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Uglies #4


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These days, it’s all about fame…

‘Tech-heads’ flaunt their latest gadgets, ‘kickers’ spread gossip and trends - and it’s all monitored by millions of cameras. The world is like a giant reality TV show, where popularity rules and everyone else is just an extra.

As if it isn’t hard enough being fifteen, with a face rank of 451,369, Aya Fuse is a total nobody. But when she meets a clique of girls who pull crazy, dangerous tricks in secret, Aya knows that if she can just kick their story, her popularity rating will soar…

Aya is sure she’s destined for a life in the spotlight, but is she really prepared for everything that comes with it - instant fame, celebrity… extreme danger?

417 pages, Paperback

First published May 10, 2006

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About the author

Scott Westerfeld

118 books19.9k followers
Scott Westerfeld is a New York Times bestselling author of YA. He is best known for the Uglies and Leviathan series. His current series, IMPOSTORS, returns to the world of Uglies.

The next book in that series, MIRROR'S EDGE, comes out April 6, 2021.

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5 stars
28,507 (24%)
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3 stars
34,397 (29%)
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 5,733 reviews
Profile Image for Abby.
601 reviews80 followers
January 2, 2008
Like the other books in the Uglies trilogy, Extras is fun and a very fast read. I read this book in about 2 and 1/2 hours, pretty much non-stop.

However, Extras raised the same prickly issues for me that the other books in the series did. My years as a student steeped in cultural studies and gender theory make it pretty much impossible for me to read works of popular fiction without subjecting them to critical analysis, and Westerfeld's books certainly lend themselves to this sort of critique. Especially if you are like me.

Like most dystopian science fiction, Westerfeld's books cast a critical eye on disturbing aspects of our present-day society -- obsession with looks, fame, etc -- by taking those aspects to extremes and weaving them into the very fabric of the future society. In Uglies & Pretties, everyone is "cured" of ugliness through a mandatory operation that takes place when individuals turn 16. In Extras, people earn money, respect, and privilege through the "reputation-based" economy, which rewards those who can make a name for themselves by publicizing and popularizing their thoughts, exploits, etc through the "feeds" (read: Internet). (If you think this is an interesting idea, you might want to check out Cory Doctorow's book "Down & Out in the Magic Kingdom" which explores the same conceit but with more skill and humor). In all of these books, the main (female) character desperately wants to be pretty, special, popular, famous or whatever, but ends up questioning the values of her society when she meets outsiders who don't subscribe to those norms.

The problem I have with Westerfeld's books is that these critiques, which are intriguing and thought-provoking, don't actually go far enough. Although the main character openly questions and in some cases initially resists the societal mandate to become pretty, special, famous, etc, she ALWAYS eventually ends up becoming pretty or famous even if it is against her will. Unlike all the other unenlightened pretty or famous folks who have never questioned their society's structure, however, she is well-aware of the pitfalls. She is now in fact doubly privileged -- as a pretty/special/famous person she has all the privileges that go along with being high-status in her society, AND she also has a sophisticated understanding of the "dark side" of her society that others can't see, through ignorance or fear or whatever other blinders they have on.

So although Westerfeld is clearly trying to show the reader how screwed up the dystopian society's norms (and by implication our own) are, in the end, he simply reinforces them. In Westerfeld's world, you can be hip to the ways in which our society's obsession with looks and celebrity oppress others and rail against the system, but you can still benefit from them at the same time. There's no sacrifice to make. And I guess that's why, as much as I enjoy Westerfeld's books, I can't help thinking that ultimately they're as shallow as the cultural norms they purport to critique.
Profile Image for Miranda Reads.
1,589 reviews155k followers
December 9, 2020
Authors, take note. This is how a companion novel is done!
You see, freedom has a way of destroying things.
Aya Fuse is just fifteen-years-old but already, the world has radically changed since Tally Youngblood freed everyone.

Just a few years ago, it was standard for all kids (16 and up) to get the Pretty surgery - where their faces and bodies were altered to be statistically perfect.

Only, there was a dark side to this surge.

