Mid-Week Review: Wranglestone

Hey, hey, hey! Welcome back to the Big Kids Book Club.

It’s Thursday, so it’s time to jump right into another Mid-Week Review!

Today’s book: Wranglestone by Darren Charlton

Publisher: Little Tiger Press

Pages: 384

Release Date:  06/02/2020

Suggested Age Range: 13+ YA

Genre(s): Science Fiction, Horror, Post-Apocalypse, LGBTQ+

Star Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐ (out of 5)


Shortlisted for the YA Book Prize 2021

Shortlisted for the Costa Children’s Book Award 2020

Winter was the only season every Lake-Lander feared…

In a post-apocalyptic America, a community survives in a national park, surrounded by water that keeps the Dead at bay. But when winter comes, there’s nothing to stop them from crossing the ice.

Then homebody Peter puts the camp in danger by naively allowing a stranger to come ashore and he’s forced to leave the community of Wranglestone. Now he must help rancher Cooper, the boy he’s always watched from afar, herd the Dead from their shores before the lake freezes over. But as love blossoms, a dark discovery reveals the sanctuary’s secret past. One that forces the pair to question everything they’ve ever known.


Peter’s trying his best in a world that’s harsh and resentful, full of mistrust and aggression. In the lakes of Wranglestone, the small community of survives only get by thanks to taking the extreme measures required. But Peter forgets these when a stranger arrives on a canoe with their dying wife… and finds a knife in his gut for his troubles.

This spirals into a look at the human condition, and what it truly means to live when the world is dead and dying. They call the resurrected dead monsters, but who truly is the monster in this world?

And if that wasn’t bad enough, not only is Peter’s having trouble enough with the community of survivors, but he’s also having trouble coming to terms with who he is and his emotions for the handsome and rugged Cooper. The boy is the perfect outdoorsman to Peter’s naïve indoory being. Can two such polar opposite people really attract?

But not all is as it seems, as the infected within the community are left out for the masked ones to come and collect them. Nobody knows where they are taken, but when Cooper becomes infected too, Peter’s not about to let him simply be given away as nothing more than dead meat. T

The boys discover that love can conquer many barriers – death being just one of them. And when their homes are in danger, they’ll work as one to show everybody the true monsters working behind the scenes.

Perfect for fans of: Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion

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