H2o Book Cover H2o
H2O, Book 1
Virginia Bergin
Juvenile Fiction
Sourcebooks Fire
October 7, 2014

When a strange rain falls bearing a fatal, contagious disease, Ruby finds herself alone with the only drinkable water quickly running out.



“H2O” is an apocalyptic thriller centering around the premise of deadly rain, and I found it quite enjoyable.  For maximum scare factor, be sure to read it during a rainstorm, as I accidentally did.

Ruby, the main character, is pretty much a mean girl everyone knew in high school.  Of course, she doesn’t actually realize that she is mean.  I’ve read some complaints about her character and, while I agree that she is not always pleasant, she is realistic.  She just turned fifteen and from her own story she was never overly mature for her age.  The rain didn’t suddenly make her smarter, more likable, or super brave.  I appreciate the author keeping it real in that way.  She does have some admirable qualities, and she also realizes some mistakes she has made along the way.  It’s definitely a love/hate situation with her.

Along with Ruby, there are many intriguing characters met along the way.  As it is a disaster situation, most of them are not in the story for long, but I believe that is the way things would be in such a situation.  Not every story will get a resolution.

I absolutely loved the premise of the killer rain.  The panic and breakdown in society from the fear of the environment and limited supply of water is a terrifying thought, and the author did an excellent job of writing that.  She also did a good job of invoking the pain and sadness of so much loss of life, which is the basis of my one complaint.  There is one chapter that is totally unnecessary and what I would call emotional blackmail.  I won’t spoil what happens, but while heartbreaking, it did not need to be present, as the author had already given multiple reasons for the reader’s heart to be broken that were actually cohesive with the plot.  Contriving situations to evoke an emotional response from the reader is one of my pet peeves, as it seems there is no trust put in the reader to pick up all of the emotions already present.  I would have dropped it an entire star had I not loved the rest of the book so much, but I still feel the need to point that out here.

In short, if you love a good natural disaster novel and don’t mind having your heart broken, “H2O” is a wonderful choice for upper middle graders and up.

This review is based upon a complimentary copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.


Content Situations:

Mild Sexual Situations, Violence, Gore, Underage Drug and alcohol Abuse

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