother who barely knows them, a mother who has been riding with the monster, crank, for twenty years.
When I read the first two books in this trilogy, Crank and Glass, the final novel Fallout hadn't been released yet. As a result, it unfortunately took me a year and a half to finally pick up the conclusion to this heart-breaking story, based partially on the life of Hopkins' own crank-addicted daughter. With so long between books, part of me wondered if the novel would have the same power as its predecessors retained in my memory. The answer? It definitely does.

Fallout reminds the reader that some of the most tragic consequences of drug addiction are not the ones that happen to the addict. Each of Kristina's children have had their lives irrevocably changed by her decisions, and the grip the monster has on her life. The way that Hopkins deals with this complex and emotional issue is rich and authentic, and with each page I found a little bit of my heart breaking for Hunter, Autumn and Summer.

This was my first time reading a Hopkins novel with three points-of-view, and I was in awe of the way she transitioned between them and the intricate ways the stories came together. Each child showed different consequences, or fallout, of the addiction. Even when the characters made choices I didn't agree with, I couldn't help imaging that things could have been different. Summer's story was especially sad because she spent so much of her life in foster-care, while knowing that her grandparents had adopted her older brother and given him a home– an incredibly painful situation. However, Hunter's voice and story was my favourite to read, possibly because I felt like I already knew him a little from the first two books whereas the girls were both brand new.

My only complaint is that were newspaper articles interspersed with the story that didn't particularly add anything in my opinion, and threw off the pacing since the rest of the book was written in verse. Out of the five Hopkins novels I've read so far, this trilogy is definitely my favourite. Maybe it's the real life inspiration taken from Hopkins' own daughter, but these are such emotionally raw books, and Fallout is no exception. Ultimately, Fallout is a powerful and realistic portrayal of the far-reaching consequences of addiction, told in the clear and poignant verse.

1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed Crank and loved that it was inspiration from her life/daughters life. As much as I love verse, I actually wished these weren't. I should continue with Glass and then Fallout. Glad to hear they get better as you go, that is fantastic.


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