[Very adult themes. I don't think I'd recommend this to my fantasy/sci fi loving middle schoolers--or at least notIntense, dark, bitter, scary. Good.
[Very adult themes. I don't think I'd recommend this to my fantasy/sci fi loving middle schoolers--or at least not without making sure their parents were OK with it. Sex, violence, etc., more graphic than in the current flood of YA apocalyptic books.]...more
It's the best book I've read this year , and I do not expect that to change over the next month and a half. Not only does the novel eerily portrIt's the best book I've read this year , and I do not expect that to change over the next month and a half. Not only does the novel eerily portray a similar frightening schism to what's going on in America today, but it's written extraordinarily well. I think, with all his notoriety particularly within the realm of academia/literary shoptalk, people forget what a great writer Roth is. His last four books have taken things to a new level each time and this was no different. The historical context is so convincingly portrayed, one of Roth's friends in Europe called him and said "my god, I had no idea this had gone on in America!" Uh, no, it didn't, Roth just wrote it so well that it seems like it must have happened!
His use of adjectives blew me away. For example, when the young Philip is helping his mother do laundry using the "wringer" you used to run your clothes through (between two rollers) to squeeze the excess water out before hanging them to dry: but now I steeled myself to drop each wet, deformed item of mangled laundry into the laundry basket and carry the basket upstairs... Wet and deformed because of course clothing resembles the limbs it will cover, and they've been run through a wringer... Ach, beautiful. Some great descriptions of the nuns he sees in the neighborhood (running the orphanage), as he passes them in their witchy attire with the naked little region that was the wimpled, plain, unornamented face, no nap, no softness, no fuzziness anywhere. The one uncovered area as naked. Love the imagery.
A very pertinent quote for today's times: ...nor had I understood till then how the shameless vanity of utter fools can so strongly determine the fate of others....more
FINALLY got around to reading this after having bought the hardcover when it came out. I loved it! Just as much as the first two. Apparently that is nFINALLY got around to reading this after having bought the hardcover when it came out. I loved it! Just as much as the first two. Apparently that is not the mainstream opinion--looks like most people dissed book 3. I don't know why. I loved that the voices opened up even further. I loved the connection to science -- that this wasn't anther vamps/wolves/magic book. I loved all the searching the different characters have to go through to decide who they really want to be, now, in THIS life. Thumbs up from me....more
cultures: set in the not-too-distant future on the mostly deserted Gulf Coast (after New Orleans is entirely underwater due to many "city killer" storms)
awards: Michael L. Printz Award for Excellence in Young Adult Literature by the ALA Finalist for the National Book Award
school use: Rooting this in a possible U.S. history/future is something I could see using as an example to help kids be imaginative about their future / our future. To think about consequences: what kind of world will we be leaving behind. To judge whether corporations should rule the world. Also nice tie to Katrina, something kids that age would be really aware of (probably the biggest disaster of their "time").
review: Really probably the only thing I didn't like about this book was that you could really feel most of the way through that it was a Book 1 of a series -- there were some issues that were too clearly left "to be explained later" (the mystery of one of the half-men [Tool] being able to survive without a master, for example). And as you noticed that you had fewer and fewer pages left, you knew that not all the plot points could possibly be resolved. It still worked for me because I love series books and I always hope every book will be one...but I also like those books to be a bit more rounded / to really stand on their own.
I liked that it was set in a world that feels like something that could actually happen. I liked the geographical details of things like The Teeth. I felt like the author really made things tangible -- I could feel Nailor's hunger. I liked that there were consequences and hierarchies even within the ship breakers themselves -- I think students could explore the idea of class within society here more comfortably than perhaps with a book like Ninth Ward where it might be too close to home.
I liked that none of the romance became explicit yet (although I expect the Nailer/Nita relationship to become moreso in later books); I liked that this sense of liking someone was also tied into other things. When Nailer explains how Nita is now "family" to him / a good way for kids to explore ideas around loyalty and what family/friendship/"crew" mean (we create our own families idea).
