One million cloned soldiers. A nation imprisoned. A group of neurodiverse rebels fighting back.
Britain as we know it lies destroyed. In the aftermath of the most daring military coup in history, the surviving population is crammed inside giant Citadels, watched over by an army of cloned soldiers. The hope of a nation lies in a tiny number of freedom fighters hidden...more
I read this book as its follow-up was shortlisted for the 2020 Guardian Not The Booker prize after a very strong show of support (which is easy to understand given how many followers the author has on You Tube and Facebook channels from his “Autistic not Weird“ website, and given the 500+ people who subscribed in advance to crowdfund this book on Unbound and are listed at the start and end of the book).
The set up of the novel is that an increasingly influential private d ...more
I highly recommend this book! ...more
I love it, can’t wait for the next book in the series!
This book should be on every child's book shelf and in every library. It opens up a view into others minds and resolving problems and the consequences. It has a good age variety to share the story and view point. An excellent read from age 9 to adult. ...more
LIMITED SPOILERS BELOW- referencing certain plot events but no reveals or major surprises.
I’ve read this book twice now and had similar (but not identical) thoughts both times I’ve read it. I think it’s a good book that is worth your time, especially if you’re actively looking for good representations of autism or neurodiverse characters within the YA genre.
That being said, as someone who tries not to read YA (or at least most YA, Mistborn really does it for me because of the magic), the act ...more
Though we’re never told exactly how this scenario came into play, we’ve got a world where one person has used clones to take over the country. However, there’s a small group who have not fallen...a group of teenagers from a special needs school. Though they’ve spent their lives being made to feel they’re not normal, in this scenario their ability to think outside the normal parameters is what’s helped them survive.
The writer’s knowle ...more
I really liked the cast, and the choice of relying on different people for a change: not your typical teenagers, but clearly the "underdogs", those seen as "problem children", considered f ...more
"You're not defective. You're not broken. You're not the wrong kind of person. And don't let anyone in this world tell you otherwise. You and your friends are exactly who they're meant to be."
The author's note at the very beginning really started this novel off on the right foot, advising readers to view the characters as representations of themselves and nothing more, reminding us that even in united communities, there are differences, and that we can never compare one experience to another ...more
One of the unique this about this novel is the fact that a good chunk of the soldiers are considered "special needs" or on the spectrum. And how they are portrayed is really important and a good step forward. ...more
When it came to the plot, I didn't find it the most original ever, with very obvious plot holes and plenty of things that simply didn't make any sense or weren't believable but I haven't read many books that were able to make use of tension as a plo ...more
A refreshing read that focusses on a group of neurodiverse teenagers and how after being defined by their perceived 'weaknesses' for their entire lives, they are needed and relied upon to 'play to their strengths' to rescue the UK population. This dystopian future based novel is fast-paced and action-packed throughout.
The novel ...more
If anyone has a hope of surviving New London’s horrific conditions, they’ll need the help of a small group of people who are used to being overlooked and mistreated by society. So, why do the Underdogs care about everyone else? Because the ...more
This piece of character and plot driven wonder shows what society does with people, with itself. People label and judge all those who aren't 'normal' - forgetting how ugly humanity in itself can be. This work shows the perspective of people labeled different - ADD, PDA, Autism - but shows their internals; and show how they are still human. ...more
By the time it came in, I was genuinely curious about the book based on the reviews and teasers I had seen, and having read a couple other dystopian future novels and enjoyed them, figured it would be worth the read.
I read the book in one sitting and have read it multiple times. I pre-ordered the second book and anxiously wait ...more
The first few chapters feel really awkward and are hard to get through. Things are spelled out simplistically when a more nuanced approach may have been more engaging; in those first few chapters I felt like I was reading a creative writing essay from a high school lit class. I almost gave up...but I'm glad I stuck with it!
The writing style improves dramatically (almost like the author finally found his groove about 1/3 of the way in). The characters ...more
For a moment I doubted my own decision to request this book. 'Am I really going to read an action-based young adult again?' I wondered. Yes, I did request this book, and I was going to read it. I am glad I did. Because of it, I got to know those great young people. Those people who have insight in who they are and what keeps them going - and what stops them sometimes. Those wonderful, unique people. The action scenes and plo ...more
Imagine our world overtaken by a sadistic madman who impressions the populace in third world conditions in his giant Castle. He controls it by using throw away soldiers.Now imagine that the only hope for survival comes from a group of people society would normally call broken and you have the story of underdogs.
Fans of hunger games and maze runner will love this story. It will also open you up to understanding the very people who make this world unique. A story that sh ...more
It is raw, the thoughts going through the ...more
Meet the Underdogs, the ragtag team of neurodiverse kids who represents the last hope to save Britain from the claws of tyranny. The author crafts an interesting and compelling action story, with a simple yet effective plot, but the characters are the ones to shine: their difficulties are never glossed over, but they contribute to their strength, and the author manages to depict life while be ...more
I found the diverse group of characters to be a welcome addition to read about. You will really come to care for them. The story it’s self is a dynamic and engaging read with some interesting ideas. Can’t wait for the next book.
A group of neurodiverse teenagers fighting against a big bad establishment, what more could you ask for?! Well for me I would have like a bit more depth to the characters. It felt more like a (very good) screenplay than a novel, waiting for the actors to add the final level of sparkle. Having said that I doubt I’ll forget The Underdogs any time soon.
Found it a little hard going to begin with, but the story and characters definitely grew on me, and by the end I HAD to keep reading to know who survived (or didn't).
The 'special' traits of the majority of the characters actually became irrelevant the more I read, although these traits also helped them find solutions to certain situations. ...more