Silver by Chris Wooding

20782836The final exam is survival.

Paul is the new kid at Mortingham Boarding Academy, and he has a dark secret.
Caitlyn admires Paul from afar and resents that he only has eyes for Erika.
Erika thinks that she and Caitlyn are best friends, but she’s wrong.
Adam is a bully with a major chip on his shoulder.
Mark is outgrowing his old friends but doesn’t know how to make new ones.

In a few short hours, none of this will matter. Without warning, a horrifying infection will spread across the school grounds, and a group of students with little in common will find themselves barricaded in a classroom, fighting for their lives. Some will live. Some will die. And then it will get even worse.

Fast-paced and frightening, Silver is a tale set on the fringes of science and horror – a story about the struggle to survive in the face of impossible odds. – Goodreads.com

This YA apocalyptic/horror/sci-fi was definitely fast-paced and took place over less than 24 hours.  Just don’t get too attached to the characters.  As stated above, some will live and some will die.

The setting, a secluded boarding school, was perfect for this story.  Since there were more students than adults, some of the older kids were shoved into leadership roles whether they wanted them or not.  With the boarding school being so secluded, the characters were mostly cut off from any help beyond their school ground walls and had to rely on each other.

Initially, I was disappointed in the stereotypical cast of teenage characters – angst-ridden guy, princess, genius nerd, bully, jealous best friend – but I have to admit, the author went a step further and let the reader see inside the character’s minds to gain a better understanding of them and see how they developed by the end of the story.

The explanation for the origin of the infection seemed a little thin, but there were definitely some tense moments in the story and it held my attention.  Although I’m not sure if there is a planned sequel to this novel, the ending left it wide open to continue the story.

I would recommend this quick read for people who enjoy sci-fi/apocalyptic books with more emphasis on action.

This review is based on a digital ARC from the publisher through NetGalley.

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