Thursday, 25 September 2014

Not a Drop to Drink by Mindy McGinnis: Review

Not a Drop to Drink (Not a Drop to Drink, #1)

Regret was for people with nothing to defend, people who had no water. 
Lynn knows every threat to her pond: drought, a snowless winter, coyotes, and, most importantly, people looking for a drink. She makes sure anyone who comes near the pond leaves thirsty, or doesn't leave at all.
Confident in her own abilities, Lynn has no use for the world beyond the nearby fields and forest. Having a life means dedicating it to survival, and the constant work of gathering wood and water. Having a pond requires the fortitude to protect it, something Mother taught her well during their quiet hours on the rooftop, rifles in hand.
But wisps of smoke on the horizon mean one thing: strangers. The mysterious footprints by the pond, nighttime threats, and gunshots make it all too clear Lynn has exactly what they want, and they won’t stop until they get it….
With evocative, spare language and incredible drama, danger, and romance, debut author Mindy McGinnis depicts one girl’s journey in a barren world not so different than our own. (Goodreads summary.)

I waited 9 months to read this! WHY?
You know when you own a book for months but then put off reading it, only to finally get to it and wish you'd read it months ago. Not a Drop to Drink is one of those books. I am kicking myself right now for taking so long to get to it. It's was an incredible story, so much more than I expected and I definitely didn't expect it to break my heart. But it did, it really did,

I know I have only read one of her books but, I'm pretty certain I will be reading anything Mindy McGinnis writes from now on. Her writing is superb, I can't even find the words to describe it to you. It feels like not one word is wasted in this novel. She had me captivated by page one and didn't let me go until I got to the end of the book. Then I kind of wanted to launch it across my room in a fit of anger, love, sadness and happiness just all rolled into one. My emotions clearly weren't ready for this book.


Lynn was a character that I came to love and respect so much. She has so much character development during this book, I loved watching her go through this personal journey and grow as a person. She has spent her whole life with just her Mother, their whole lives dedicated to surviving and protecting the pond that is the key to their survival. In a world where sources of water are rare and highly sought after, Mother has always taught Lynn that she must protect the pond or she will die. Lynn has been killing people to protect the pond since she was nine years old, the closest she has come to talking to another person is when a neighbour, Stebbs, came one day to get help from her mother back when she was six years old. She has spent her whole life dedicated to surviving, to distrusting anyone but her mother and seeing everyone else as a threat.

The story really begins for me when Lynn has to start letting other people in. When she has to accept that not everybody is out to kill her. This comes in the form of Stebbs, the elderly neighbour and three people who have come from Entargo, one of the larger cities that has access to water. Eli is a sixteen year old boy, who's struggling to keep his niece, Lucy, alive and his brother's pregnant wife Neva. Stebbs is the character who wants so badly to show Lynn that it's not always a bad thing to help others, that it's not a waste of resources but the right thing to do. It was just really beautiful being able to watch her finally let others into her life and help her in ways she didn't even realise she needed.

Mindy McGinnis seems to be the master of characters and character development. I loved seeing how the characters changed and grew in this, how each one had their own journey. Lynn goes on the biggest journey during this book. She had spent her life just with her Mother, a woman who had a big hate for men and the threats they posed. But Mother has never explained that to Lynn, Lynn is clueless in every way about men, love and everything other than purifying water, hunting and protecting what they had. Stebbs kind of bursts into her life, unwilling to let her continue to keep everyone away. He's like the father figure she never had and I just loved him. I just loved everyone in this book. Lucy is a character that is just everything that Lynn needs. She's only five and she has that happy innocence and obliviousness that all children have.

Eli and Lynn together was probably one of the cutest things I have ever seen. Seriously, it's just utterly adorable. Lynn is completely clueless when it comes to guys, she doesn't even understand the concept of kissing. Watching Eli try to flirt with her was one of the funniest moments in this book, whilst also one of the cutest. Eli brings out a much softer side to Lynn, one that I was so happy to finally get to see. Their romance is very slow building, and those have always been my favourite kind of romance. I just could not get enough of those two together. Knowing there was a sequel, I was really excited to see their romance develop over this book and it's sequel.

This is basically me at the end of this book.
When I started this book I honestly wasn't prepared for or expecting it to make me feel so much. My feelings were basically all over the place by the end of this book. I'd felt intense sadness, heartbreak and shock one minute, but then hope and happiness the next. The end was probably what brought this book down a whole star for me, I just couldn't handle it. I don't need all sunshine, rainbows and kittens, but I need my ending to make sense and if it hurts me, then I need to feel there's a sense to it. I didn't feel that in this. I just felt utterly heartbroken, and like I couldn't even bear to pick up the next book. I just still don't understand why it had to happen that way! I  JUST DON'T! Okay, and breathe. Maybe it's a realistic turn of events and, yes, the book does end on a hopeful note. But, I'm sorry, I just could not get past it. I can't get past it. I won't get past it. I might even pretend it never happened.


