Category Archives: dystopia

Empty by Suzanne Weyn

emptyIf you’re looking to scare yourself into being more environmentally conscientious, this is a book you should probably read!  Not only does it provide an entirely plausible scenario for how individuals will be effected when oil starts to run out — including but not limited to gasoline shortages and electricity blackouts — but it also goes into more global ramifications, like the potential for war. Continue reading

The Selection [series] by Kiera Cass

selectionSo, as I did with Divergent, I waited until the third book of this trilogy was about to be released before I started to read the first book.  I didn’t want to be stuck waiting [most likely impatiently] for the release of final book of the series like I am with the Lunar Chronicles.  But, lo and behold, it seems all my planning was for naught… because there’s now a FOURTH book!  Even though the audiobook for The Selection Stories: The Prince & The Guard had a sneak peek of The One — which it touted as the “thrilling conclusion” to the trilogy — I now have to wait until MAY 2015 to get my hands on The Heir…  And I have a sneaking suspicion things won’t even end there since GoodReads lists a 5th (currently unnamed) book.   /sigh Continue reading

Elemental by Antony John

ElementalIf you’re a sucker for dystopias, like I am, you’re definitely going to want to check out this trilogy — especially since the third book just came out and you won’t get stuck waiting for more books to be published!  In this world, most people are born with the power of an Element — earth, water, wind, or fire.  They can both sense and control their Element.  Someone who was a wind elemental, for example, could sense exactly how quickly a storm was blowing in and/or use the wind to fight off an enemy.  This book reminded me of Avatar the Last Airbender, which means I’ll need to pass it along to my son when he gets just a little bit older!

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UnDivided by Neal Shusterman

undividedI think I’ve mentioned on my blog that I no longer review all of the subsequent books in trilogies and series that I read because it’s often hard to summarize without spoiling the earlier books in the trilogy/series for people who haven’t read them yet.  (If not, I have now!)  Plus — let’s be honest — it also helps me not to fall behind so badly on my reviews if I don’t include every book I read on this blog.  But, I just can’t let this book go without comment!  Neal Shusterman has completely BLOWN. MY. MIND!  If his story is not enough, in and of itself, to show you the insane path that humanity is blazing into the future, the included hyperlinks for stories which make the case for a future in which “unwinding” actually happens will scare the hell out of you.  The thing I am most grateful about with UnDivided, nonetheless, is that the story is actually done.  I have spent far too long wondering what happened to Connor, Risa, Lev, and the rest of the gang, so THANK YOU Neal for finally giving me closure!

Happy Reading!

Four: A Divergent Collection by Veronica Roth

fourI find it kinda funny that I was *so* sure I would love the Divergent series that I waited for the third book to be released and then read the books back-to-back-to-back.  And after that, I *had* to read this collection of short stories as soon as it came out… Yet I still haven’t seen the Divergent movie, and I even forgot about actually posting a review for this book for three months!  I guess life just gets away from me sometimes, and taking a trip to the movies with a girlfriend isn’t always at the top of my list of priorities. Still, I should probably plan a girls’ night in to watch Divergent pretty soon, right?  ;-)

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The Here and Now by Ann Brashares [ARC]

The Here And NowI am pretty sure the only Ann Brashares books I had read before this ARC were from the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series.  It looks like I never reviewed them on this blog, though, so I can’t simply link to what I thought of them.  Instead, I will quickly summarize by saying that they are basic contemporary “chick lit” books.  They primarily dealt with friendship, dating, and body image — and they were both realistic and well written enough that I’m not surprised to see that they’re still popular.  While this book was also well written and has a romantic element to it, it was VERY different in that it has a science fiction angle.

Prenna James is an immigrant, but she didn’t come from another country — she came from another time.  She, along with the rest of the people in her tight-knit community, traveled back in time from a future in which global warming had destroyed the world.  Warmer temperatures melted the polar ice caps, caused massive floods, and also allowed mosquitoes to thrive.  Even though cancer had been cured, human existence was threatened by a blood-borne plague reminiscent of AIDS.  Prenna’s time-traveling community has many rules, but the most important rules are to blend in, to avoid making any changes to “the past,” and to avoid intimacy with outsiders.  Despite worries about getting in trouble, Prenna has a hard time following the rules.  She just can’t understand how they can just sit by and watch people destroy the world instead of trying to make a difference.  Plus, of course, there’s the fact that she’s falling for an outsider named Ethan…

Happy Reading!

Maggot Moon by Sally Gardner

Maggot MoonThis was one of those audiobooks where I didn’t really feel like I completely “got it” but I kept on listening anyway.  It won a 2014 Printz Honor, so I figured it must have literary merit even if I wasn’t feeling it, right?  Either way, I now have the ability to “booktalk” it to any library patrons who might ask what it’s about, and that is always key.

Standish Treadwell lives in an alternate reality in which “the Motherland” [England?] is in a race to the moon and operates much like WWII Germany — with ghettos of people segregated from the rest of the population and forced to work in labor camps for mere scraps of food. (Especially since I had just listened to Rose Under Fire, the constant deprivation and brutality definitely reminded me of the Holocaust.)   He lives in Zone 7 (one of the poorest areas) with only his grandfather, since his parents ran away in an attempt to escape the totalitarian regime.  Standish attends an all-boys school in which teachers openly favor kids from well-to-do families and those who come from families of government informants.  It’s not uncommon for kids to pick on or beat up on one another, and teachers often discipline via corporal punishments like caning.  Though he seems to be concerned that he has a learning disability of some sort [dyslexia?], Standish is quite clever and determined to figure out a plan to stand up to his government for the good of all mankind.

Happy Reading!