Monday, 26 March 2012

Review: Apocalypse Moon by M.G. Harris (Joshua Files Book 5)

Something is very wrong with the 2012 Plan. Is it really on course to save the planet from the gigantic Electro-Magnetic Pulse that's due to shatter civilisation at the end of the year? After a narrow escape from US government agents Josh decides to risk his own life on a daring mission - a leap forward in time to discover the truth about 2012. He's jumped ahead far enough to glimpse a post-apocalyptic world in collapse. And to realise - it could be his destiny to stay.

I'm going to start this review with a long overdue apology to M.G. Harris. Just over a year ago M.G. very kindly sent me a signed proof of the fourth Joshua Files Book, Dark Parallel. I read it, loved it, but never posted a review of it on The Book Zone. Believe me, I wanted to, and I lost count of the number of times I started to write something and then gave up. Dark Parallel really messed with my head - if you haven't read it then it sees Josh and Ixchel travelling through time, finding themselves in various parallel timelines. Not only did it mess with my head, but it also answers a number of the questions created in the earlier three Joshua Files books, and leaves many more for the final instalment, and I just could not come up with a review that did not contain a long list of spoilers.

I did however make a promise to myself that I would review Apocalypse Moon, come what may. However, having finished it yesterday afternoon I am still in something of a quandry. This is the final book in the series. It is the book that ties off all the loose ends and answers all the questions readers have been pondering for the past four years. So yet again I am left with the unenviable task of writing a spoiler-free review. With this in mind I have decided to make this brief, and bullet point the key aspects, as they come to me, in no particular order:
  • I loved it. It is the perfect ending to a series that I was enjoying long before I started The Book Zone.
  • The black gel sleeve is gorgeous. I have to admit, I initially had my doubts, but I take them all back. It is perfect!
  • Every question is answered (at least every question I had was answered).
  • We finally find out the identity of Arcadio.
  • Josh travels into the future and we find out what happens to the world after the Electro-Magnetic Pulse hits. And it's scary!
  • We finally find out the mystery surrounding the disapperance of Blanco Vigores.
  • We discover the secret behind the Bakab gene and what that means for Josh, his friends, and the future of the planet Earth.
  • We are treated to even more twists and turns, and shock revelations about secondary characters and the part they may have to play in the 2012 plan.
I would be absolutely amazed if there is a single Joshua Files fan out there who ends up feeling disappointed on finishing this book. I am a little sad that we have come to the end of Josh's story, but also elated that it ends with such a great final instalment.

Having started with an apology, I'm going to end this review with a note of thanks to M.G. for mentioning me in her acknowledgements at the end of Apocalypse Moon. I started reading the series long before I started The Book Zone, and when I first picked up that stunning orange day-go gel covered book in Bracknell Waterstones I never dreamed that four years later my name would be printed inside the last book in the series. I am very flattered, and rather humbled by this kind gesture by M.G.

Apocalypse Moon is due to be published on 5th April (in its lovely black gel sleeve). My thanks go the good people at Scholastic who sent me a copy to review.