**Fortunately for you, this blog is spoiler-free!Melanie is a very special girl. Dr Caldwell calls her “our little genius”. Every morning, Melanie waits in her cell to be collected for class. When they come for her, Sergeant keeps his gun pointing at her while two of his people strap her into the wheelchair. She thinks they don’t like her. She jokes that she won’t bite, but they don’t laugh. Melanie loves school. She loves learning about spelling and sums and the world outside the classroom and the children’s cells. She tells her favorite teacher all the things she’ll do when she grows up. Melanie doesn’t know why this makes Miss Justineau look sad. The Girl with All the Gifts is a sensational thriller, perfect for fans of Stephen King, Justin Cronin, and Neil Gaiman. Why did you choose this audio book? This was my first time choosing an audio book with another person. My husband and I had a long road trip so we decided to listen to a book together. I have always been a fan of fiction and he is a huge Sci-Fi fan—especially when it comes to post-apocalyptic scenarios. Since the synopsis was pretty vague we were excited to dive in to something we really knew nothing about! What main themes does the author explore? Really the biggest exploration, which is typical of this genre of book, is humanity. When there is a break in the system or an overall loss of it, what do the people left behind do? How do they act towards each other? Where do their morals lie? Jordan and I really love this genre because it isn’t necessarily focused on the horror and/or suspense, which this book does have in heaps, it focuses on the relationships. The main characters all have such different outlooks on what is important to them, the world, each other, that it’s very exciting seeing how they mesh or resist and where the story will go. What did you learn? That listening to a book with another person can really amplify the overall experience. In between chapters, my husband and I would pause the book, discuss our theories, or repeat moments that really spoke to us and why. This was even without the thought of having to do a blog post after! It’s a very thought provoking book! How has the book changed or broadened your perspective? I’d say it took me back. It was a refreshing reminder to remember the awe and wonder of childhood. The majority of the story is told through a child’s perspective. The way she breaks down what is happening to her not only in the physical reality but emotionally was really beautiful at times—no matter the context. That is why this quote stuck out to me:
“Growing up and growing old. Playing. Exploring. Like Pooh and Piglet. And then like the Famous Five. And then like Heidi and Anne of Green Gables. And then like Pandora, opening the great big box of the world and not being afraid, not even caring whether what’s inside is good or bad. Because it’s both. Everything is always both. But you have to open it to find that out.”
It feels very indulgent listening to her descriptions of the world around her and Finty Williams narration helps aid in getting lost in this world with this little girl.Don’t wait for the film, I highly doubt it can be this good. The less you know going in, the more vibrant and engrossing the story.