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Category Archives: Sci-Fi

Maze Runner

Title: Maze Runner
Author: James Dashner
Series: Maze Runner
Recommended for: 6th Grade and up
Pages: 375 Pages
Call Number/Link:  TEEN FICTION DASHNER, J.

Synopsis: Sixteen-year-old Thomas wakes up with no memory in the middle of a maze and realizes he must work with the community in which he finds himself if he is to escape.

I enjoyed the book, it has a similar feel to the dystopians that came out at the same time.  This book has adventure, danger, and a mystery to solve. Right from the beginning Thomas is trying to figure out what is going on and he has to draw stuff out of the Gladers to pieces together the situation. At first I thought they weren’t saying what was going on, because they were secretive, but it really comes down to most of them had no clue.  At times it could be slow, but I feel that the author was giving you more insight to what some of these boys felt having been in the glade for years. I have already started the next book so I can figure out what happened to the world.  This is part of three book series with two prequel books.

 

 
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Posted by on June 12, 2017 in Dystopian, Sci-Fi, Teen

 

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Nemesis

Title: Nemesis
Author: Brendan Reichs
Series: Project Nemesis
Recommended for: Grade 7 & up
Pages: 443
Call Number/Link:  Teen Fiction Reichs, B.

Synopsis: He killed me. He killed me not. He killed me.

It’s been happening since Min was eight. Every two years, on her birthday, a strange man finds her and murders her in cold blood. But hours later, she wakes up in a clearing just outside her tiny Idaho hometown—alone, unhurt, and with all evidence of the horrifying crime erased.

Across the valley, Noah just wants to be like everyone else. But he’s not. Nightmares of murder and death plague him, though he does his best to hide the signs. But when the world around him begins to spiral toward panic and destruction, Noah discovers that people have been lying to him his whole life. Everything changes in an eye blink.

For the planet has a bigger problem. The Anvil, an enormous asteroid threatening all life on Earth, leaves little room for two troubled teens. Yet on her sixteenth birthday, as she cowers in her bedroom, hoping not to die for the fifth time, Min has had enough. She vows to discover what is happening in Fire Lake and uncovers a lifetime of lies: a vast conspiracy involving the sixty-four students of her sophomore class, one that may be even more sinister than the murders.

Review: This book had such a great premise. However, it utterly and completely failed. After reading 400+ pages, I still can’t tell you WHAT is going on. I’m not sure the author/book quite has an idea as well. It was a bit like reading whiplash to be honest. One moment we’re trying to figure out if she’s having psychotic breaks then we’re at conspiracy theories and then we end at…well, I’m not quite sure where we end up. But it’s doesn’t make much sense. And perhaps in book two, more will be revealed/it’ll make sense, but I’m not sure I want to even wade in that world again. There may be some teens who love this head-spin tale, but for most I think this book will them simply frustrated.

 
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Posted by on May 31, 2017 in Sci-Fi, Teen

 

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Into the Dim

intothedimTitle: Into the Dim
Author: Janet B. Taylor
Series: first book in series
Recommended for: 7th grade and up
Pages: 425 pages
Call Number/Link:  TEEN FICTION TAYLOR, J. 

Synopsis: Sixteen-year-old Hope Walton travels back in time to help rescue her mother, a member of the secret society of time travelers, who is trapped in twelfth-century England in the age of Eleanor of Aquitaine.

I like the whole time travel aspect, but this book was just ok.  I almost didn’t finish the book because I just wasn’t interested.  I was not big on the main character, who in the beginning is portrayed as weak and has tons of phobias, but then all of a sudden she is able to overcome all her phobias.  I really wouldn’t recommend the book.

 
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Posted by on April 21, 2016 in Sci-Fi, Teen

 

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MARTians

MArtians

Title:  MARTians

Author:  Blythe Woolston
Series:
Recommended for: 8th grade and up
Pages:  216
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.

 
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Posted by on March 2, 2016 in Dystopian, Sci-Fi

 

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Burning Midnight

25489041Title: Burning Midnight
Author: Will McIntosh
Series:  N/A
Recommended for: Grade 7 & up
Pages: 320
Call Number/Link:  Teen Fiction McIntosh, W. 

Synopsis: Seventeen-year-old David Sullivan’s life is about to change—all because of one tiny, priceless item found in the murky bottom of a Brooklyn water tower.

Sully is a sphere dealer at a flea market. It doesn’t pay much—Alex Holliday’s stores have muscled out most of the independent sellers—but it helps him and his mom make rent.

No one knows where the brilliant-colored spheres came from. One day they were just there, hidden all over the earth like huge gemstones. Burn a pair and they make you a little better: an inch taller, skilled at math, better-looking. The rarer the sphere, the more expensive—and the greater the improvement.

