- Paperback: 318 pages
- Publisher: Amazon Publishing (1 September 2017)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1542045681
- ISBN-13: 978-1542045681
- Product Dimensions: 14 x 2.5 x 21 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 318 g
- Average Customer Review: 38 customer reviews
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All the Little Children Paperback – 1 Sep 2017
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About the Author
From the Publisher
1. All the Little Children is an apocalyptic story centered on two mothers and their children’s struggle for survival. How does this story differ from other apocalyptic narratives you’ve read?
2. The story offers only Marlene’s point of view. Do you believe Marlene when she says that Joni never judges her? Do you think Marlene envies Joni in any way?
3. The English countryside is often depicted as gentle and bucolic with rolling hills, flowery meadows, and an absence of ferocious or poisonous wildlife. Did the landscape in this novel surprise you?
4. Marlene hints that she feels judged as a working mother, especially when she travels for business and leaves her children at home. She complains that women today don’t have any more choices, “only higher expectations.” Do you agree with Marlene’s statement?
5. Why do you think the author wrote so many animals—domestic and wild—into the story?
6. William Moton, the hermit, says he rescued Billy, but Marlene believes he kidnapped him. What do you think actually happened? Did Marlene really—wrongly, perhaps—use “abandonment as a form of discipline”?
7. Why do you think it was important for Marlene and Joni to hold ceremonies at certain moments? If you were in a similar situation, what rituals might you perform?
8. Jack Ingram and the Wild Things appear to cope better with events than Marlene and Joni. Why do you think that is?
9. The author gives several nods to classical children’s literature including: The Chronicles of Narnia series, The Wind in the Willows, The Tale of Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle, Where the Wild Things Are, Lord of the Flies, Swallows and Amazons, and the Harry Potter series. Did you notice these? Why do you think she included them?
10. Marlene and her group essentially become refugees in their own country. Do you consider Dr. Larsen a hero or rebel? How do you think Marlene and Lola’s relationship might develop after the end of the novel?
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This is edge of your seat stuff and highly original... the story of a normal family camp going completely wrong when terrorists bomb the UK with a virus. After going to the nearest town and realising that most people are dead, the family decides to stay in their camp...
'All the Little Children' is a highly original novel that had me madly swiping as my anxiety escalated as scenes unfolded. I was gripped by this incredible mother who would do anything to protect her children. 'I should jump into the car and lock the door, I thought. I should scream for help. Go on, scream—scream! Warn the children.'
It is well written in its haunting descriptions that feel utterly plausible. 5 riveting stars...
The plot was strong, full of imagery and quite terrifyingly realistic. Two mothers and their children (along with others) were camping in Shropshire UK when civilisation as we know it breaks down and chaos reigns.
Jo's writing was riviting and the pacing was fast, as expected for this genre. I felt on tenterhooks with each challenge, or, as each new danger confronted them. The characters were often panicked and sometimes made dumb decisions which added to the realism, imo (I could certainly relate to their anxiety-based behaviours).
The reason I dropped off a star was because All the Little Children ended on a cliffhanger and I can only assume there will be a sequel because the ending implies an ongoing story. I'm not a fan of serials, so I'm pretty miffed and may not have invested my time had I known beforehand. At least I'd like the choice.
The book was, however, a well-thought-out and impactful disaster narrative.
Although at first I didn't like main character, Marlene, too much. It was not easy to sympathise or empathise with her, and seeing as she is also the first person narrator, it made it quite hard to get into the book. (For that reason I would have given it four and a half stars, but the website won't let me give half stars.)
However, the story was very good so I kept reading, and by the end of the book Marlene's character has changed. And I think that is what the book is really all about. In fact the author has said (on Goodreads) that the story is Marlene's 'coming-of-age' as a mother. Actually all of the characters change for the better by the end of the book.
Aside from all that, it is a very good apocalyptic survival story that is gripping, suspenseful and intriguing. I'm hoping there will be a sequel. Although the author has said she had no plans for one, but the ending leaves it open for one.
However, I was pulled into the story. An apocalyptic disaster in Britain kills most of the population via a man made virus. The story centres around two women and their respective children, who are saved by having been camping in the forest when it it. They meet up with a pile of children who they help to keep safe, with a lot of pain and disaster on the way.
A great story.
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