The Rain

Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books

One minute, Ruby is having an incredible time (and her first proper snog) at her friend's house party. The next moment, she's being bundled inside by her friend's parents. It has started to rain - but this is no ordinary summer storm. There's something terrible in the rain - the water will infect you if you drink it or let it touch your skin. Even a single drop is enough to infect your blood and eat you from the inside out.

Now, just two weeks later, everything is different. Ruby's old neighbourhood has transformed into a landscape of horror and desolation;  her mother, stepfather and baby brother are gone; and all that's left for her is to get to London to try and find her father. And so Ruby sets out on a desperate and dangerous journey…

Told in Ruby's chatty, irreverent voice, The Rain sets aside the usual conventions of YA dystopia, and instead reads as though one of Louise Rennison's  teen heroines has stumbled into a post-apocalyptic narrative. The result is an original, offbeat and very entertaining novel, full of humour as well as fear and suspense, which instead of offering us the usual noble and wise young heroine, places a sometimes irritating, sometimes loveable, but always believable teen at its centre.  A funny, smart and wonderfully British take on dystopia that will leave readers eager for the next installment of Ruby's story.

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