September 16, 2019 10:26 PM - by Chuck Wendig - Subscribe

Shana wakes up one morning to discover her little sister in the grip of a strange malady. She appears to be sleepwalking. She cannot talk and cannot be woken up. And she is heading with inexorable determination to a destination that only she knows. But Shana and are sister are not alone. Soon they are joined by a flock of sleepwalkers from across America, on the same mysterious journey. And like Shana, there are other “shepherds” who follow the flock to protect their friends and family on the long dark road ahead.

Chuck Wendig, author of the Miriam Black series, several Stars Wars books, and amazing reviews of heirloom apples pens a modern-day The Stand. He chronicles a group of people looking after sleepwalkers who cannot be woken up, their journey across America, and what awaits them at the end of their journey.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit (5 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I just finished this book and I thought it was great. Lots of twists that actually surprised me. As the ending approached I kept wondering how that little band of unarmed people could possibly defeat the coming militia, and then the solution was so elegant and obvious that I felt like I should've put it together.

The only major thing that gave me pause is why Ozark had to be a rapist? He and his minions were plenty terrible without throwing that in.
posted by something something at 1:47 PM on September 17, 2019

Yeah, I was definitely going to buy this book as a gift until I hit that scene.

Wendig has a gift for making mundane things terrifying. Invasive and ant crimes, for example. Now it's any bat coming from a cave...
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 9:35 PM on September 18, 2019

"The only major thing that gave me pause is why Ozark had to be a rapist?"

I've liked Wendig for his proclivity to go very, very dark and push boundaries while avoiding being a problematic edgelord, so I also was a little taken aback by it and think it was a mistake.

IMO, though, it's arguable that it has some value in the reality check it provides to those male readers who tend to take sexual violence against women for granted -- the perspective of the audience-identifying male victim will be pretty shocking to many men and might make them uncomfortable in a way that leads to some reflection. Or, maybe not, and it was a bad choice.

I half suspect that the scene exists because Wendig didn't want to give up Ozark's quip, which is nightmarish and haunting and blackly funny in a way that's very reminiscent of Stephen King at his best and also very on-brand for Wendig.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 6:21 AM on September 20, 2019

His Twitter apple reviews are my FAVORITE.
posted by bitter-girl.com at 7:44 AM on September 20, 2019 [2 favorites]

I just finished this. I picked it up because I like his Miriam Black stuff, but I really struggled halfway through and had to switch to Tom Holt to reset my mood. I'm fine with dark stuff, but the maga-ish stuff in the middle just felt so bleak.
posted by Marticus at 12:59 PM on December 5, 2019

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