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Rootless (Rootless, #1)
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(Rootless #1)

3.51  ·  Rating details ·  1,085 ratings  ·  264 reviews
17-year-old Banyan is a tree builder. Using scrap metal and salvaged junk, he creates forests for rich patrons who seek a reprieve from the desolate landscape. Although Banyan's never seen a real tree—they were destroyed more than a century ago—his father used to tell him stories about the Old World. But that was before his father was taken . . .

Everything changes when Ban
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published November 1st 2012 by Scholastic Inc. (first published January 1st 2012)
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Average rating 3.51  · 
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Chris Howard
May 16, 2012 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
Well, it'd be foolish for me to review my own book... I poured my heart and soul into ROOTLESS, and spent a very happy twelve months working on the novel. To say the story is an important part of my life would be a huge understatement, and I gave it my all. So thanks to those who take the time to read my debut novel and share their thoughts on it. Though I should warn people who've yet to read it - watch out for spoilers! :)
Jan 28, 2013 rated it did not like it
I was so excited about this book when I found it, and it should have been completely perfect for me, but instead I find myself forcing to finish it. I really mean forcing too; I checked the weather at least five times and circled my favorite sites at least 10 before finishing what turned out to be two minutes worth of reading. I'll try to break down where Rootless and I went wrong.

"In this dazzling debut, Howard presents a disturbing world with uncanny similarities to our own. Like the forests B
Jul 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
We were on a road, and I knew that immediately. Being on the road’s in my blood, I guess. It’s hardwired into me. I felt the shake. The unpeeling feeling. I tried lifting my head but only my eyes would move. Drugged. Strapped in place. And back on the road, staring at the brightest sky I’d ever seen…


Seventeen-year-old Banyan has been on his own since his father disappeared mysteriously one night. In a treeless, ravaged world, his only future lies in continuing his dad’s work: building met
Aug 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: owned, arc
I'm not a good book reviewer, but I have to comment on this one. If you're looking for a fantastic dystopian thriller with lots of action & suspense, you have to read this. It also has one of the most unique plots I've ever read & lots of intriguing characters.

The book is about Banyan, a 17 y/o tree builder. After the Darkness, there were no more trees or paper, so he & his father built forests made out of steel & other scraps for clients. Aside from the lack of vegetation, the only food availa
Nov 03, 2012 rated it really liked it
Find this review and more at my blog.

Rootless is a book unlike anything I have ever read! It takes place in a bleak future where locusts are rampant, and no trees are left in the world. Locust have destroyed all food supply, they eat human flesh and a dystopian government controls all food supply. GenTech is the closest to a government that exists and they managed to genetically engineer corn that the locust can't eat. I don't want to say anything more because I don't want to spoil the book.

usagi ☆ミ
4.5/5 stars!

Okay, so, can I just say how much I love the amount of futuristic semi-apocalyptic westerns that are coming out of YA right now? However, here's one that hasn't been done before, at least not without using space opera as an additional sub-genre - a techno-western. Yep. That's right. And you know what? I totally got sucked in. Put on your seatbelt, folks. Not only do we have a techno-western, but it's a current social commentary-based one. Love it when authors can pull that off withou
Jun 18, 2012 rated it really liked it

Read more of my reviews at Dazzling Reads

They call it the "Rift", the disaster that turned the earth on a big piece of wasteland. This is the world of Rootless, a world where what they value the most is what we take for granted... trees.

Banyan is a tree builder... because in his world there are no more trees. With pieces of trash, junk, Leds and recycling stuff, Banyan learned from his father how to add to his world what they were missing the most. Until one day Banyan's father goes missing le
Jul 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Even if Chris Howard weren't my agent-brother, I would have been psyched to read this book!

