The Book: Last week I listened to the first book in the sequel to John Marsden's Tomorrow series. While I Live starts the Ellie Chronicles trilogy. Although this quick review doesn't contain spoilers for the novel, it does assume you've read the previous books.
The story picks up a few months after the war ended, when Ellie and everyone else who survived are trying to adjust to the new normal. As I mentioned in my reviews of the other books about Ellie, Marsden's characterizations of teens are spot-on and are at the heart of why these books are among my all-time favorites.
In postwar Australia, some of Ellie's friends are doing well. Others, however, have moments of post-traumatic stress or miss the rush of living in danger. A few the gang have been reunited with their parents, but some were orphaned in the war and now live independently or with distant relatives.
Just about the time Ellie is letting herself relax, the enemy begins border raids, randomly killing, stealing, or generally wreaking havoc. When this violence hits close to home, Ellie is forced to decide just what kind of person she is: Should she join the rebels who continue to fight the enemy or should she concentrate on making the best life she can for herself and those she loves?
The Tea: Even though it's supposedly spring, all the rain we've had over the last month has made me reach for the tea kettle. I've just discovered Stash Tea's Chai White. I love their black chai, but the white is good competition. Here's how the company describes it: "a lighter version of the traditional Chai. By blending premium white tea with cinnamon, whole cloves, cardamom and ginger root, we created a flavorful and spicy tea that goes well with milk and sugar and may be enjoyed any time of the day." I drink my tea black, but the spicy aroma and warming flavors truly take the damp out of my bones.
The Assessment: Now that the war is over and the shops are opening again, Ellie's little town is getting its fair share of more upscale coffee and tea shops. She may very well be able to by white chai tea. But I'd bet her financial situation is such that she's buying standard grocery store tea. On the other hand, if she had a taste of this chai, she'd likely be hooked.
A Note on the Audio: While I Live (Bolinda; 9 hr, 29 min) is read by the great Suzi Dougherty. She is an amazing narrator for this series and portrays Ellie and and her friends just perfectly. Dougherty makes the books come alive.
What About You? Whether you're looking forward to warmer weather or preparing yourself for winter, what are you drinking this week? And what's on the top of your reading list?
Thursday Tea is the brainchild of Anastasia at Birdbrain(ed) Book Blog.
Source: Review (see review policy).
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