The main character eighteen-year-old Eve finds herself in a very perilous place sixteen years after a deadly virus has wiped out most of Earth's population. Eve has never been beyond the heavily guarded perimeter of her all-girls school. The night before her graduation she learns the shocking truth about her school's real purpose and the horrifying fate that awaits her. As she flees the only home she has ever known, she finds herself on a long treacherous journey where food and water is scarce and danger lies in wait around every corner. Separated from men her whole life, Eve has been taught to fear them, so when a rough, rebellious boy by the name of Caleb rescues her, she doesn't know how to react to him.
Anna Carey builds a dark and scary, uber-dangerous world where the need for women to repopulate the world is taken to new heights. The intensity will keep you turning the pages late into the night. Carey also writes wonderful believable characters with lots of depth. I especially loved to see how Eve's naive, innocent, yet driven character grows as she learns the truth about the world around her. Caleb too is a captivating character because you can see how he has had to become a hard, tough fighter to stay alive in such devastating circumstances and yet you see his softer side as he builds a relationship with Eve.
I found the unique story-line intriguing and found myself not wanting to put the book down. At times it is downright gruesome and extremely eery for example when Eve discovers what really happens at the school across the bridge. Yet just as suddenly it grabs your heart with a touching moment - like when Eve is helping to teach young Benny and Silas to read.
I can't wait to read "Once" the next book in this captivating trilogy.