It started out promising enough but Winter's End ultimately did not deliver.
Winter's End is about an oppressive government called the Phalangists. The boarding schools the four leads are in are very strict and cruel. This was where the book could have gotten away with not explaining enough how the Phalangists operated. The school discourages talking and the students are formed in solidarity not to turn on each other. No one in the community interacted with them and news of the real world was kept from them. They had three outside appointments a year to see a consolor. Helen is depressed and has an attachment to hers so she takes Milena along with her.
Milena meets a cute boy named Bart and they run away together.
The school has a system that if a student doesn't return then another child takes their place "in the sky". The sky is a dark dungeon.
This system works because the students have a system that no one turns on the other.
I expected more consequences to result from Milena and Bart taking off as two other students were locked in dark dungeons in their place.
Bart felt some guilt but Milena had a birth right of being fawned over and had beautiful blond hair. She was underwritten to the say the least. Her mom was a singer for the resistance movement so naturally once people heard her
sing then everyone would rebel against the government.
Why on earth do people today pick presidential candidates on actors ["Oooh Tyra Banks likes this guy so I will too."] and why was her mom that influential? That still didn't make sense people would rebel because she sang. The few glimpses of the town seemed like DDR Germany. The secret police hid behind newspapers and everyone told on each other.
You would think Milena abandonment that resulted in Catharina being imprisoned might have set off a chain reaction. Why didn't these kids work the systems too? There parents were all resistance movement people but surely Totalitarianism isn't inherited?
We didn't get enough of the outside world to explain the rebellion. This wasn't The Hunger Games
. I often found myself at times wishing it was.
There were many ways it could have gone on to be interesting but then didn't happen. I kept waiting for Helen to do something other than pine for Milos or follow Milena around. They left her behind twice.
Milena and Bart live happily ever after cause their parents were comely and talented.
Helen never learned her precious Paula, a counselor called consoler wasn't that great. She earned her living off comforting the abused children but admitted to liking
the system because she had a place in it.
I skipped the Milos scenes where he battled in the arena. His story wasn't very compelling.
I wish we'd have learned more about the other kids who escaped the school after they did it.
The bottom line is the resistance was weak like the fake French resistance so popular in films and a.. err.. *quiet voice* Sweet Valley Twin book I read as a kid.