The doctors would also implant a few lesions in choice spots of the brain in order to prevent the "Pretties" from ever being aggressive, angry or even remotely rebellious. They became "bubbleheads."

Now that that's all in the past, Aya and her country is recovering and (for the first time in decades) they need to develop a currency (turns out non-bubbleheads are far more greedy with the city's supplies). And the currency is fame.
Even mocking people helped their face stats. In the reputation economy, the only real way to hurt anyone was to ignore them completely. And it was pretty hard to ignore someone who made your blood boil.
The more famous you are, the more merits you can earn - which has prompted an explosion of creativity.

From tech-heads to surge-monkeys, Aya's city has it all. And all Aya wants is 1) become Pretty and 2) kick the biggest story ever.

Her older brother is a great Kicker - he brings light to many, many events throughout the city and spends life in luxury from the merits he earned.

Aya spent her entire life looking up to him, wanting to be him, and now she finally has the chance.

She's found a group, the Sly Girls, who do their absolute best to pass below the city's RADAR.

Aya is absolutely confused - why wouldn't you want to be famous...that is unless you have something to hide.

Suddenly, Aya is standing over the biggest story that will ever be kicked. And, it just so happens to be one that threatens her very life.
Dying is one of those things that can’t be fixed. Not by talking about it, not with all the brain surge in the world.
In short, I loved this one.

I adored how Westerfeld re-imagines the Pretty world and expands it with an entirely new cast (with a few appearances from some old favorites!).

The characters felt realistic and grounded - so much that I feel like I could carry on a conversation with all of them.

I loved how all the tech expanded and really grew wild in this world.

And, above all, I loved Moggle (Aya's old, outdated hovercam with a hilarious personality). Moggle stole ever single scene, and honestly, I would read a book from the perspective of that little robot in a heartbeat.

Definitely a novel to check out!
Life doesn't come with an instruction manual.
YouTube | Blog | Instagram | Twitter | Facebook | Snapchat @miranda_reads
Profile Image for Christina.
499 reviews15 followers
March 3, 2009
I really struggled to finish this book, and I thought it was significantly worse than the others in the series. A lot of the dialogue was agonizingly stilted. The characters actually said things like "Not good!" and "uh, oh!" to react to approaching falling objects and other imminent bumps-on-the-head. AAAAAARGH. Those lines drive me crazy enough in movies. I was horrified to find them in a book.
At one point, characters from two different countries meet and have some communication difficulties. After a few pages, the author seems to forget about the language barrier and the characters converse naturally, as if they're all speaking the same language. Then, toward the end, things get awkward again. SLOPPY. Sloppy writing, I say.
Thoughout the series, the characters were pretty one-sided. Tally (the protagonist from the first three books) entered this book about half-way through, and I was surprised to find her totally changed; whereas in the first three books she was a victim, thrown about by circumstances and surgeries, in this book she was suddenly a confident, rough-and-tumble leader. I just didn't buy it.
I don't think Westerfeld wrote very well from a teenage girl's point of view. Neither Aya nor Tally were very strong characters, and the "ew, bugs and mud!" part of this book really annoyed me.
I was also confused by the fact that this story took place in a different country from the first three. I wish that had been well established early on so that I didn't have to wonder what the location was for such a long time.
Wow, this review has gotten WAY longer than necessary. To sum up: There were some really good, interesting, creative ideas in the Uglies series, but they weren't good books.
Profile Image for Kat (Lost in Neverland).
445 reviews702 followers
April 19, 2013
Ugh. Finally done.

This is how this book made me feel;


because it was such a disappointment.

and maybe a bit of this;


because it was so boring.

and also;


because...well, it fucking sucked.

