Monument 14: Sky on Fire: A Book Review

Hi!

Sky on Fire (Monument 14, #2)

Monument 14: Sky on Fire by Emmy Laybourne

Summary: Trapped in a superstore by a series of escalating disasters, including a monster hailstorm and terrifying chemical weapons spill, brothers Dean and Alex learned how to survive and worked together with twelve other kids to build a refuge from the chaos. But then strangers appeared, destroying their fragile peace, and bringing both fresh disaster and a glimmer of hope. Knowing that the chemical weapons saturating the air outside will turn him into a bloodthirsty rage monster, Dean decides to stay in the safety of the store with Astrid and some of the younger kids. But their sanctuary has already been breached once. . . Meanwhile, Alex, determined to find their parents, heads out into the darkness and devastation with Niko and some others in a recently repaired school bus. If they can get to Denver International Airport, they might be evacuated to safety. But the outside world is even worse than they expected. . .

{kindly taken from Goodreads}

My Thoughts: really enjoyed the first book in this series, so I was so excited to pick up Monument 14: Sky on Fire! I even moved it up in my pile of books to be read so that I could get to is sooner :) Although I personally didn’t find it as well-written as Book One, I was still satisfied with it. I am really excited to see where the story goes in the last novel!

Sky on Fire opens with Alex, Dean’s brother, explaining what happened in the previous book in his journal/log. I liked that the author started with this because it gave a nice recap of what happened, but the story wasn’t slowed down in any way. From there, the plot gets a little out-of-control. Nothing too terrible, but a lot of the secondary storylines seemed to be thrown in there for more action. I understand the need for more excitement, but angry, ravenous cadets? That was too much for me. I did appreciate that the author worked with the pregnancy story from the first book, and the entire book as a whole was paced nicely. I just found the unnecessary action disappointing; it was good, but it could have been great if there was more emphasis on character development and  the important action scenes, not just fluff.

The characters, unfortunately, weren’t as developed as they were in Book One. This series is most definitely not a standalone – you’ll be lost the moment you start reading this book if you have not read Monument 14 first. I think that because it is a sequel, some of the character development was lost because you know the people, but not all of it should have been gone. I really liked Alex as a narrator. It was a refreshing change from Dean’s sometimes monotonous point of view. Another thing I liked was the ending. Not wanting to give too much away, but it was very sweet, and the supporting characters really shined.

Overall, is the Monument 14 series award-winning? Probably not, but that shouldn’t stop you from reading it. The writing has flaws, the characters aren’t that memorable, and you are most likely wondering why I like the books so much. The real reason is that I just enjoy escaping into an over-the-top world for a few hours! If you are in need of a good series to keep your interest, these books are the way to go. They are hard to put down!

Pros: Strong ending and good narration throughout. The pacing is really good too!

Cons: The action scenes were disappointing, and the character development got lost thought the middle.

Heads Up: The descriptions can get rather gruesome.

Overall: I give it 3 stars {***} and I recommend it for ages 13 and up.

Read my review of the first book, Monument 14, here.

Have a fabulous rest of your day! :)

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