Wayward by Blake Crouch

Welcome to Wayward Pines, population 461. Nestled amidst picture-perfect mountains, the idyllic town is a modern-day Eden…except for the electrified fence and razor wire, snipers scoping everything 24/7, and the relentless surveillance tracking each word and gesture.None of the residents know how they got here. They are told where to work, how to live, and who to marry. 17920254Some believe they are dead. Others think they’re trapped in an unfathomable experiment. Everyone secretly dreams of leaving, but those who dare face a terrifying surprise.

Ethan Burke has seen the world beyond. He’s sheriff, and one of the few who knows the truth—Wayward Pines isn’t just a town. And what lies on the other side of the fence is a nightmare beyond anyone’s imagining. – Amazon.com

This was my kind of book – part sci-fi, part horror, part murder mystery, people in situations with no explanation of how they got there – I’m totally in.  When I received this book from NetGalley, I didn’t realize it was the second book in a series, but I didn’t have any trouble after the first twenty pages or so.  And I’m definitely planning on reading the first book and getting the third when it comes out next year.

As I was reading this book, a saying kept running through my head:  One man’s heaven is another man’s hell.  Some of the people inside the fence, with almost every aspect of their life dictated, wanted nothing more than to get out.  A man who had been sent out years earlier to collect information just wanted to get back in so he could have a “normal” life and feel safe again.  I guess the grass is always greener and it’s all about what you can live with and tolerate.

I really liked Ethan Burke.  As sheriff, he knew the truth about what was going on in the town, and yet still had to keep it from everyone, including his wife and son.  He had to play both sides and did it very well.  Ethan was intelligent, loyal to his beliefs, and just downright ballsy – everything you want the hero to be.  The supporting characters all had a purpose and the antagonists were dark and twisted – just as they should be in a story such as this.

Were there plot holes?  Of course – it’s sci-fi.  Were they easily overlooked by the reader?  For me, yes.  When reading sci-fi, you have to suspend your disbelief and just enjoy.  I certainly did.  This book ended with a major cliffhanger, making me even more anxious to get my hands on the next book.  If you’re a sci-fi fan, look into this series.

I received a digital ARC of this book from the publisher through NetGalley.
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