Ashfall, by Mike Mullin (2011)

Genre: Science Fiction
Interest level: 12-18
AshfallA supervolcano erupts at Yellowstone National Park, spewing fireballs and a seemingly incessant ashfall begins. Alex is home alone when the disaster strikes his home in Iowa, his parents and sister having gone to visit an uncle in Illinois. He escapes the fire that destroys the house, and is taken in by the neighbours. A home invasion that ends badly sends Alex on the run to find his family, using skis to navigate the ash that covers the landscape. Along the way, he meets Darla, who has to be the coolest survivalist east of Idaho. She can skin a rabbit, stitch a wound, build a corn grinder, repair a tractor and pull a soaked Alex out of a river with one arm. Man, that girl is strong. Alex, well, he knows tae kwon do, and that’s pretty handy in this nasty world Mullin has created. I like dystopic fiction, but this one is as depressing as I can take. Killing, raping, lying, hoarding, nasty governments who don’t care about their people. Though at least toilet water tastes good. It’s all in this lovely little tome. And it absolutely is a great choice for those of us who like this genre. An award or two is pending for this gem. Gotta go – time to learn tae kwon do, and pick up some water treatment tablets.
More discussion and reviews of this novel:


About Michelle Mallette
I'm just trying to keep track of the books I've read - what I liked and what isn't worth re-reading. My work as a librarian has included youth services so you'll find a wide range of interests from picture books and teen dystopia to adult sci-fi, road trip novels, and nonfiction. Comments and communication is always welcome.

2 Responses to Ashfall, by Mike Mullin (2011)

  1. Mike Mullin says:

    Thanks for spending some of your precious reading time with ASHFALL, Michelle. The sequel, ASHEN WINTER, will be out October 8th. It’s in copy-edits now.

    • Michelle Mallette says:

      Nice to hear from you – and I’m looking forward to more with Darla and Alex.

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