Review: The Ask and the Answer by Patrick Ness

Posted May 13, 2013 by Suzanne in Reviews / 4 Comments

Review: The Ask and the Answer by Patrick Ness
The Ask and the Answer
by Patrick Ness

4.5 Stars


Released: May 4, 2009
Series: Chaos Walking #2
Published by Walker
Pages: 536
Format: Paperback

…this series is dystopian YA at its finest, focusing on two young people struggling to survive in a brutal environment where there seems to be little hope and no easy solution as everything around them surrenders to violence… ~ Under the Covers

The wounded Viola has been captured by Mayor Prentiss and Todd will do anything to save her, even become part of Mayor Prentiss’s new order. But soon rebellion starts and the past seems like it is going to repeat itself and Violet and Todd find themselves torn apart to opposing sides, each taking they never thought themselves possible of.

It has been a while since I read The Knife of Never Letting Go so I was worried when I initially started this that I wouldn’t remember or would have lost my connection with the characters and the story. I am very pleased that I was so wrong! From page one I was dragged back in and the story took hold of me, I think part of the reason why was because it was told from first person and the start scene is particularly intense, especially as Todd is such a great character; I was helpless but to turn the pages to see what happened next.

The Ask and the Answer ratchets up the tension and the scope of the series dramatically from the first book. Although it is about the survival of Todd and Viola still, it is now also about their survival during a war and it isn’t just their physical bodies they have to worry about as they are both forced in to untenable situations where every choice leads to a soul scarring atrocity.

But this series is dystopian YA at its finest, focusing on two young people struggling to survive in a brutal environment where there seems to be little hope and no easy solution as everything around them surrenders to violence and they are stuck inbetween. The unique and interesting way it is written also makes this book stand out in my mind as it manages to display in the written word the difference in the two main characters thought patterns just by the structure of the writing when told from their POV, making everything more intense, it is very clever.

Although I may not have enjoyed this one quite as much as the first book, I still found it enthralling, full of adventure and gut wrenching emotion; love, hate, hope, helplessness, forgiveness and all the other emotional goodies that a fantastic book hands out. I look forward to reading the next and final installment of this trilogy.

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Gosh, we all seem to be admitting our ages…and I hate that I am at the point in life when admitting my age is a “thing”…whodda thunk it? I was kind of hoping I would remain 21 forever. However, I have moved out of that New Adult stage of my life and am now strictly in the Contemporary Romance age zone of 28. I would prefer to be in an Urban Fantasy arena, but I don’t think I own enough black leather. However, I could probably squeeze into some PNR, I am fully prepared to give a horn job to my favourite demon, or suck on my sexy vamps…fangs and I am definitely up for some heavy petting with some fine looking shifters. Than again their’s always Sci Fi…I am fully prepared to do the right thing and help some poor alien race with more 6 packs than a supermarket repopulate their planet. Not that I am loose woman or anything.

Annnnnd I will stop myself there, before I start waxing lyrical about my love of historical romance and fantasy as well; no one needs to know about my elf fantasies. As you can tell, I adore and day dream about most romance genres, and my three big loves are 1) reading about romance 2) writing about romance and 3) talking about romance with my gals. Which, is why I love Under the Covers so much, I get all my bookish needs satisfied and don’t get judged when I talk about my favourite characters like they are real people. Which they are right?
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I love this series! ~ Annie

Lori Meehan
Lori Meehan

Thanks Suz.


Thanks for the author and series intro Suz!


Very rare I read dystopian books,most depends from the synopsis,if synopsis sounds to me interesting,then definitely I would read that book.

I like how sounds these books,unique,promising,and after reading this review these books go on my TBR 🙂

Thanks for the awesome review Suz! 🙂