Recently I have read The Compound is a 341 page science fiction book published in 2008 by S.A. Bodeen, an interesting book, about a boy named Eli, who during the story has been locked underground in a Compound by his father, during nuclear war. Once inside they need to survive for 15 years, but food and water are scarce, and things begin to seem suspicious in the Compound. I decided to read this book, because S.A. Bodeen was coming for an author visit, and I have a tradition of writing the author’s book when they visit.
In The Compound Eli, the main character, is bored of the dull life in the compound. While he is locked underground, playing with an ancient laptop, near his father’s office, he notices he has been given internet connection. According to his father no one else is left outside, so in general this is pretty tough on Eli. But now, he is faced with a tough decision, he can tell his family, or keep a life saving secret.
If I were the author, I would have changed the way the book ended, by making it less predictable In the end of the book, Eli uncovers that his father had locked them underground, as an experiment. In the end, Eli attacks his father and allows them to escape, and safely return home. I believe that the ending of the story was very predictable, and was a “disney ending”, where everything turned out alright, and they were all good and safe. I would have made it so that in the end, the world really had been in a nuclear war, causing Eli to feel super guilty, and putting his family at risk. That would have been an amazing cliffhanger.
I really liked the heavy description that the author used, to really paint that picture, for example: “My secret stash of candy ran out years ago, but I still remember the crinkly silver wrapper, and the rich chocolate of my Snickers bars”,(37). I really like that line, because at the time I was hungry, but I also believe that it is very meaningful, as it shows us that overtime, they lost more of what they loved, while being prisoners of The Compound.
Overall I believe that S.A. Bodeen’s The Compound is a very emotional story that really moves you as you read it. She overall does a good job and leaving the reader on the edge of their seat, I always found the urge to drop what I was doing, and read more. The characters are very easy to get immersed into and gets the creative juices in your brain flowing. Overall I would give this book a 9/10 for great plot and story, and would recommend it to any friend.