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Out of Sight

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Most Citizens hold Outcasts in dim regard, but Sima never expected they’d throw her off the planet.

In 2411, overpopulation has spread a plaque of filthy, congested city to the corners of the Earth. Government has raised corruption to an art form, and no one hears the cries of those left to die in the dark passageways of civilization. Following the End of Nations, people cling to the only division left: social status.

Since running away from home four years ago, she’s managed to stay a step ahead of death―or worse. At sixteen, she’s getting too old to survive from begging, despite her best effort to pretend she’s younger. Worse, the sidewalks teem with little kids edging in on her turf, monopolizing Citizens’ charity with their wide, pleading eyes and genuine innocence.

A chance meeting with suspiciously nice cops leaves her more confused than ever. Between deadly gangs, unforgiving security forces, and a terrifying madam eager to exploit a girl her age, merely getting older is the biggest threat to her life. With no good choice to make, she risks the least of three evils.

Sima thought her life on Earth had been dangerous…

She hasn’t seen anything yet.

338 pages, ebook

First published August 13, 2018

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About the author

Matthew S. Cox

180 books259 followers
Born in a little town known as South Amboy NJ in 1973, Matthew has been creating science fiction and fantasy worlds for most of his reasoning life. Somewhere between fifteen to eighteen of them spent developing the world in which Division Zero, Virtual Immortality, and The Awakened Series take place. He has several other projects in the works as well as a collaborative science fiction endeavor with author Tony Healey.

Hobbies and Interests:

Matthew is an avid gamer, a recovered WoW addict, Gamemaster for two custom systems (Chronicles of Eldrinaath [Fantasy] and Divergent Fates [Sci Fi], and a fan of anime, British humour (<- deliberate), and intellectual science fiction that questions the nature of reality, life, and what happens after it.

He is also fond of cats.

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Displaying 1 - 15 of 15 reviews
Profile Image for Dr susan.
2,220 reviews25 followers
December 17, 2020
Wow! Incredible sci fi adventure

Please don't pass by Out of Sight because the main character is 16. This book has phenomenal world building, an enthralling plot, and wonderful characters. I laughed out loud and cried my eyes out. The Omnicomputer is a fantastic character on its own. The future Earth is a nightmarish, grim place. The new planet is fantastically alien. And there is a happy ending.
Profile Image for Kat.
717 reviews11 followers
September 18, 2018

This book was a fun read.

The main character is a girl who is stuck in a futuristic world thrown over with overpopulation and the dangerous nature that is the streets. She is a runaway and an outcast.

It was interesting to read how even though she is still young, she is struggling with all of the younger kids who are hoarding the sympathy from the higher socialites, leaving her with nothing left to beg for. But her struggles don't end there. She finds herself in trouble with her government and is stuck with a hard decision to make: how will she survive?

Overall, the story did take me a chunk of the way through to really get invested in the story, but when I did, I couldn't put it down. There are so many emotional ties to this book along with the value of family. Even though she left hers behind years ago, she comes across a few of the younger kids that she just might be able to call hers.

This is an enjoyable read, and I gave this one a 4 out of 5 stars. The dystopian world was interesting to discover along with the main character. I especially enjoyed the chapter illustrations that help give you a snapshot into what it may look like. It's technology meets a dirty, congested society.

Overall, this was a great dystopian, science-fictional story, and I think if you enjoy reading about social statuses and finding your family, this is a book you'll want to try.
Profile Image for Kirstian.
66 reviews62 followers
September 13, 2018
I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.

Out of Sight is one of those books that will leaving you thinking about it long after you have finished reading it.

Sima grabbed my heart and had me rooting for her from the very beginning. She is a runaway, an outcast living on the streets and begging for money just to survive. She has to face many challenges living on the streets and is looked down on by many for being an outcast. She is jealous of the younger children because it is easier for them to collect more money from begging while Sima must play off being younger just to get enough to eat. Even after avoiding them for so long when faced with taking three children under her wing or letting them die she steps up and acts like the mother figure she never had.

I felt a strong connection to Sima the more I read about her. Her character seemed real and her emotional struggles believable which made the story that much more enjoyable. The author does not give us some perfect hero, but a 16-year-old girl who simply wants to survive and is fighting with herself to do what she feels is right.

Also, the bracelet… that bracelet had me laughing at many points, but I will not say more due to spoilers.

