Posts Tagged With: science fiction

Review: The Here and Now by Ann Brashares

The Here and Now coverPrenna is an immigrant, living a new life in New York. But not from another country. Prenna and her community are from the future, a time when climate change mosquito-borne plagues have brought tragedy to all of humanity. Now safe in the 21st century, the community follows twelve stringent rules. The rules are to keep them safe, their leaders say.

Especially rule 12

We must never, under any circumstances, develop a physically or emotionally intimate relationship with any person outside the community.

Prenna knows all the rules, but Ethan won’t be kept at arm’s length. He keeps being her friend, no matter the things she can’t talk to him about. And when Prenna’s safe little world threatens to smother her, it is Ethan who helps her search for the truth.

The Here and Now is part dystopian thriller and part science-fiction story, but all of it is a compelling and gripping read. It will appeal to readers looking for a more substantial time travel story, one that explores the ethical implications of trying to change a future.

Recommended for grades 8 and up – some language, kissing, references to sex, references to murder, etc.

FTC Required Disclaimer: I received the digital ARC of this book from the publisher. I did not receive monetary compensation for this review. This review has been posted in compliance with the FTC requirements set forth in the Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising (available at ftc.gov/os/2009/10/091005revisedendorsementguides.pdf)

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Review: Adaptation by Malinda Lo

Adaptation CoverIt started with the birds. All over the country, birds dropping dead from the skies. And no one could say why. Or why some flocks flew right into airplanes, crashing them with all passengers

Reese and David were at an airport when it happened, on their way home from a school trip. With all flights grounded, their teacher rents a car for them to drive back to San Francisco. But when their teacher is shot by a would-be hitchhiker, David and Reese escape alone, trying desperately to make it home…until their car crashes on a remote highway in Nevada. When they wake, it’s clear that they were severely injured. What isn’t clear is the purpose of the highly classified government base they are on.

Reese and David just want to go home, to put the past behind them and get on with their lives.  But strange things keep happening to them. Reese’s scars are disappearing, and she is having strange dreams. When the government agents come for them, David and Reese are determined not to be kept in the dark anymore.

Adaptation is a clever science fiction story that will appeal to fans of Susan Beth Pfeffer’s Life as We Knew It and other post-disaster stories, as well as readers who enjoy a good conspiracy theory story. It is clearly intended to be the first in a series, as many things are left unresolved at the end.

Recommended for grades 9 and up – language, underage drinking and smoking, sexual references, making out but no on-screen sex

FTC Required Disclaimer: I received the digital ARC of this book from the publisher. I did not receive monetary compensation for this review. This review has been posted in compliance with the FTC requirements set forth in the Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising (available at ftc.gov/os/2009/10/091005revisedendorsementguides.pdf)

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Review: Nearly Gone by Elle Cosimano

Nearly Gone coverNearly has three rules: no boys, no trouble, and no touching. Only a few percentage points separate her from a chemistry scholarship that will get her out of her DC trailer park. Away from her neighbor the drug dealer, her mother the exotic dancer, and the sense of hopelessness that pervades her life.

But when a killer starts targeting the students she tutors after school, all of the rules will have to go. Trouble has already found her. To unravel the clues the killer has left for her, she will have to work with Reece Whelan, even knowing that the police have sent undercover to spy on her. But worse, she will have to use her ability to read other people’s emotions through touching them, even if it overwhelms her.

All the clues point toward Nearly being the killer. One by one, her students are killed, all while she is nearby, trying to save them. Leigh and Reece are racing against time to unmask the killer before it’s too late for both of them.

Nearly Gone will appeal to fans of mystery shows such as Bones, CSI, Law and Order, Criminal Minds, etc. , as well as readers who like their mysteries with high stakes and lots of suspects.
Recommended for grades 9 and  up — swearing, buying and selling drugs, sexual references, underage drinking, etc.

FTC Required Disclaimer: I received the digital ARC of this book from the publisher. I did not receive monetary compensation for this review. This review has been posted in compliance with the FTC requirements set forth in the Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising (available at ftc.gov/os/2009/10/091005revisedendorsementguides.pdf)

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Review: Variant by Robison Wells

Variant coverLongtime foster kid Benson Fisher knows that no one is going to get him out of the system. But he’s tired of foster care. Tired of bouncing around from place to place. Tired of “working” at his foster parents’ gas station for no pay. Tired of broken schools full of broken people. So he gets himself a scholarship to Maxfield Academy.

Now he’s trapped. Locked behind an unclimbable wall, under the watchful eyes of security cameras, he and the other seventy-some students divide into gangs under an uneasy truce. The Society wants to keep the rules, keep the peace. Havoc wants to live it up with no adult supervision. And Variants…Variants want to get out.

Benson wants to get out.

But the more he learns about the school, the less sense it makes. And then he discovers the secret that could change everything. But does it actually change anything?

Variant will appeal to fans of James Dashner’s Maze Runner trilogy, Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s GameThe Hunger Games series, and other dystopian series, although this is not a dystopian story, per se. This book blends elements of dystopia, science fiction, mystery, and psychological thriller into a highly entertaining book that you won’t want to put down until you reach the end.

Recommended for grades 6 and up – depictions of violence, descriptions of kissing, mild profanity.