ROOTLESS by Chris Howard (Scholastic, November 1, 2012)


Five things about ROOTLESS:

The whole concept of building trees is AWESOME! Yes, even if there were still trees in the world, I would still want one built for me. With glowing lights. I kind of want one now in my hot, Texas backyard to provide some shade-I-desperately-need. When my Bradford Pear out front finally dies, I am searching out Banyan.
Book Duo
Oct 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Rootless is the debut YA novel from Colorado author Chris Howard. Seventeen-year-old Banyan is a tree builder. Using scrap metal and salvaged junk, he creates beautiful forests for rich patrons who seek a reprieve from the desolate landscape. Although Banyan's never seen a real tree, they were destroyed more than a century ago, his father used to tell him stories about the Old World. But that was before his father was taken....
This will appeal to those who enjoy dystopian fiction - like Hunger G
Sep 02, 2012 marked it as to-read
Shelves: paused
This sounds really interesting.
Jul 26, 2012 rated it really liked it
I don't usually reiterate the summary but the plot is pretty complicated. In the words of Inigo Montoya: Let me explain. No, there is too much. Let me sum up.


The world has changed.

Rootless introduces us to a post-apocalyptic melting pot. The only food that grows is corn, the only living things are humans and locusts, and even the bounty of the ocean (if it is still bountiful) is out of reach because the moon is closer to Earth, and the tides are all crazy messed up.

In the middle of this,
Lisseth (Read-a-holicZ)
Aug 01, 2012 rated it it was amazing
**Originally on Read-A-holicZ,HERE!**

"This book was OMG CRAZY! It was filled with pirates,crazy man eating locusts, a sweet romance and filled with very intense & emotional scenes. LOVED it!"

The synopsis to this book was extensive but was pretty AWESOME sounding. The cover is pretty intriguing & gives you a sense of the book. It was a pretty fast & invigorating read. I was addicted to the story & characters instantly. PLUS i also liked that the author didn't shy away from cursing & other tough i
This book is a wild ride in a hostile and barren hell that the world has become that seems all too probable. There are no longer trees, or any nature. Everything that grows (including every kind of life but human) is now gone other than genetically engineered corn and mutated locusts who have no choice now but to eat humans. There is very little water, and GenTech, the company who controls the corn, keeps prices insanely high. And now someone is "disappearing" people at a greater and greater rat ...more
Oct 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I had the pleasure of meeting Chris Howard in Denver at a trade show and hearing him talk about his book. I immediately knew that I had to read it for a couple of reasons. As a bookseller, I am constantly on the lookout for books that will appeal to young men, because they seem to be harder to keep interested in reading, if I may briefly overgeneralize. Also, this one sounded really awesome. I was not disappointed.

Rootless takes place in the future, when locusts have destroyed all animals but
Valerie Dieter
Nov 02, 2012 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: 8-12 Dystopian Fans
Recommended to Valerie by:
What a ride! Unpredictable and engaging; I love a book that keeps me guessing, and boy is this one that does.

In a post-apocalyptic world, Banyan builds fake trees out of scrap for those who can afford the luxury, a job he did with his father until his dad went missing one night. Now he stumbles upon clues to his father's whereabouts, which could be the last place on earth where real trees grow.

The world is dominated by Gen-Tech, a company that was able to create a GMO corn that can withstand th
Jessica (The Psychotic Nerd)
So, I was reading this book for a TBR challenge in which I had to read the oldest books on my to-read list. In reading this book I found how much my interests have changed. I added this book to my to-read list six years ago, back when I was obsessed with dystopian books. Now, I'm burned out by them and I have a hard time finding anything new in them. So, I found this book to be uninteresting. There was little to no world-building, the characterization was lacking, and I realized that I was just ...more
Brian Clopper
Dec 21, 2012 rated it really liked it
Okay, I will not look at nail guns the same way again.

Also, I won't look at trees the same way again.

Now if you'll excuse me, I feel compelled to go hug a tree. Mind you, this will be a one-time embrace. I suddenly just feel they're owed one from me.
May 29, 2012 marked it as to-read
Shelves: arc, ebook
So... zombie locusts? Did I get this right? Yup, this is what I'm going with.
Jul 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
So imaginative, and thrilling, wow!!! Can't wait to see what happens next! Review forthcoming...
Leia Rose
DNF 55%

I hate not finishing a book this far into it. But I've got a stack to read and I was not enjoying this in the slightest. I had 4 major things that kept me from loving, or even liking, this book.