I've noticed that I've been rating these 'Uglies' books in a pattern:

Uglies: 5 Stars
Pretties: 4 Stars
Specials: 3 Stars
Extras: 2 Stars

Too bad they don't have a fifth one. If that had sucked as bad as this one, I would have loved to give that a one star, then the pattern would be complete.
Profile Image for Paige.
125 reviews24 followers
February 7, 2009
Honestly, this book was kind of a disappointment. I liked how it was all accumulated around the Japanese society, but other than that, I was expecting much more of this book. In my opinion, Aya is a very whiny, self-absorbed suck up. I don't like the way Scott Westerfeld portrays Tally in this either because he renders her as a know-it-all b word, to say the least. Which, I don't think Tally has ever been. Her character is not put to justice in this book.
Profile Image for Ahmad Sharabiani.
9,566 reviews56.5k followers
March 8, 2021
Extras (Uglies #4), Scott Westerfeld

Extras is a young adult science fiction novel written by Scott Westerfeld. The novel was published and released by Simon & Schuster on October 2, 2007, and is a companion book to the Uglies series.

Aya Fuse is a young girl living in the futuristic city of Yokohama. One night, accompanied by her hovercam Moggle, she crashes a party in New Pretty Town hoping to track down a group she saw surfing a mag-lev train, a story which she believes will make her famous.

She follows one of the group's members, Eden Maru, out of the party, but they nearly get away when she is distracted by Frizz Mizuno, a more beautiful and far more famous person who compliments Aya.

Aya leaves without telling Frizz her full name, because she is embarrassed by her comparatively low face rank. She then follows Eden into a cave, where she is ambushed by the mag-lev riders, who call themselves the Sly Girls.

The group's leader Lai gives Aya a chance to join them, but to do so she is forced to drop Moggle into an underground lake.

The next day, she visits her famous brother Hiro in New Pretty Town, another kicker who is celebrating reaching the "top thousand" - a list of the thousand most famous people in the city.

Hiro and his friend Ren Machino refuse to believe Aya's tale of the Sly Girls, who are an urban legend in the city, but Ren, who designed Moggle, agrees to help Aya retrieve him.

Aya also happens upon a story about Frizz, discovering that he started a clique based around a brain surgery called Radical Honesty, which enforces honesty and makes a person unable to lie.

That evening, Aya goes mag-lev surfing with the Sly Girls, enjoying the experience in spite of not having a camera to film it with.

During the journey, the girls are surprised when the train stops, and they see inhuman figures loading the train up with a variety of items hidden within a secret underground room.

تاریخ نخستین خوانش روز دهم ماه نوامبر سال 2019میلادی

عنوان: سری زشتها کتاب چهارم: موارد اضافی؛ نویسنده: اسکات وسترفیلد؛ موضوع داستانهای نویسندگان ایالات متحده آمریکا - سده 21م

سری زشتها با کتاب زشت ها، آغاز میشود؛ رمانی علمی تخیلی اثر نویسنده ی آمریکایی، «اسکات وسترفیلد»؛ که در آن «تالی» در آستانه ی شانزده سالگی است و از آن رویداد، بسیار هیجان زده است؛ او تنها در چند هفته ی دیگر، یک عمل جراحی ای خواهد داشت که او را بسیار زیبا و جذاب خواهد کرد؛ و همین زیبایی باعث خواهد شد، که او به بهشتی با فناوریهای برتر برده شود؛ دنیایی که تنها لذت و خوشگذرانی در آن وجود دارد؛ اما دوست «تالی»، به نام «شِی»، درباره ی عمل جراحی مطمئن نیست؛ زمانی که «شِی» فرار میکند، «تالی» با وجهی کاملاً تازه از این دنیای زیبا آشنا میشود که چندان هم زیبا نیست؛ صاحبان قدرت، انتخابی را پیش روی «تالی» میگذارند: او یا باید دوستش را پیدا کند و تحویل دهد، و یا اینکه هیچ وقت زیبا نشود؛ و ...؛ دومین رمان از سری عنوانش «زیبایان» است؛ و سومین رمان عنوان «ویژه ها»؛ است که پایانی تلخ و شیرین برای این سری است

تاریخ بهنگام رسانی 17/12/1399هجری خورشیدی؛ ا. شربیانی
Profile Image for Emma.
2,893 reviews352 followers
March 2, 2018
Extras is the fourth book in Scott Westerfeld's critically acclaimed, New York Times bestselling series (originally it was a trilogy). The first three books Uglies, Pretties, and Specials follow Tally Youngblood, a fifteen-year-old girl living in a futuristic world so dominated by plastic surgery that anyone who looks normal is ugly. Extras is set three years after the events of the trilogy unfold, in a different city, with different main characters. The trilogy, however, sets the framework for everything that happens in Extras so while the book is great on its own it definitely assumes you know the story of the trilogy.

