The Ask and the Answer: A Discussion

This trilogy is quickly becoming one of my favorites of all time. It’s asking all the questions of humanity that good apocalypse/dystopian books do. I believe that this book and Scythe could be studied for what they make the reader think about.

Unlike my first post about this trilogy, this will be more of a discussion so there will be SPOILERS. You can see my review of the first book (spoiler free) here.


This poor boy is constantly facing so much to the point that he is constantly overwhelmed and seeking ways to cope. A lot of this book is heartbreaking when it comes to Todd, what he’s forced to do, and what he comes to believe about himself, the Mayor, and Viola. I think his growth was really important and we can really see Todd coming into himself and his own power.

Viola is a huge driving force for him which I found sweet but also worried me that she’s his only reason for not falling into an abyss of depression or nothingness. I do think that Todd wants to be good and in this book Ness showed us that even good people do terrible things to survive and that adaptation is not always pretty or good.

Todd and Davy’s relationship eventually grew on me as we see that Davy is doing everything he can to appease his horrible father and that he is a product of a terrible system. I think that’s a huge point made in this book is that people are molded into the system they are forced or born into. It doesn’t mean it’s good but we gain a better understanding for the reasons behind their actions.


I loved getting to read from Viola’s perspective as well. I’m glad we didn’t have her perspective in the first book because we needed her to become humanized through Todd’s perspective and to understand her through his eyes and her noiselessness before we got to be inside her head.

Viola is so strong and a great companion to Todd. They really do compliment each other well. They also push each other which I think was great. Viola often frustrated me, but I also loved her because she never stopped fighting which is pretty much the opposite of what happens to Todd.

Ask and Answer

This book is really clever with its names and uses of words. I found both sides problematic, but I also think that Ness did a good job of showing us these two different philosophies about how society should function. Neither is right, and that was really important to see in the book. It reminded me a lot of Walking Dead in how I felt that the philosophies and morality of these leaders was never quite up to snuff.

How this book ended made me really nervous and I honestly am dreading the final book both because it will be over and also because there are going to be some really hard decisions for everyone to make. I’m hoping for a happy ending, but I don’t know how realistic that is!

3 thoughts on “The Ask and the Answer: A Discussion

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