Out of Sight is a unique turn from the everyday science fiction books I normally come across. It will leave you lost in thought and really appreciating the small things about life you would normally not pay much mind to.
Profile Image for Nancy (The Avid Reader).
2,326 reviews102 followers
September 25, 2018
In an apocalyptic future where war has destroyed the Earth children live on the streets begging for glints, money to trade for food. Out of Sight is about a sixteen year old girl, Sima who ran away from home four years ago because her mother’s boyfriend touching her in places he shouldn’t have.

At the age of sixteen, Sima is getting a little big for her begging to work any longer. Begging usually only works for smaller children as they are cute and innocent looking. Sima is running out of options to survive as she is getting older. She only has a few choices left to her to survive. The only options she has to look forward to, is to steal, work as a prostitute or join one of the many gangs on the street. Sima has been on her own for a long time and has managed to stay out of trouble with the police but her options are running out. What is she going to do?

Well she does have one option left to her. She can take the offer she got to leave Earth and go to another planet to help colonize it. She will get adopted and an education to boot. After giving it some thought Sima decides to take the offer to leave Earth.

Once she has left Earth the ship that she is on crashes and leaves Sima alone on what seems to be an uninhabited planet. Later Sima learns that she wasn’t the only one to survive the crash. Sima finds three other children that survived as well. Back on Earth Sima was not to fund of little children as they were taking glints from her. What is she going to do with these three little kids?

Out of Sight is one of those books that you don’t want to put down. It will grab you from the start and will keep you hanging on right up until the end. You will get so lost in it that you don’t even realize that you are reading anymore it is just a movie playing out in your head.

I highly recommend Out of Sight to anyone who loves a great adventure in a apocalyptic world.
Profile Image for Mutated Reviewer.
838 reviews16 followers
August 13, 2018
This is another book I can’t get enough of. This time, it’s the heart breaking yet still exciting life of sixteen year old Sima, who’s been homeless and on her own for the last four years. Never knowing a family of her own with her cold mother and absent father, the street is a dangerous yet still tolerable place away from her old home.

Check out the rest of my review here!

Profile Image for Dave Higgins.
Author 28 books44 followers
December 7, 2018
Blending the common truths of being a teenager and being homeless with engaging science fiction world building and exciting challenges, Cox creates a tale that will interest fans of young adult, social commentary, and ripping yarns alike.

Wars, disasters, and social collapse have turned Earth into to a single city-state distributed throughout the urban wasteland that covers the planet. Social status has replaced the old-fashioned prejudices of nation, race, and such, making poverty seem a sign of criminality or worse. Faced with a choice between sexual assault and losing her citizenship, Sima chose to run. After four years on the streets, it still feels like the least worst option, but the begging and pleading that worked when she was twelve is less and less effective with each day bringing more younger cuter children to tug heartstrings. Now her only options are prostitution, active criminality, or joining the terrorists; or the “clearly too good to be true” offer of a government scheme that gives outcasts a new better life.

Cox paints his world with a mix of dystopian tropes and details that would pass through a character’s thoughts at that moment, providing the reader with the background needed to understand both events and their consequences without distracting from the immediacy with lectures.

Filtered through the lens of a protagonist on the cusp of adulthood who has experienced both citizenship and its absence, this allows for the plot to be both a fast-paced science-fiction adventure and an emotive portrayal of disadvantaged youth betrayed by unchecked greed.

As with Cox’s other works, there are moments of humour or subtle reference which both offer the reader a moment of joy at having got it and make the bleakness of the story more horrific by comparison.

While the story doesn’t avoid the challenges of being a sixteen-year-old homeless girl, such as prostitution and periods, the majority of their impact is implied rather than explicitly detailed, making this novel suitable for less mature readers without damaging realism or empathy.

Sima is a very sympathetic protagonist, with a plausible mix of strengths and flaws. Plausibly for someone subjected to sexual assault as a child, she is aware of relationships as a thing but displays no romantic interests. Instead her doubts are shaped by the interplay of hope that things might work this time with the cynicism of a teenager whose parents really are against her.

The supporting cast display a broad range of maturity and morality: children who are just and unthinking simultaneously; police officers who are not cruel or corrupt but act from a belief they know what’s best; brothel owners who use children but only in certain ways; and criminals and revolutionaries who blur the line between self-indulgent rejection of society and believing the greater good justifies doing harm.

Overall, I enjoyed this novel greatly. I recommend it to readers seeking science fiction with depth and pace.