In this new world, where everything is changing, being pretty isn't enough to get by. Now it's fame that matters. The more famous you are, the higher your face rank is. A higher rank means more currency in a world where celebrity is everything.

Everyone is trying to get more attention somehow: "tech-heads" are obsessed with gadgets, "surge monkeys" are hooked on the newest trends in plastic surgery, and "kickers" use feeds (think blogs but techier and cooler because it's a Westerfeld idea) to spread the word on all the gossip and trends worth mentioning. But staying famous is a lot easier than getting famous. Just ask Aya Fuse. Fifteen-year-old Aya has had her own feed for a year, but her rank is still 451,369--so low that she's a definite nobody, someone her city calls an extra.

Aya has a plan to up her rank though. All she needs is a really big story to kick. Aya finds the perfect story when she meets the Sly Girls, a clique pulling crazy tricks in utter obscurity. As Aya follows her story she realizes it's much bigger than one clique: maybe the biggest story since Tally Youngblood changed everything.

Some sequels that bring in all new characters are annoying. Not this one. All of the "new" characters are original and, equally important, likable. The story is also utterly original covering very different territory than the rest of the series. It doesn't pick up right where the trilogy left off, but a lot of questions are answered by the end of this book.

Like the other books in the series, this one moves fast. The story has a lot of action and several twists and surprises (some old characters even turn up). The plot is never overly-confusing though. Westerfeld does a great job of creating (and explaining) the futuristic world he has created in these pages so that it truly comes to life on the page.

At the same time, Extras is a very timely book. In a world where everyone seems to have some kind of website and is trying to be more popular or more famous, it's fascinating to read about a city where everything literally depends on your reputation. Westerfeld raises a lot of interesting questions as Aya deals with the ethics of kicking her new story and tries to decide if honesty really is more important than fame.

You can find this review and more on my blog Miss Print
Profile Image for Kelly.
408 reviews4 followers
January 30, 2009
You know this book started out okay but it quickly went down hill. I was actually annoyed to see Tally in this one and her attitude. I mean this book was not about her so I don't understand why she HAD to be in it. I didn't like how she was portrayed at all. I also quickly got annoyed at Aya.

The Uglies series was my first exposure to Westerfeld and though I really liked Uglies and liked Pretties and pretty much liked Specials I gotta say i'm noticing a pattern with his characters. They all want something superficial and they strive (like with Tally) and are willing to sell out people to get it. Grant it most of the times (not with Extras though) the characters realize that they were wrong in wanting the superficial. But it's annoying. And this book especially showed it's age group that was targeted. It was really not a good book and I would not recommend it at all.
Profile Image for Christina.
209 reviews76 followers
September 27, 2008
Finishing a series always makes me feel like I'm losing a friend. I've spent a good week or so reading these four books, absorbed in the pages and the characters and their lives, and now I just feel lonely.

Extras is set a few years after the huge finale of Specials, or the "mind-rain" as they now call it. It's also a bunch of new characters (although Tally, Shay, David and Fausto make a reappearance which I'm extremely happy about!), a new city, and a spanking new economy known as the "reputation economy". Japan is all about face rank now, a little like a city-sized YouTube, with everyone sporting a hovercam and a feed to broadcast whatever they think will boost their rank. The higher your rank, the more you're able to live in luxury. Fifteen-year-old Aya is ranked around 400,000, making her a total extra, however she uncovers a secret clique, the Sly Girls, which she is certain will bump her to the top. Of course, nothing is ever as simple as that...

Needless to say, although I enjoyed it immensely, Extras isn't as wonderful as its predecessors. Perhaps because we've grown so accustomed to Tally and her friends, that a new narrator instantly puts me a little on edge. Aya irritates me more than Tally ever did because all she ever cares about is being famous.