When Sully meets Hunter, a girl with a natural talent for finding spheres, the two start searching together. One day they find a Gold—a color no one has ever seen. And when Alex Holliday learns what they have, he will go to any lengths, will use all of his wealth and power, to take it from them.

There’s no question the Gold is worth millions, but what does it actually do? None of them is aware of it yet, but the fate of the world rests on this little golden orb. Because all the world fights over the spheres, but no one knows where they come from, what their powers are, or why they’re here.

My Review: The start to this one is a bit slow. I’ll admit I jumped into it without re-reading the description so it took me a good 20-25 pages to really understand what was happening.Once I got the concept, I did enjoy the book. The start is where it really shines. Sully meeting Hunter, them going hunting, and the bit of luck they find together. It’s when they going off to search new and, hopefully, untouched locations that it starts to drag again. The whole searching of water towers was a bit tedious. But once they find that mysterious Gold, things kick into high speed. Maybe a little too much.

Once the Gold is found, they’re immediately on a trip to find the other. Four teenagers, alone, with no idea where they’re going. I’m not sure why any parent would think that is a good idea, but I suppose the lure of money is enough to say okay to anything. Of course, they’re also being hunted by the main baddie (if you can call him that) and he’ll start at nothing for the Golds. Of course, nothing is quite as it seems and what the Golds (and Midnights) release is not good. (There’s also a lot of suspending belief at this point, too, you just kind of have to roll with it)

What does it bring? Well, I won’t ruin it, but it’s not completely unexpected though either. I was a bit disappointed in the solution though. It felt too easy and almost like a cop-out. I would have liked to have seen more happen. It just felt unsatisfying to say the least.

Overall, it was still a fun read and I would easily hand this to kids just exploring the Sci-Fi genre. It has a 5th Wave feel to it, but I’m not sure teens who have read that series would be completely satisfied with this one. I would suspect there may not be enough grit/depth to this one for their tastes.

 

 
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Posted by on February 23, 2016 in Sci-Fi, Teen, Uncategorized

 

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Material Girls

material girls

Title: Material Girls
Author: Elaine Dimopoulos
Series: N/A
Recommended for: Grades 4-8
Pages: 239
Call Number/Link: TEEN FICTION DIMOPOULOS
Synopsis: In Marla Klein and Ivy Wilde’s world, teens are the gatekeepers of culture. A top fashion label employs sixteen-year-old Marla to dictate hot new clothing trends, while Ivy, a teen pop star, popularizes the garments that Marla approves. Both girls are pawns in a calculated but seductive system of corporate control, and both begin to question their world’s aggressive levels of consumption. Will their new “eco-chic” trend subversively resist and overturn the industry that controls every part of their lives?
Smart, provocative, and entertaining, this thrilling page-turner for teens questions the cult like mentality of fame and fashion. Are you in or are you out?

I enjoyed ‘Material Girls’, it’s a different take on they dystopian genre.  There’s no meteor strikes, rising oceans, or police state.  Society is controlled through social media and consumerism, especially clothing.  As a trend setter, Marla must scan the bar codes of everything she puts on in the morning to make sure it hasn’t gone out of style overnight.  She begins have trouble at work because she stops recommending the strange and impractical clothing the company wants to promote. Both she and Ivy, the other main character, start to see how they’re being used to keep people buying impractical fashions that they don’t need.  The ending let me down a little.  How can getting people to buy even more clothing, even if it is ‘eco-chic’ stop rampant consumerism?

 
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Posted by on January 11, 2016 in Dystopian, Sci-Fi, Teen

 

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The 100

9780316234498_p0_v2_s260x420Title: The 100
Author: Kass Morgan
Series: First in The 100 Trilogy (also a TV Show on CW)
Recommended for: High schoolers who liked the romance in Hunger Games
Pages: 323
Call Number/Link:  Teen Fiction Morgan, K. 

Synopsis:
When 100 juvenile delinquents are sent on a mission to recolonize Earth, they get a second chance at freedom, friendship, and love, as they fight to survive in a dangerous new world.

Review:
I saw the first episode of the TV on Netflix, and I decided to read the book when I heard that the TV show got great reviews. I was looking for something new to offer our dystopian fans. The book itself is pretty good.  It offers different viewpoints of things happening to the kids up on the space station as well as on the ground.  It delves into moral ambiguity, and it has some truly gut-wrenching decisions that need to be made.  All those things were great.  What I found less great, surprisingly, was the amount of romance in the book.  They took a book that should have been about so much more, and they overpowered it with hormones–and I like romance books!  If the romance had taken a backseat to the rest, I would have been more impressed.  As it is, I will still be recommending it, but only to those people who are Team Peeta or Team Gale.  🙂

 
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Posted by on September 25, 2015 in Adventure, Dystopian, Romance, Sci-Fi, Teen

 

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