I received a free copy from the author with a request for a fair review.
Profile Image for Jennifer Reaves.
544 reviews1 follower
February 23, 2022
I "read" this book via Audible. I was quickly enthralled in the world of this poor girl. Although for a 16 year old at times she is a bit childish. A fun "Robinson Crusoe" story with a nice ending. I would like to see more of Sima in the future to see how the colony works.
Profile Image for Stephanie Lunsford.
83 reviews3 followers
November 7, 2019
Please write more

I already miss the characters. lease tell me there will be more! Lissa was my favorite so sweet! I was on the edge of my seat reading about their adventures out of the life boat! Brave & strong leadership by Sima! Another great book!
Profile Image for Thistle.
630 reviews5 followers
July 19, 2022
I haven't posted a review on Goodreads lately (too lazy to cross-post...), but I had to come out of "retirement" for this gem of a book.

Out Of Sight surprised me so much, I expected it to be just another not great self-published book (dystopian world, teenage girl living on the street, different classifications of citizens), but it turned out to be SO good!

Story was set in the future on Earth. At the age of 12, the main character, Sima, was sexually assaulted (not shown "on screen") by her absent and abusive mother's boyfriend, so she ran away from home and spent the next four years living on the streets. The first third of the book was about her rough life trying to survive.

Earth was collapsing (all the problems we have now, just a couple generations in the future). Humans had starting colonizing other planets. For this new planet they were going to, the government decided to collect up all the street kids and orphans they could find to send (childless adults going would take care of them). Sima was scooped up into that project.

The spaceship she was on had an accident, and she and a couple other kids' escape pods crash landed on an alien planet. She, a now-16 year old, had to take care of three kids ages 6-12. On an alien planet full of plants and animals that sometimes wanted to eat them. They had no supplies, not even clothing (they had been put into stasis for the trip in their underwear).

I really enjoyed reading about how the four of them had to survive (especially with the youngest girl having a sort of chronic illness).

[It was at this point where I bought the second book in the series, even though I'm trying very hard not to buy more books until I catch up on the 300+ older ones I already have.]

The last of the story ended up wrapping up the first two parts so well, that for the first time ever I kind of almost didn't want to read the next book in a series I loved. The first book was just such a perfectly complete story, I had no idea what book two could do to improve it.

If you're considering it at all, don't hesitate, buy this book!
22 reviews1 follower
January 3, 2021
I think this book would have been better losing 50-100 pages. The first 3rd of the book drags on forever establishing that Sima has a shitty life as a beggar.

The last two thirds are heartwarming, but I don't understand the lack of agency on Sima's part. It is immediately established that apart from some wildlife survival is relatively easy. Yet there is almost zero effort to better organize their survival, each day is just random activities with random outcomes.
Profile Image for Lady.
1,173 reviews13 followers
September 5, 2020
Outcast Life

This is a stand alone book so far. I can't wait to read more by this author! I hope there is a next book soon!

Sima is 16 and she tries to appear younger to beg glint from Citizens. She used to be a Citizen 4 years ago before she ran away to live in the streets. Her mother's boyfriend had touched her at 12 and her mother accused her of trying to steal the disgusting man so she fled. Living in the streets isn't easy but it's better than being raped or becoming a whore. Sima doesn't want to break the law. Breaking the law can get you killed. Will she be able to get away with begging much longer? Can she avoid the gangs and other creepers? Can she stay out of trouble with the police?

***This series is suitable for mature young adult through adult readers who enjoy dystopian sci-fi worlds with plenty of action and adventure as well as a few mysteries :)
Profile Image for Daniel Cox.
104 reviews
October 7, 2018
Definitely Not Out of Mind
How Matt Cox (no relation) continues to churn out one great story after another is beyond imagination (mine not his). With nearly 40 books published in just over four and a half years, Matt is a truly prolific writer in multiple genres and age groups. Even with so many characters from his previous books, the stories are not mere templates, and the characters are not cookie-cutter duplicates of earlier stories.
I don't like to talk about the story and possibly give away spoilers, that is the job of the author; I am here to give an honest review. When you read a story by Matthew Cox, you can expect several things. The story will have a stimulating, exciting, and well-defined plot; a well-developed, realistic cast of characters; and genuine, compelling dialogue. The manuscript will be well-edited and well-proofed, with an attention to detail far surpassing most authors. Out of Sight hits every one of these points and more.
Out of Sight is another example of a completely different storyline than he has written before, with a great new cast of characters. Leaving a dystopian Earth of the future, a group of children arrives on a world that is more alien than anyone could have imagined, in a way no one would have expected. Mirage is a 25th Century world that even Buck Rogers could not have handled as well.
Displaying 1 - 15 of 15 reviews

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