I adore Frizz (Aya's love interest) though. Some of the funniest, literally laugh-out-loud moments contained him and Tally when they find out about his brain surge, Radical Honesty, which compells him to tell the truth. He almost surpassed my love for Zane, and is probably the reason this book received four stars.

(Speaking of Zane, though... I WISH they'd have said his name. They always trailed off; it was so depressing. I think that was Westerfeld's aim though, so kudos. But still... sigh, Zane <3)

A great ending, but like I first said... now I just feel empty D:
Profile Image for Sam.
8 reviews1 follower
May 24, 2014
Can I give this no stars?

What was that? What was the purpose of this book? Ugh. I kind if hated Aya. She was whiny and no matter what situation came up, no matter how dire, ALL SHE CARED ABOUT WAS IF HER CAMERA WAS CATCHING IT. All she cared about was being a kicker. And what happened to Tally? She just seemed really annoyed the whole time, and not anything like her previous self. The plot, I felt, was also pretty loose. It's just about a fame obsessed girl who finds out about these "freaks" that she thinks are gonna take over the world, when in the end, all they want to do is make sure that the planet doesn't over populate. And I thought the Sly girls were going to be some huge awesome part of the book, but all that happens is they act like they don't know what's going on, then launch Aya into the sky, tell her they knew she was lying, and then tell her that OH YEAH IT'S FIIINNNE. Go on and kick out story! Sure thing! ??? Aya's "relationship" also just kind of happened, and it didn't build up AT ALL. They just suddenly cared about each other. Oh yeah, and then the ending really wrapped things up super well with Tally putting on a dress, going to Nana's party, and sneaking off with David to one of the gardens. (Please note the sarcasm) Why? Why was this book even written? Uuuugghghgh I'm EXTREMELY disappointed. -_- (I hate to be so harsh, but I was WAAYYY nitpicky with this one)

OOOOOOHHHHHH and ALIENS? WHAT. THE. ACTUAL. HECK. When these strange silver creatures were sighted and investigated, I thought they were going to be some crazy plot twist enemy race that were going to change Aya and make her shed her flawed, selfish character. Well, of course, after all this trouble that surfaced around them, all they wanted to do was FREAKING BUILD A ROCKET. What was the point of any of this? Seriously? And to finish it all off, a children's book happy ending was the obvious choice for the end of this FABULOUSLY written book. *sarcasm*. We have the head alien, the sly girls, and tally all at the party, laughing at how well their stupid lives turned out. Yay.
Profile Image for Bridget.
1,130 reviews
February 20, 2012
I can't believe that I am finished with this series. (What to start on next, hmmm.)

This was my least favorite of the series. I really liked it for the first half. I liked Aya Fuse (cool name) and her brother, Hiro, and his friend, Ren. I liked the whole premise of popularity and fame being a commodity for living.

I can't believe that I am saying this, but I didn't really like Tally in this book! Once, she came on the scene, I thought the writing became very sloppy. The whole second half of the story was flat for me.

Westerfeld could have left in me in Aya Fuse's city and in her apartment in Shuffle Mansion with Moggle and I would have been much more satisfied.

I wish that the authors of popular series, would take a little more thought about their story lines before they quickly release their sequels. None of the books that came after "Uglies" was as well thought out and captivating.

Have the audio version, too.
54 reviews3 followers
September 11, 2013
I am just going to pretend that this book doesn't exist! ALIENS????? ALIENS??????? ALIENS?????????? That's a cruel joke. I got so pissed I erased it off my Kindle.It's one of the few books I have abandoned in my life but it was spoiling the thrill and excitement that had built up in me. It's such a disappointing ending to the Uglies series - as if a completely different person came up with it. Even the writing is not at paar with the previous books. The action is abrupt. At one moment the characters are talking and all of a sudden they are on hoverboards which came out of nowhere and running away from ALIENS. ALIENS???????????
"Extras" is the first book I give one star and am not guilt-ridden about it. I appreciate all the efforts and thoughts authors put into their work, all the sleepless nights and all the blocks they have to contend with so seldom do I dare say I disliked a particular book. I feel like I am deliberately undermining and trying to hurt the author this way. There's always something - at least a sentence, that impresses you. But gosh! Aya is such a crybaby! She has no idea why she wants to become popular and when she becomes a prominent "kicker" she begins grumbling and whining. And the love story with Frizz!!! Don't get me started!
Profile Image for Sarah.
Author 2 books9 followers
July 29, 2012
Sorry, Scott. I'm gonna have to throw in the towel this time. I just give up. I loved all of your other books (Peeps, Uglies, Pretties, Specials, the Midnighters series) but I just can't, and I mean CAN'T, understand how this book wormed its way into existence.