FTC Required Disclaimer: I did not receive monetary compensation for this review. This review has been posted in compliance with the FTC requirements set forth in the Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising (available at ftc.gov/os/2009/10/091005revisedendorsementguides.pdf)

 

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Review: What’s Left of Me by Kat Zhang

What's Left of Me coverEva and Addie were born just like anyone else, two souls in the same body. They took turns learning to walk, to run to dance. But as they got older, neither of them faded. They were both still there. They weren’t settling.

Their parents took them to doctors, specialists, begged for more time. Finally Addie was pronounced normal. Eva was gone. They could start over.

But Eva isn’t gone. Only Addie knows that she’s still there, trapped inside their body, unable to move, unable to speak. Except to Addie.

Only Addie knows that Eva would risk anything to be able to speak. To walk. To dance. Anything.

But when Eva gets her chance, it opens up a whole new world for them…one more dangerous than either girl could imagine.

What’s Left Of Me is a dystopian story exploring ethical issues in a world not our own…yet shockingly similar. It will appeal to fans of Neal Shusterman’s Unwind series, Lois Lowry’s The Giver, and other thought-provoking dystopian literature.

Recommended for grades 6 and up – mild profanity, kissing, some graphic descriptions of medical procedures.

FTC Required Disclaimer: I did not receive monetary compensation for this review. This review has been posted in compliance with the FTC requirements set forth in the Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising (available at ftc.gov/os/2009/10/091005revisedendorsementguides.pdf)

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Review: Dangerous by Shannon Hale

Dangerous coverMaisie Danger Brown just wanted to go to astronaut camp. Her homeschooled world has seemed increasingly claustrophobic lately, and she’s wanted to be an astronaut ever since her dad put velcro on her clothes when she was small. She didn’t think she would win the sweepstakes, but she had to try. And despite having to leave her parents and her best friend behind, camp is the most fun she’s ever had.

But now a lot of things are happening that Maisie didn’t expect. She didn’t expect Jonathan Ingalls Wilder to be interested in her. She didn’t expect to get a ride on the space elevator. She didn’t expect to visit Midway Station. She didn’t expect to be shown strange alien artifacts. And she definitely didn’t expect to have to save the world.

Shannon Hale brings her knack for relatable characters and unique storylines to the world of science fiction. Dangerous will appeal to anyone who’s ever secretly wished for a radioactive spider bite or a batmobile. Comic book fans, science fiction fans, and anyone who’s interested in a fast-paced thriller will enjoy this book

Recommended for grades 7 and up — some language, some kissing, and references to sex

FTC Required Disclaimer: I received the digital ARC of this book from the publisher. I did not receive monetary compensation for this review. This review has been posted in compliance with the FTC requirements set forth in the Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising (available at ftc.gov/os/2009/10/091005revisedendorsementguides.pdf)

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Review: Impostor by Susanne Winnacker

Impostor coverTessa can be anyone. Her Variation allows her to absorb DNA and perfectly mimic another person’s appearance.

Madison is a serial killer’s latest victim. She was still alive when she was found, but she will never wake from her coma.

When Tessa becomes Madison, trying to draw the serial killer out for the authorities before he can strike again, the number of possible suspects is almost overwhelming. From Madison’s ex, who claims to desperately want her back, to Madison’s own brother, Tessa has no idea who she can trust. And Madison was keeping secrets, even from her best friend…secrets that might have led to her death.

Although the stress and danger of living a lie take their toll, the loving family Madison will never see again is incredibly tempting to Tessa. Just being a normal girl with a normal family and friends is something she never thought she would experience. While Tessa struggles to find the killer and deals with her ability going haywire, she also fights the urge to stay Madison, forever.

Impostor will appeal to fans of the X-Men with it’s obvious similarities, as well as to murder mystery fans.

Recommended for grades 8 and up – no on-camera sex, but kissing and sexual references, plus quite a bit of violence

FTC Required Disclaimer: I received the digital ARC of this book from the publisher. I did not receive monetary compensation for this review. This review has been posted in compliance with the FTC requirements set forth in the Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising (available at ftc.gov/os/2009/10/091005revisedendorsementguides.pdf)

 

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Review: Fire & Flood by Victoria Scott

Fire & Flood coverTella’s brother is sick. Dying. The doctor’s don’t know what’s wrong with him. Her parents have moved them to the middle-of-nowhere Montana. It doesn’t seem like things could get worse. When a mysterious blue box appears on her bed, Tella thinks it’s from her parents; a gift to make up for taking her away from everything she’s ever known.

It’s not.

Tella has been invited to join the Brimstone Bleed, an epic race whose price is the Cure,  something that could actually save her brother’s life. With the help of her Pandora companion and friends she makes along the way, she must navigate lush jungle and barren desert. And it’s not just nature that could kill her–there are people out to get her as well.

Fire & Flood will face ineveitable comparisons to The Hunger Games, but it is very much its own story. In many ways this story is more similar to the Harry Potter series, with fantastical things happening right under the surface of the  “normal” world. That said, this story will appeal to fans of The Hunger Games, The Maze Runner and other dystopian stories, as well as to readers who enjoy wilderness survival and adventure stories.

Recommended for grades 8 and up — Some language, violence, and there are implications that Tella feels sexually threatened by another character.

FTC Required Disclaimer: I received the digital ARC of this book from the publisher. I did not receive monetary compensation for this review. This review has been posted in compliance with the FTC requirements set forth in the Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising (available at ftc.gov/os/2009/10/091005revisedendorsementguides.pdf)

 

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