4.5/5 Butteflies

This is just a beautiful, amazing, incredible book! I applaud McGinnis for creating something so utterly wonderful. This hit me in my feels so hard, I'm still reeling from that ending. I loved the characters, from Lynn who probably goes through one of the biggest character developments I have ever seen, to Stebbs who reminds me a little of Haymitch for some reason, to Eli and Lucy who bring out the softer side in Lynn. I was going to give this a four, mainly because that ending broke my heart so much and almost ruined this book for me. But I can't deny the fact that this was a superbly written story, that hooked me from the first page, gave me all the feels and had me adding it to my favourites bookshelf. I don't know if my heart can handle the sequel though, I am not even sure I am strong enough. I want to recommend this book to absolutely everyone, but then I don't want to force you all to feel the pain I am feeling right now. Read at your own risk. 


24 comments:

  1. Yay! I am so happy you loved this. In my opinion this is one series that hugely underrated. I wish more people would try it because the writing really is fantastic.

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    1. It really is! I kind of want to force this book onto everyone.

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  2. What a bizarrely unique idea! I am actually intrigued to find out more (admittedly it's entering the TBR quite a long way down but it's on it nonetheless.) For that reason I kind of skimmed through your review and let the gifs give me pointers XD Thanks for sharing!

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    1. I hope you do get around to reading it at some point, It's so good!

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  3. OOOh nice review! I just read another good review on this! I had started to debate over this one recently. Not sure why, but yeah, it was catching my eye. Because why not! I have 100s of other books to read, what's one more to the pile?!

    Your review really has me hooked! It sounds incredible! A great dystopian-ish read! And even though I am feeling somewhat prepared for the ending and trying to think, oh dear god, what happened?! I don't know if I will be! Great review! May just have to add this to the TBR mountain!

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    1. I hope you add it to your TBR mountain, it was an incredible read. I was surprised by just how much I ended up loving this book. I finished it and knew immediately that I needed to read the sequel.

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  4. Oh man. I love it when an author catches me right from the start like that and just makes it impossible to stop reading. That cover really drew me in and it just sounds fantastic! Thanks for the intro to her :)

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    1. She's a really talented author, she's put herself on my auto-buy list and I am excited to read whatever comes next for her.

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  5. You're back! :D Are you back? I'm glad you enjoyed this, so did Stacie, and many others, but I really am not sure to be honest, it's something I'm wary of, not because I think it'll not be good, but because I don't think it'll be very, well me. You can sense these things, but breaking your heart, that's good, Belzhar did that to me too! :)

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    1. It's one of those books that is definitely not for everyone. I absolutely loved it but can completely understand why others wouldn't. It didn't feel too good :( haha.

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  6. I am convinced! I really need to get my hands on it soon! It really sounds amazing! Thanks for the review! Looking forward to more by you :)
    Book Maniac Reviews

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    1. Thank you. I hope you get to read it soon, it's a really incredible read.

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  7. Great review! Awesome gifs as always :)
    I've had this for ages too and not read it but I'm planning to soon hopefully.

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  8. I liked this book so much that I had to pick up a whole different genre after it because I just couldn't bare to read anything like it. I was literally sitting on my sofa, pouty face (according to my OH) just starting at my bookcase for like half an hour. I'm pretty sure that if I didn't pick something up, and quick, I would fall into a slump because that book was just too much.

    Currently trying to write my review, but in all honesty I have no idea how to without completely losing it over the ending. I think yes, it was more realistic but god damn, some warning would have been nice :(

    Great review though Charnell, can't wait to hear what you think of the second one.

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    1. That book was AMAZING! I was so happy I could get straight to the sequel, but I didn't enjoy that as much. It was good, but it just wasn't as good as I thought it was going to be. I know, I always struggle writing reviews for the books I love.

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  9. I am guilty of having this book for a while and not reading it yet. I'm going to move it up my list ASAP. I keep skipping it for some reason, even though I was so excited when I purchased it. Can't wait to read it now.
    And fearing the ending now. LOL

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    1. Haha! YOU SHOULD! I hope you get to it soon, it's a really wonderful book and I absolutely loved it.

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  10. I had this book from the library and started it but I couldn't get into it for some reason. Then it was due back, I couldn't renew it, and so I never read past the first 50 pages. Reading your review makes me want to give it another try. ~Pam

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    1. I highly recommend it, but then again I would! I just thought it was beautiful and I loved seeing how much Lynn changes over the course of this book. It really begins to become something special when she's pushed out of her comfort zone and has to start letting others in. My heart </3

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  11. This is my exact problem! I've literally had this book since a month after it was released. I have full intentions of reading it but just haven't. Who knows why. But now after reading this I feel like I'm being stupid and need to just actually pick up the dern thing! Thank you for writing a stellar review that makes me realize the error in my ways. I will fix this!

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    1. I hope you do soon! It was an amazing read and I am kicking myself because I waited so long to get to it.

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  12. I SERIOUSLY LOVE THIS BOOK. I was not expecting it to really hit me in the feels either...I just wnated to read it because it was on this list of what-to-read-if-you-love-the-Hunger-Games (which those lists are usually absolute rubbish, and I LOVE NaDtD but it's still nothing like the hunger Games! COME ON. *ahem*) XD I'm so so excited that Mindy McGinnis wrote like a sequel/companion. Eeeeeh. ^-^ I would read anything from her. This was totally a favourite for last year.

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    1. I know, my feels weren't prepared for this book at all! Oh no, NOTHING like the Hunger Games. They are so different, not sure why people would even try to compare them. I enjoyed the companion novel, just not as much.

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