Book Review: Edge of Collapse by Kyla Stone

Title: Edge of Collapse

Author: Kyla Stone

Series: Edge of Collapse #1

Page Count: 316

Publish Date: January 31, 2020

Publisher: Paper Moon Press

Buy Edge of Collapse at Amazon.

Synopsis:

In the dead of winter, an EMP attack destroys the U.S. power grid.

No electricity. No cars or phones. The country is plunged into instant chaos.

But for Hannah Sheridan, it’s the best day of her life. For the last five years, she’s been the captive of a sadistic psychopath–until the EMP releases the lock of her prison.

Battered but not broken, she emerges from her underground cell into a hostile winter wilderness with nothing but the clothes on her back and her determination to survive.

Reclusive Special Forces soldier Liam Coleman is headed nowhere fast. He believed he was prepared for any disaster. Then everything he cared about was taken from him in a matter of seconds.

Two hundred frozen, perilous miles stand between Hannah and Liam and their destination in rural Michigan.

But the killing cold isn’t the only threat, for Hannah’s captor isn’t about to let her go…

When the country goes dark, ordinary people find themselves facing the end of the world as they know it. With society collapsing before their eyes, they’ll have to risk everything to protect their home and the people they love.

Edge of Collapse

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My Review:

The book starts with a simple sentence but one that caught my attention. After all, it seems like a relatively insignificant event, yet the overarching consequences of it are huge as we continue to read on.

The cast of characters is relatively small, as it focuses heavily on Hannah, Pike, and Liam. There are times when they encounter groups of people, but these moments are small and those others tend not to get much page time, nor are many of them named.

This helps to keep the reader engaged in what these three are doing and you know a side character has some importance when they spend more than a page or two together.

The chapters bounce between Hannah, Liam, and Pike’s perspectives, and with each chapter, we learn a bit more about the respective characters and also see their struggles and triumphs as they navigate this vastly changed and dangerous world. Most of the chapters do focus on Hannah, but it makes sense given what she has been through and what she is currently enduring.

Hannah is a broken character but she’s not ready to quit or give up. Her last few years have been absolute torture and it has left her physically and mentally crippled, with fear being a major hurdle for her.

Yet despite her horrible experiences, she has a new lease on life when the power goes out because it’s her one and only chance to escape. The going is not easy, but her survival instincts have kicked in and the further away she gets from her prison, the more she remembers from her basic survival knowledge.

This knowledge will be key to not only escaping but enduring the harsh Michigan winter.

Once Pike, her captor, is officially introduced, things take an interesting turn. He realized quite quickly this was no ordinary power outage and immediately knew he must go and ensure his prisoner was still contained.

Pike has two sides to him. The well-respected security guard at a correctional facility and the one where he captures or tortures women for his entertainment. We get to see both of these throughout the story, but most of the time it is the latter.

The final piece to the puzzle is Liam. His past isn’t quite revealed to us, but it’s clear that something tragic happened when the EMP hit and he is fighting his own demons while trying to get to safety.

He is a good addition to the story and is a crucial part of Hannah’s continued escape from Pike. Liam is very skilled and makes up for a lot of Hannah’s shortcomings.

Yet even he has moments where he makes mistakes, misjudges people around them, or gets too sidetracked by something and puts Hannah in danger. This makes him feel real because if he never made a mistake he would be annoying.

The events of this book take course over about a week but quite a bit happens in that time. The author does a good job of showing how quickly society will crumble and turn into chaos in an event like this. The violent gangs that erupt when police are no longer able to respond to emergencies.

These groups certainly hamper Hannah and Liam’s progress as they try to reach their destination while fleeing from Pike.

These three inevitably meet and immediately Hannah goes from a woman regaining her confidence to a completely broken person and rightfully so. She’s been through so much by Pike’s hands and even the strongest person would fall back into that fear and submission to their capture in this situation.

It’s clear that without Liam there, she would end up back with Pike and that would essentially be the end of it.

Throughout the story, the stakes are raised again and again and that thriller aspect of it never goes away. It made me keep eagerly reading to see what would be around the turn for them.

It’s clear that their journey has only begun and there will be many more hurdles for them to deal with in order for Hannah to make it back to her husband and son, and for Liam to get to his destination. I’m also interested to see exactly what happens with Pike in the end.

I will admit, that occasionally things feel repetitive, especially the way we are constantly reminded of Hannah’s fear. I understand she’s been through a lot in the last few years but it’s nearly constant that we are told about it.

The ending, especially that last page or two, fell flat. Suspension had been building on nearly every page up to that point and then it just dropped completely into that lackluster final scene.

Overall, Edge of Collapse is quite a story. It has good pacing throughout, plenty of action, heavy thriller vibes, and characters that will stop at nothing to get what they want – be it good or bad. I have now added the rest of this series to my TBR and I look forward to seeing what comes next.

I hope you enjoyed my review of Edge of Collapse. Have you read this book?

Buy Edge of Collapse at Amazon.

8 Comments

  1. will look for this on my kindle. am a fan of dystopian survival stories

    1. Author

      I hope you enjoy it.

  2. This is such a great review, thank you for sharing. I have been searching for a book that would grab my attention and that I could get lost in – this seems like the perfect pick.

    1. Author

      Thank you. I hope you enjoy this one if you do pick it up. I can’t wait to read the rest of the series.

  3. This sounds INTENSE! I am recovering from surgery and getting through books fast. Will check this one out!

    1. Author

      It was absolutely intense. I hope you enjoy it if you do pick it up and that your recovery goes well.

  4. Sounds like a gripping story. Will not be surprised if it made into a series on an OTT platform soon. It has all the makings of one!

    1. Author

      It really was gripping and I cannot wait to continue the series.

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