After The Snow Character Analysis

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Fifteen-year-old Willo was born after the onset of a new ice age that has left Europe in winter’s grip in S. D. Crockett’s atmospheric first novel, “After the Snow,” a post-apocalyptic thriller for the post-global-warming era. A strong survivor, he lives with his family of “stragglers” in the hills outside the city. He wears a coat of hand-stitched skins and a dog skull as a fierce kind of hat, and when his family is taken away by the government, he goes out in search of them, following the voice of a dog inside his head. Traveling across a harsh, cold, snow-­covered terrain filled with wild packs of dogs, Willo heads into the city, a bleak realm of starvation and violence. Along the way, he falls for a girl and discovers his family secrets, as well as the deep truth of who he is and where he belongs. Willo tells this dark story in a heavy, coarse, broken, but often beautiful dialect: “People always looking to find the runt in you and needle it out if they can.” It’s hard not to wonder at first whether Willo is perhaps a little slow or unbalanced. If so,…show more content…
But readers who get bogged down with questions about computers and McDonald’s are going to miss out on a wonderful story — one that wobbles a little in the final third but comes to a beautiful ending. And Crockett’s avoidance of the contemporary world gives her a powerful advantage. “After the Snow” isn’t cautionary, as so many dystopian novels are, about a current hot-button issue. Crockett doesn’t tease out societal or political trends to spell our doom. Readers who dig for these will find a number of threads, but the novel untethers them again and again. Instead of being political, the story Crockett tells is a deeply human one of survival and self-discovery. “After the Snow” is a coming-of-age novel, first and foremost — a brutal, tough and sometimes truly transcendent

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