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Ashfall Books In Order

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Publication Order of Ashfall Books

Ashfall (2011)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Ashen Winter (2012)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Darla's Story (2013)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Sunrise (2014)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Ashfall Series
The Ashfall is a series authored by Mike Mullin (February 1968—), a Denver-born novelist who schooled at the Brebeuf Preparatory. Mike is a graduate of Purdue University, where he not only studied political science and minored in both economics and Latino studies, but also pursued his MBA degree. Mike was once a bookshop, restaurant, and bar attendant, and has also worked as a fumigator and reference assistant.

He was a sixth grader when he released his earliest work, a picture book. Richard Peck, Mark Twain, and Harper Lee are the literary influences of Mullin—an Indianapolis-based martial arts practitioner—who acknowledges books written by Bill Bryson and Rebecca Solnit for inspiring his Ashfall series that revolves around the after-effects of a gigantic volcanic eruption. Mike’s niches are predominantly fantasy and young adult.

Books in the Ashfall Series
First dated October 5, 2013, Darla’s Story is book 0.5 in the Ashfall series. The female protagonist is the Iowa native Darla Jane Edmunds, aged seventeen, who has been fatherless—her father’s death occurred during a routine maintenance of a cattle guard—for three years and has a religion-obsessed little-concerned mother Gloria. Thus, Darla solely oversees her family-owned businesses, including their farm.

Shortly thereafter, huge earthquakes precede the dreaded Yellowstone Caldera’s gigantic ashen explosion that the mother and daughter had initially shrugged off as a haymaker on fire. Darla’s agitated bunnies had sensed the impending super-volcanic eruption that not only destroys infrastructure—including telecommunication and electricity—but also prompts falling ash and sunless days. Cut off from—and unaware of the fate of—the rest of the humanity, the tragedy prompts the two survivalists to improvise.

Darla resorts to her technical know-how in handling and repairing farm machines—including a tractor—and reflects on lessons under her history teacher Mr. Wembender. Thus, they improvise their lighting and water well; they then move on, meet, and form a mutualistic interaction with other survivalists, including boy Alex Halprin and Omaha-bound elderly woman Ruth who are searching for their relatives.

First dated October 11, 2011; Ashfall is the first book in Mike’s Ashfall series. The protagonist is the video games-loving urban teenager Alex who chances on Darla’s family farm—and bonds with her and her mother who treat him—while tracing, by skiing, his parents who had since left Iowa.

Incidentally, Alex is aged fifteen, from Cedar Falls, and obsessed with World of Warcraft; he had been caught up—alongside neighbors Joe and Darren who eventually flee, leaving the then lonesome Alex behind—and hurt during the volcanic eruption when he was left behind after a heated argument in the run-up to refusing to accompany his parents together with his kid sister Rebecca who were going to visit his uncle Paul in rural Warren village, near an Illinois state park.

First dated October 9, 2012; Ashen Winter is the second book in the Ashfall series. Set half a year later; teenagers Alex Halprin alongside Darla have since moved in with the boy’s Illinois-based family members as they wait to reunite with his parents whom they want to search and rescue from the relatively dangerous Iowa.

However, the parents’ search-and-rescue mission proves a survival for the fittest in the wintry environment because the other hostile survivalists—comprising of former inmates and motorized militia—that they find along the way are fighting for scant resources, including resorting to cannibalism.
For example; their hunters are pursuing them in a military truck while the duo successfully escape using a bike-like contraption. Fortunately, martial artist Alex’s resourcefulness and fitness gives them a competitive edge, especially when rescuing Darla whom cannibals had captured and dealing with the regional mayor Bob Petty who is killing refugees.

Originally released on March 17, 2014; Sunrise is book three in his Ashfall series. It is set nearly one year later, where the eruption-triggered societal collapse is at its peak, including a civil war and cannibals hunting in the rural areas.
Survivalists-turned-lovers Alex and Darla’s initiative concerns re-establishing civilization and creating wind turbine-powered greenhouses to farm kales and wheat during the icy and snowy environment. Alex’s father has since been killed. Sadly, Darla’s mother also dies when Paul’s farm is razed down later on.
However, Alex’s relatives—including his mother, uncle, aunt Caroline, and cousins Anna and Max—regroup in Paul’s farm where they join other survivalists in stocking stolen frozen pork, scouting for safer areas, scavenging for medicine to be administered by survivalist Dr. McCarthy, and fighting back against the murderous Mayor Bob whom Alex also wants to unseat.

Literary Awards
Mike’s October 2011 book Ashfall has won—or been nominated for—different literary awards. For instance; in September 2012, Ashfall was among the finalists in the “Hal Clement Award for Young Adult” category of the Golden Duck Awards.

In 2012, Ashfall won in the “High School” category of the Delaware Diamonds Award. In 2014, Ashfall was nominated for the “Young Adult” category of the Pennsylvania Young Reader’s Choice Award. Ashfall was also: a 2013 finalist in the Gateway Readers Award; nominated for the Georgia Peach Award in 2013, and, in 2014, nominated for the Charlotte Award and Iowa High School Book Award.

Books You May Like
Originally dated June 5, 2012; Emmy Laybourne’s book Monument 14 is her first one in a similarly-titled series. The book is about fourteen students—among teenage protagonist Dean—who are cut off from others and trapped in a superstore, where they turn into survivalists after a societal collapse-triggering hailstorm engulfs their school bus.

First dated May 4, 2011; Jeyn Roberts’ novel Dark Inside is book one in her Dark Inside series. Plot: a global mega-earthquake induces evil tendencies in people—including the four teenage protagonists who are reeling from their uncontrollable behaviors—ranging from a homicidal rage that turns them into serial killers to a suicidal rage that prompts self-cannibalism.

Initially dated January 1, 2012; Lex Thomas’ The Loners is book one in their Quarantine series. Protagonist David Thorpe is a reclusive student at McKinley High School; where a contagion-triggering explosion has killed all grown-ups—particularly their teachers—but spared all students, prompting a new and brutal affiliation-based social order that is against the recluse.

Book Series In Order » Characters » Ashfall

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