Thursday, November 21, 2013

Thursday Three: Dytopian YA Favorites

Ever since The Hunger Games hit it big, Dystopian novels have flooded the Young Adult market.  In honor of the movie release of Catching Fire (tomorrow), I'm going to tell you about three of my favorite dystopian young adult novels.  So far a lot of series have started really strong, and not been able to live up to it, in my opinion.  There are a lot of dystopian trilogies that fell short for me.  I'm hoping these three don't do that too. 
134557821.  Shatter Me
I'm going to start out by saying you will either love this book or hate it.  I have friends on both sides of the spectrum.  Like all books, this series isn't for everyone.  When I first read it, I loved it.  The main character, Juliette, is very Rogue-like (X-Men).  She causes torment and eventually death to anyone who dares to touch her.  The Reestablishment wants to use her as a weapon.  All she wants is freedom and to be normal.  This is a very character driven first book.  Most of the book is a glimpse inside Juliette's tortured head as she stays locked up in an asylum.  When Adam is assigned as her new roommate, she soon discovers that perhaps he is the one person who can save her from herself.  We only catch brief glimpses of the dystopian society this takes place in, but the rest of the series focuses a lot more on it.  The villain, Warner, is one of my favorite book villains of all time.  I absolutely love him.  He is what made this book really interesting to me.  The possibilities for this series have me excited.  There is a novella told from Warner's POV and book 2 is also available.  The trilogy will conclude in February. 
105763652.  The Darkest Minds
This book also has a main character who is terrified of her powers.  In this dystopian society, all kids either die at age 10 or develop powers.  The survivors are locked up in what their parents are told are "rehabilitation camps."  In reality they resemble the death camps of Nazi Germany.  Powers are color coded.  All the kids with Red and Orange disappear (most are killed).  Ruby is an Orange, but is able to disguise herself as a Green.  At age 16, Ruby escapes and finds herself on the run.  She is highly sought after by the government, who want to use her and her powers (she can erase memories and more) for their own good.  She teams up with other kids on the run, all seeking out the mythical East River--a camp for kids like her, run by kids like her.  Only, when they find it, the camp is not at all what they had in mind.  Most of the book is spent on the run.  Ruby, Zu, Liam and Chubs are just trying to survive.  Unlikely friendships are forged and alliances made.  Boy what a cliffhanger.  I really have high hopes for this series.  Book 2 just came out and I can't wait to see what happens next.
9275658 3.  Legend
 This book kept popping up on "best" lists and I finally gave it a try.  I was not disappointed.  From alternating points of view, the story follow two 15-year-olds that couldn't be more different.  June is a privileged child prodigy, on course to be a top government/law enforcement agent.  Day is the countries most wanted and notorious criminal/hero to the oppressed people.  When June's brother is murdered, Day is the prime suspect.  June will stop at nothing to take Day down.  When the two actually meet though, they discover they may not be as different as they thought, and perhaps everything they have always thought about their government/society is not as it seems.  This first book focuses more on Day and his background.  Book two focuses more on June's character.  Book three just came out and I'm excited to find out how the trilogy wraps up.  The characters are fantastic and the story is both suspenseful and engaging.  None of the characters have powers in this series, so survival depends on brains and guts alone. 

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