My rating: (3 / 5)
This collection of short stories centered around the Autumn universe, created by David Moody, is sometimes billed as “Autumn 3.5” so I decided that’s exactly where I’d read it as I plowed through the series, between three and four. Now I’m wondering if I shouldn’t have waited until the series was finished.
This was less of a quick read than the other books in the series, partly because I found so many of the stories to be profoundly sad, and because a consistent action oriented plot wasn’t at play. I did enjoy getting to see the backstories of some of the characters brought into the story in books 2 and 3. Many of these tales deal with minor characters, and one or two stories deal with characters not seen in the previous books at all. Those tend to be the saddest, mainly because through poor choices or misfortune they didn’t make it far enough in this changed world to make it to any of the larger groups of survivors.
You get to find out details of what happened at the community center from book 1, which was of particular interest to me, and at the military bunker once the survivors left. You also, toward the end, get a hint of what’s going to happen on the island with Michael and Emma, and that’s where I wish I’d waited. If you want to get on with the rest of the stories in this book mid-series, stop before the last one unless you want an abbreviated version of the Michael and Emma future. I’m kind of worried that I’ve ruined the rest of the series for myself, and definitely would have preferred to to be let in on one particular plot point that’s spoiled by that last story – read at your own risk!