SCI-FI:  Aliens attack earth by first changing the sun and infecting the water with a deadly toxin, killing millions. Then they unleash vicious, wild creatures to attack, turning them into zombie-like creatures that spread infection and won’t die. Jennie, her brother, and a small group of people fight for their survival, never knowing whether the next moment will be their last. 


The expectation is very high for a novel that describes itself as Falling Skies meets the Walking Dead, particularly for fans of either or both shows. Creeden succeeds at creating an original story that includes elements from those genres while giving them a creative twist. However, at times her mythology and world-building was confusing, needing more sound scientific basis/research, and was lacking in significant details to flesh out both her characters and their new world. In addition, characters were imputed knowledge about events, creatures, etc., when they shouldn’t have such knowledge or where it didn’t make sense for them to have it.


Jennie starts off as a shallow, immature, selfish, teenager, but over the course of the novel she matures beautifully into a strong woman, growing in her faith and connection to others. “Sanctuary” flirts with an unnecessary love triangle between Jennie and two estranged brothers, Hugh and Brad.


Despite moments of stilted and awkward phrasing, description, and characterization, and a somewhat anti-climactic non-ending, “Sanctuary” is an intriguing, creepy, inspiring page-turner that quickly draws readers in and will keep them on the edge of their seats!


Lacy Hill