Author: Blythe Woolston
Recommended for: 8th grade and up
Call Number/Link: MARTians
Synopsis: Last girl Zoë Zindleman, numerical ID 009-99-9999, is starting work at AllMART, where “your smile is the AllMART welcome mat.” Her living arrangements are equally bleak: she can wait for her home to be foreclosed and stripped of anything valuable now that AnnaMom has moved away, leaving Zoë behind, or move to the Warren, an abandoned strip-mall-turned-refuge for other left-behinds. With a handful of other disaffected, forgotten kids, Zoë must find her place in a world that has consumed itself beyond redemption. She may be a last girl, but her name means “life,” and Zoë isn’t ready to disappear into the AllMART abyss. Zoë wants to live.
Imagine a world run by WalMart. Schools, government, everything is run by the corporation. It’s a future made even eerier by it’s familiarity. Woolston has taken consumerism to it’s logical conclusion and it leads to a world where everyone works for one of the ‘Marts). If you have ‘potential’ you work in the store. If you don’t (or if you question the system) you could end up on a ship harvesting plastic in and ocean garbage patch, or something worse. The bits and pieces of details about this world that Woolston doles out are fascinating and thought provoking. This isn’t an action packed dystopian like Divergent. For teens who like interesting and thoughtful books with a dash of snark. Similar to ‘Feed’ by M. T. Anderson, ‘Unwind’ by Neal Schusterman, and ‘Material Girls’ by Elaine Dimpoulos.