for Z for Zachariah by Robert C. O'Brien
Twelve-year-old Ann Burden knows how to take care of herself. As the last person alive, she has no choice. The war and its nuclear fallout kill everyone she holds dear and, seemingly, obliterate all but the tiny settlement where she and her family once lived together. Then, one day, she sees smoke. Mr. Loomis, a man in a strange plastic suit and mask, walks into her valley. Wary yet hopeful, she secretly and hesitantly envisions marriage and restarting the human race, ideas that are quickly curbed when Mr. Loomis falls critically ill from radiation sickness. As Mr. Loomis grows stronger under Annís dogged care, he becomes tyrannical, controlling and cruel. Ann confronts Mr. Loomisís brutal violence with relentless pacifism; then, she is forced to decide whether saving her life is worth taking his. Told through Annís increasingly desperate diary entries, this dystopian novel sketches one possible, and ravaged, world after nuclear war.
The Jane Addams Children’s Book Award: Honoring Peace and Social Justice in Children’s Books Since 1953. © Scarecrow Press, 2013. Used with permission.
Ann Burden thinks she may be the only person left alive in the world, in a valley untouched by nuclear radiation. She has survived alone for a year, when a scientist protected by a "safe suit" arrives in the valley. His controlling and obsessive behavior force Ann into confrontation and a crucial decision about her future.
Publisher description retrieved from Google Books.