All The Wind The World by Samantha Mabry
Publisher: Algonquin Books For Young Readers
Release Date: October 10, 2017
Summary:Sarah Jacqueline Crow and James Holt work in the vast maguey fields that span the bone-dry Southwest, a thirsty, infinite land that is both seductive and fearsome. In this rough, transient landscape, Sarah Jac and James have fallen in love. They’re tough and brave, and they have big dreams. Soon they will save up enough money to go east. But until then, they keep their heads down, their muscles tensed, and above all, their love secret.
When a horrible accident forces Sarah Jac and James to start over on a new, possibly cursed ranch called the Real Marvelous, the delicate balance they’ve found begins to give way. And James and Sarah Jac will have to pay a frighteningly high price for their love.
*Received an early finished copy from the publisher*
My Thoughts: All The Wind In The World paints an immersive and atmospheric tale that follows Sarah Jac & James as they find themselves on the Real Marvelous ranch and find their bond slowly fading away! Mabry blends contemporary, dystopia, and elements of magical realism to deliver a wholly unique tale!
I really loved Mabry’s debut A Fierce And Subtle Poison and her wonderful writing easily brought her tale to life. So, thanks so much to the publisher for an early copy of All The Wind In The World~
Pretending to be cousins, Sarah Jacqueline Crow and James Holt travel from desert ranch to desert ranch to get enough money to one day stop working and hopefully start their own horse ranch and live peacefully together.
However when a desert storm accident forces them to flee and catch a train to find work elsewhere, they reach the Real Marvelous and find their relationship slowly shifting and changing entirely. With their sweeping tale of love to heartbreak, I found my own heart breaking as I read their relationship slowly fading away 😥
The fade and possible slow rebuild of the relationship was not only emotional to read about, but overall unlike any relationship I’d ever read in YA before!
Sarah Jac finds herself alone as she notices that James begins to change when she is told to take on an equestrian job, working with one of the ranch owner’s daughters, Bell. As she continues to work on the Real Marvelous she finds herself stuck and unsure whether she can break free from this supposedly cursed ranch!
As the story progresses, we learn more about her life before the ranches in Chicago and her younger sister Lane, who passed away quite some time ago.
Mabry blended a dystopia desert setting with contemporary magical elements (weaved throughout) in such a way that I’ve never read before. The mysteries surrounding the world and how it came to be actually made the story that much more magical for me!
Additionally, it was great to see diversity in this story! There was Sarah Jac, who is mixed-race and an m/m relationship towards the middle between Raoul & Leo (who is an important character from early on and as the novel progresses).
Because this novel is very character and atmospheric-driven, I did want the plot to be expanded on a little more and felt the pacing could have been just a bit faster. While I really loved the unique characters introduced, I would have loved for them to be developed more over the course of the story as well.
I loved reading from Sarah’s POV! Through the rich and atmospheric writing, the setting and way of life for jimadors (farmers) felt very gritty and real.
Especially through the setting, Sarah’s POV brings to life the hardship these workers faced continuously going from ranch to ranch to get enough to support themselves/their families, while enduring the grittiness of the desert!
As mentioned above, I adored the description and atmosphere of the desert setting! Taking place in deserts of Southwest Texas, there was such vivid description of the setting, weather, and grittiness of what Mabry portrayed and I loved that so much!
And overall the creativity of Maby’s stories always has me anticipating her next book!
All The Wind In The World is an atmospheric story which blends dystopia in the deserts of the South West with mystery, romance, and contemporary with hints of magical realism! Mabry’s writing builds a dark and gritty atmosphere which delivers a unique aspect to an equally unique tale!