The Always War by Margaret Peterson Haddix

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So I finally went back to reading books. YES, I rarely collect the actual books anymore, except for one or two authors whom I find worth it. NOT that I think less of the digital format since it’s convenient and all. Yet sometimes I find it quite annoying when I’m at chapter 25 and want to flip back to read some past details and have it right there at the same time as I struggle with some clues, etc.

Anyway, to get back to the book, it’s not really my favorite but I must admit, it’s quite intriguing and suspenseful–as most of her books are. This book goes into great length of describing the effects of war (obviously given the title) and contains the typical formula of needing heroes to step up and defend humanity against extinction by restoring peace all around. It sounds mushy to death with my lame description, but there’s a message within the book that extends beyond being a hero or heroine or about fame (i.e. the one who did it). The message that is being sent here is about the courage to accept the truth and also the perseverance to keep going regardless of obstacles. Not to mention how if we’re not careful, we could reach that point one day. An exaggeration or an attempt to spread fear (or otherwise silly)–one might think, but think about it. All these wars/battles/or other debates that are stirring around just for greed, power, or just plain wanting to be right will eventually destroy us one day. Like anyone’s going to stop because just given little examples of how people respond to certain “small” issues and we have enough to start a side battle, even with the little daily life stuff. So imagine the bigger issues that could not be resolved with just some mature discussion to reach a level where everyone could live with. It’s just about “all or nothing” in cases like this. No compromises.

Not recommended for those who don’t want to read a “too morbid” book. Might be a quick read for just a little heads-up or whatever. Sure, there’s hope at the end of that story and there’s hope and all. BUT the aftermath of war is just crazier. And the reality is, if anyone has been through a war, like literally have their hometown destroyed and having to seek shelter elsewhere that you would never feel like “home” again–and could never shake that “dependent” feeling off, that’s where the “aftermath” comes in. That’s the difference between the people in the story still being able to rebuild their homes versus having to evacuate or emigrate elsewhere.