The characters were all very interesting, although I did get frustrated with Dr. Caldwell and Sargent Parks. Caldwell is over and over only concerned with the children, and when she loses some of them she treats Melanie like property. I know this was part of the book, and that Dr. Caldwell had a purpose and wasn’t supposed to be liked. I realize that she was there to find the answers for the greater good. But, there could have been one moment of humanity from her, one moment, that made me not dislike her, one moment where she learned something from what she had been doing.
Sargent Parks could have been a little more interesting as well. He was the typical military man, only doing what his orders required him to do. Keeping the humans safe, not worrying about the “Hungaries” or zombies, and watching out for the “Junkers” – the men and women who survived the infection and live their lives as scavengers. I do get a little tired of seeing stringent military men, who follow the code, no matter what happens. They always end up the same way in books like this, dead, learning slowly along the way that they don’t have to treat the monsters as they do, because in reality, the monsters are the humans.
The relationship between Melanie and Miss Justineau was interesting, as it did make me wonder where the children who these people are using came from. Justineau was a mother figure to some, and a savior to at least one. The mother/daughter relationship develops in a way, that in the end one wonders who is the mother and who is the daughter.
The idea of the “Hungaries” in this book was interesting, although I would have like a little more backstory, as I didn’t see enough of what made the zombies different, besides a desire to eat human flesh. However, the idea of how these children will develop, and what they will do for the future. It all brings up the question, how will humanity save humanity? In the end will the human race find their humanity, or will they find ways to continue to destroy it.
In today’s society, and the political and moral climate that we currently live in, this book begs the question: how should we treat those who are different? And what steps should we take to protect and save those who can’t always save or protect themselves. It’s a frightening time, and this book, again about an apocalypse, makes one thing about their own humanity.