Vivian Apple at the End of the World
Narrated by Julia Whelan
Dreamscape Media LLC, 2015
Genre: Post-Apocalypse, YA, Science Fiction
Source: Audiofile, SYNC free downloads
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
In the alternative world of Vivian Apple, the Church of America has led much of the world to believe that "The Rapture" will be coming. Vivian does not believe, despite the other predictions that have come true: floods, extreme weather conditions, mass shootings. After spending Rapture's Eve at a party with her best friend Harp, Vivian returns home to find two holes in her believer-parents' bedroom--and no trace of either of them. Even with all the signs that the rapture has happened and everyone else (even some believers) have been left behind, Vivian and Harp don't buy it. With Harp and the help of mysterious Peter, she sets off on a cross-country trip to find out the truth.
This is a crazy scary world where Believers have pretty much taken over all of America. Top government officials are believers, people have pulled their kids out of public school because they won't teach Church of America doctrine, young girls are getting married, people buy Church of America food, and anyone who is not "traditional" is considered evil. It only gets worse after the Rapture and those who have been left behind are trying desperately to prove they are worthy of being raptured in the second round. The truth behind this world, the fact that it could so easily be the one we live in right now, is what makes it scary.
Vivian is a great character who begins the book timidly, not believing anything about the rapture and seriously baffled as to why her parents do believe. She does what she's told and follows rules. She studies hard because she knows that as soon as the rapture passes and it doesn't actually happen, she's going to be able to apply to colleges and get an education. Except then it does happen--or seems to happen--and where did following the rules and being a good girl get her?
I didn't expect to like this book so much, but it was so good and I had to find out what was going on and what Vivian finds in her search for the truth. If you like books about the end of the world, Vivian Apple is a great choice. The performance of the audiobook was also perfect, with Julia Whelan portraying Vivian Apple perfectly. I highly recommend this book and there is a second one that you can read: Vivian Apple Needs a Miracle.