1. Characters. There's quite a few secondary characters and then the MC, Banyan. I didn't like any of them. They didn't make themselves likable and there was so little to admire. Banyan and his love interest just ... it was so quick and it consists of checking out her thighs and her this and that.
Bold, powerful, and thematically daring, Rootless is a masterpiece debut novel from Chris Howard. This astoundingly compelling and immensely satisfying novel tells the story of Banyan, a 17-year-old tree builder and an artist, who dedicated his whole life to creating trees from pieces of scrap metal and electronic elements, and is now about to be launched on a wild quest to find his missing father and the remaining trees on Earth.

They figured me too young for a tree builder. I could see it in t
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
3.5 Stars

As happens from time to time, I've read a book that is wonderful, but that does not work perfectly for the kind of reader that I am. Rootless by Chris Howard is a true dystopian/post-apocalyptic novel set in a nightmare landscape. The writing is beautiful and the characters are unique. I definitely like Rootless and I'm very impressed by Howard's debut, but I'm too easily confused by science for it to be the perfect book for me.

First off, I want to praise Chris Howard's writing to the s
Sep 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Fourth re-read 4.24.14-4.27.14 in preparation for sequel, The Rift which released 4.25.14. Print + Audiobook. LOVED AGAIN, obviously.

Second audiobook re-read completed!
Audiobook + Kindle, 3.15.13 - 3.17.13.

This was such a fun book to share with my guy while on a road trip - audiobook on the speakers while I followed along on my Kindle. Both the dude and I loved it!

Initially read 10.22
Jun 28, 2012 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 24, 2012 rated it really liked it
The Good

The plot twists and suspense.  One thing that Howard does very well and part of what made this book so great was the number of plot twists (especially near the end of the book). Leading up to the twists, Howard artfully adds layer after layer of obstacles, keeping the reader on the edge of their seat pretty much non-stop.
The trees.  I loved the idea that product of the environmental neglect (i.e. the trash) is the very medium through which Banyan is able to reintroduce gr
Oct 17, 2012 rated it really liked it
Review written and posted for the Mackin Books in Bloom blog,

Rootless is one of the most imaginative and ambitious books I have read all year. It is the story of Banyan, a nomadic teen who, with his father, builds “trees” out of scrap metal and LED lights. The book is set in the distant future, and the reason for the demand for these artificial trees is that real trees no longer exist, and the people that eke out a difficult existence in this nature-less world year
Valia Lind
Jul 29, 2012 rated it really liked it

Review at:

The book starts out with Banyan getting hired to build a forest for a wealthy man. The world has been torn apart by Darkness, and trees are something of the past. The landscape is destroyed, the locusts eat humans, and the constant dust storms make it hard to breathe. That is the world that Banyan lives in. His father was taken a year ago, and now Banyan is on his own. He’s a skilled builder, able to survive on the hard work he does. This seeme
Nov 13, 2012 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Stephanie Bibb
Jun 02, 2012 rated it really liked it
A little while ago I got my hands on advance copy of the book, Rootless, by Chris Howard. Seeing as how it was the first book I’ve gotten to see in this stage, I was thrilled. What first caught my eye was the cover. I still enjoy looking at it, and it's one of those covers where each of the details is explained throughout the book. Definitely a plus. (And also interesting to see the advanced copy cover versus the finalized imagery, considering my personal interest in cover art).

Overall, I’d give
Apr 28, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: library-2013
A pretty cover and a great story! Wow! I hope I remember to check out the sequel(s) whenever they are released!

Banyan lives in the future where there are no more trees because locusts have gotten to them and all the crops so the only food there is is genetically modified popcorn. His father has been kidnapped and he hasn't seen him in months. The two were tree builders - they would build trees for rich people out of scrap metal, and they were pretty darn good at it.

The book starts off with Ban
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I'm the author of ROOTLESS (Scholastic), as well as the follow-up THE RIFT, and the final book of this "Mad Max meets Lord of the Rings" tree-logy, THE RECKONING... Also the author of the rad new sci-fi thriller NIGHT SPEED. I live in Denver, but grew up not far from London. I studied natural resources in college, then spent eight years leading wilderness adventure trips for high school students. ...more

Other books in the series

Rootless (3 books)
  • The Rift (Rootless, #2)
  • The Reckoning (Rootless, #3)

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