4 out of 5 stars
People have always heard voices in their heads, but these voices in this dystopian future are deadly. They have forced people to kill themselves and the few people left that have either not heard the voices or have resisted them are all that are left in this hollowed-out society. Pilgrim is one of the few who has a voice within and has resisted the taunting and almost has a working relationship with it.
Lacey is a girl who misses her sister, and since her gran died, she has been very much alone. Somehow she has survived the anarchy that is all that is left of her society, She sets up a stall selling lemonade and the first person to stop for a drink is Pilgrim; he has been told to by his voice. Her price for the drink is not money, but rather a lift to the city where her sister lives.
He reluctantly agrees, and after she has shut the house up, they set off. A brief stop in a motel demonstrates the danger that they are into Lacey, but they do manage to acquire another companion, Alex. As they approach the city where Karey lives, they start to come across members of a lawless gang who are on the search for a person who managed to escape from them. She was another with a voice in her head and they are always on the lookout for other people with voices within. Pilgrim hasn’t mentioned anything to Lacey about his, so she doesn’t realise just how much danger they are in. The encounter with the gang splits the three up and they know that they have to get back together to survive this cruel world.
This is a very fast-paced dystopian science fiction book that grabs you and runs relentlessly towards the ending. It is a brutal future too, the violence in this world Todd has created does not stop and yet within it all, is this paternal relationship that is developing between Pilgrim and Lacey as they look out for each other. I had the odd thing that I wasn’t sure about, I still don’t understand what the Voices are and I don’t think we are supposed to know until much later on. It reminded me a little of Host by Stephanie Meyer, combined with large dollops of American Gods and Mad Max. Whilst the plot is self-contained in this book, there is enough, that is left open for the next in the series, Hunted.