*I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review*
Sanctuary is a fast-paced urban sci-fi suspense. While the protagonist's age it somewhere between YA and New Adult, I also feel it's suitable for middle school as well. In fact, I think the Middle Grade audience will really appreciate the non-stop action. Sanctuary is a clean read; I can't recall any use of offensive language, and the attacks, though bloodthirsty, are almost more interesting than violent.
Jennie is about to enter her sophomore year of college. It's been a year since the aliens first appeared, attacking the sun and poisoning the water supply. When the new attacks surface, Jennie is separated from her parents, leaving her to care for her five year old brother, Mickey. Jennie is a wonderful girl. She's sweet and loyal; her patience is never-ending. Not only that, but she's strong, in body, spirit, and mind. She's a great role model for anyone.
Hugh Harris is a high school biology teacher that hides in his apartment after the attacks, watching everything play out on TV. He begins to develop his own theories about the alien attacks. When he decides he can't sit around doing nothing anymore, he runs into Jennie and her brother fleeing from the monsters. Hugh may be the only person who comprehends just what is happening from a biological standpoint. I really liked Hugh. Unlike his cad brother, Brad, Hugh is a gentleman and a scholar.
This story is told from multiple perspectives. At times I think it switches around a bit too much. It becomes rather distracting after a while. I don't think we needed Brad's perspective at all. He didn't bring much but a bad attitude to the party. This story is more about the people involved and less about the actual events. While I like reading about the characters, I wanted to know more about the aliens and the science behind the attacks. It's all hinted at but never delved into. I did enjoy how quickly things move forward; there was never a dull moment. The ending is not so much an ending as a potential new beginning, so I'm assuming there may be another book in the works. Faith plays a large role in the overall plot, so if that's not your thing, you may be disappointed.
Sanctuary is a good choice for everyone middle school and up that enjoys a fast paced adventure. Please keep in mind, the story contains monster attacks, blood/gore, and mass death. Some younger readers might find this book too scary. I plan to pass this recommendation on to my middle school-age son and his friends...they're all addicted to anything zombie right now :)