The stuff with the dad was a bit scary...but he's portrayed so beyond the ordinary and it's not the main story. I had to read "The Bone People" over the summer for student teaching, and the abuse here was definitely tamer than in that book!...more
Finally reading book #2 which has been sitting on my shelf for FOREVER.
There were some reveals in this one that I really was NOT expecting. I think IFinally reading book #2 which has been sitting on my shelf for FOREVER.
There were some reveals in this one that I really was NOT expecting. I think I liked it even better than the first book actually. I liked the clues and the mystery hunt and the sense of Amy really figuring out how to be in this world. The revolution stuff was a little eh, but that's to be expected. ;)...more
I read this book back in 2010... I reread it again today (5/16/2012) as I am finally getting around to reading book #3 but wanted to reacquaint myselfI read this book back in 2010... I reread it again today (5/16/2012) as I am finally getting around to reading book #3 but wanted to reacquaint myself with the characters first. This is such a great book. Grace and Sam are both wonderful characters, their contrasts are so clever, and the language of the book is just lovely....more
Just re-read this book originally read in 2010, reacquainting myself with the series before reading book 3. Loved how the script shifts here. Like thaJust re-read this book originally read in 2010, reacquainting myself with the series before reading book 3. Loved how the script shifts here. Like that you start getting more voices of the people around Sam and Grace. Lots of interesting challenges....more
grade level: late high school. it says "for mature readers" on the back -- and there is both sex, violence and language issues.wide reading for CI546
grade level: late high school. it says "for mature readers" on the back -- and there is both sex, violence and language issues. but a) nothing kids haven't already heard! and b) such an interesting apocalyptical vision. I imagine you'd actually have a hard time keeping kids away from this.
cultures: multicultural residents of the United States
school use: I probably wouldn't use this in my classroom but I would recommend it to my more mature high school students, particularly those interested in apocalyptic themes.
review: Yes I finally read this a million years after my friends. Really interesting idea. I like Yorick a lot, as well as agent 355. The political confrontation between the republican wives and the democratic senators was pretty hilarious--some of this rings very true or possible/probable at least I'm interested to read more....more
Well-written. Great idea. But... But I don't think it's quite worth of the hype it's getting. The first third of the book is very slow; Clark doesn'tWell-written. Great idea. But... But I don't think it's quite worth of the hype it's getting. The first third of the book is very slow; Clark doesn't give you any characters to care about, not even bad ones. The two truly likable people in that section of the book are minor characters without much "screen time", one of whom I found myself consistently wishing throughout the entire book that we got to see more of. The second third really starts to pick up though, and I found that the book just flew after that. I enjoyed it, really enjoyed some of the side female characters' storylines. Although there's one scene I just can't make my mind up on. (A character assumes something, I'm not sure we're meant to believe/agree with him or not.)
Loved some of the folklore, loved the mingling of historical fact and historical/fantasy fiction. ...more
REREAD December 2, 2012: Went back to reread this as I had bought book 2 in the series but then realized that Enclave and the Divergent books were allREREAD December 2, 2012: Went back to reread this as I had bought book 2 in the series but then realized that Enclave and the Divergent books were all mixed up in my mind. This is just as powerful the second time--some of my favorite imagery is Deuce's thoughts/reactions to the sun and the rain when they arrive Topside.
First read: Especially in the beginning, has a LOT of resonances with Veronica Roth's Divergent, which is extra spooky b/c they were basically published concurrently (one month apart, this one in April, that in May).
You'll also see a bit of I Am Legend going on.
Liked the world, liked the tone, liked the two main characters a lot.
This is the same author who writes the (adult) series about Sirantha Jax, a hyperspace pilot/warrior type (completely different world-type) which I have liked a lot....more
This book was really 100% action, just whizzed right along and covered only a couple days. You (&Allie) learn a lot more about her dad in this booThis book was really 100% action, just whizzed right along and covered only a couple days. You (&Allie) learn a lot more about her dad in this book--including some icky stuff he was doing all along. Pretty sure Shamus has become my favorite character. After Stone of course.