I have just had the pleasure of receiving and reading an early copy of John Barlow’s latest book….Islanders! I feel quite privileged to have read the book before its release date (which is later this month). I am a fan of dystopia….a big fan. So I feel like I know a bit about the subject. I will tell you Islanders did not disappoint. Here is the scenario: the people of this world have made a mess of things on the mainland. Power has gotten to their heads, greed has taken over and all sense of compassion is gone. The mainland is in disarray and survival is the only concern.
The book opens on an island where brave, young & loyal Ben is being chased by two rather large, overbearing twin boys…..the action starts on page one….I love that, and so do students. What better way to grab their attention and get them trapped in a book. Ben was born on the Island. The Twins were brought here. Ben is an Islander, and they are Survivors. Though they quickly discover they are on the same side. The chase leads them to the shore where they find something…someone….with a clue to where the Survivors came from and where Ben’s dad may be located. Ben is driven to find his father and to discover what is out beyond the island. He recruits a small group and they set off….off to find a better place, his father, but ultimately a solution for complete survival for all on the island. You see, they have been on this island for 13 years and supplies and food are becoming scare….they need a solution. Thirteen year-old Ben answers that call.
Their adventure takes them to a place with mutated creatures, genetically melted people, the Complex and answers to many questions. The story moves fast and is filled with amazing backdrops, unforgettable characters and a story you want to continue even after the last page.
I am certain there will be a sequel (I am hoping). This is one well worth reading!
The book is called BIRTHMARKED by Caragh M. O’Brien. Imagine a life where you live on the outside of a place called The Enclave which is surrounded by a high almost impassable wall. A place where the lifestyle is “advanced” and of better quality. You live on the outside….you have a certain job to do and are “rewarded” with food and humble shelter. Yet, you must remember not to question your position or try to rebel because the Protectorat will have you arrested and then death will follow.
Gaia Stone is 16 years old, and she is following in the path of her mother to becoming a midwife. As a midwife, on the outside of the Enclave, her job is to deliver babies and to advance three babies a month. How does one “advance” a baby? Well, the first three deliveries Gaia makes in a month must be advanced….they must be delivered to the wall within 90 minutes of delivery to live inside The Enclave away from their birth parents. Not a pleasant a part of the job, but the consequences for not delivering the first three babies could result in Gaia’s death.
Quickly, the reader learns that both Gaia’s parents have been arrested and taken for questioning inside the wall. Gaia is sure this means certain death for them, so she concocts a plan to break them out. She is a cunning, clever and extremely strong-willed character. The action is fast paced and kept me gripped to the story line. Once she enters into The Enclave we learn that their advanced society isn’t all unicorns and rainbows.
I finished it rather quickly and was hungry for me, so I downloaded the bridge book TORTURED and read that in less than 20 minutes. I have ordered the 2nd book in the series PRIZED, and am anxiously awaiting its arrival. I highly recommend this book to anyone older than 13 years old….
This is a great first book in a new trilogy by Veronica Roth. The title of this one is Divergent, and it was recommended to me by my friend Chris. We both like books with some sci-fi and some intrigue and a little dystopia thrown in for good measure. This is a great example of that! The book takes place in Chicago after the destruction of the country due to selfishness, aggression, dishonesty, cowardice, and arrogance. In order to combat this, there have been five factions created to prevent these qualities from taking over. These are Abnegation which values selflessness, Amity which values peace, Candor which values truth, Dauntless which values courage, and Erudite which values intellect. Everyone is born into a factions, and when they turn 16 years old they have ya choice to change factions permanently. No turning back. “Faction Before Family” is the motto. If they fail or have a change of heart, they become factionless…wandering the outskirts of town performing jobs that no one else would willing choose.
This is the story of 16 year old Beatrice who soon becomes Tris. She is born into Abnegation, yet she never feels completely comfortable in this faction. She shocks everyone on the day of the Choosing utilizing the information she received from her aptitude test. Her choosing triggers a string of events that kept me reading even when I had a ton of other things to do. She begins her initiation in her new faction and meets many well-drawn out characters….Four is my favorite. I really don’t want to write too much without giving so much away…..needless to say, I have ordered book 2 and am expecting it today in the mail! Cannot wait! Thanks Chris! Great recommendation!!