Why, Scott? Why?

Why make such a despicable protagonist? You know, I actually felt antagonistic towards Aya, so I don't think the term "protagonist" even applies. I tried to love her, and try I did. But try as I might, I JUST HATED HER GUTS. She's selfish...no, GREEDY, and all the ever wanted was fame. Maybe she did change some of her views in the end, but her attitude throughout the rest of the book ruined it for me.

Why make such inaccurate accounts of Tally? She's not the monster she was made to be in this book, and I have no idea why you would even do something so evil to your own heroine. It's really sad. You build up Tally's character in three books, only to ruin it all in the fourth.

I love your books, Scott, but this one...

This one just doesn't quite make it in my list.
Profile Image for Phoenix2.
804 reviews98 followers
June 23, 2016
Extras is not a Tally Youngblood story, but she appears in it. It takes place in Japan, where the economy is based on popularity. Aya Fuse wants to become famous by "kicking" a story that will attract everyone's attention, just like her brother, Hiro. So she goes undercover, and she stumbles on a very "kickable" story that will make her famous but also set her in danger.
To be honest, I liked Aya better than Tally. Tally was a great heroine and one of my favs in Uglies, but in Extras she is hardly relatable. She is, in fact, kind of unlikable. Aya is sweet and I think and many people can relate with her, as she wants to be famous and be noticed for once. In a society that your status is uploaded on social media, Aya is closer to us than Tally; the first is a teen who struggles to find her own identity through others, the second an older teenager who had her momentum and now is saving the world. The story itself is okay, though the meanings that it gets through, like celebrity status and growing up are better than the actual story. The action isn't that great, and, to be honest, I've got a little bored by it towards the end. Speaking of which, the ending wasn't that good either, though Aya did develop as a character. Lastly the romance. Okay, I have to admit that, although I love Westerfeld's writing and consider him a great author, he just can't write romance. It always feels awkward in the end. I think the best he did was with Tally and Zayn, but Tally and David and Aya and Frizz seemed to luck chemistry, and the romance was underdeveloped.
Other than those two facts, that cost the book two stars, Extras was a great book. I like that the author gives us food for thought through his teen adventure stories and characters that one can easily fall in love with and relate to. So, three out of five
Profile Image for MissBecka Gee.
1,491 reviews596 followers
April 20, 2019
It's finally over!!!
I was surprised that the last book was so much better than the first three in the series.
This was largely due to a entire new cast of characters from the first 3 books and a bit of a plot change as well. The annoying language from the first 3 books is almost non existent in this one. There is new terms they use here but they seem to make more sense and are used a little more sparingly.
Aya is a slightly more likable character than Tally, but only slightly.
All in all I'm glad there are no more books in this series and that I am finally done.
This is not something I will be rereading....EVER!
Profile Image for Mimi 'Pans' Herondale .
187 reviews71 followers
May 31, 2018
Although this wasn't as good as the other books, I really enjoyed it. I was a bit disappointed when it wasn't about Tally Youngblood, but it was a really interesting adventure and I am glad that she showed up later.
Aya was a bit annoying, how she was obsessed with fame and all. But in the end, I ended up liking her. I thought Frizz was really sweet, Hiro is a jerk, and Ren is a pretty nice character.
Profile Image for Trin.
1,780 reviews558 followers
May 28, 2008
The fourth, surprise volume in the Uglies no-longer-a-trilogy. I liked this way more than Specials, the last book in the series (which I actually kind of hated). This novel doesn't center around Tally, the protagonist of the previous three books, but around a new character, Aya Fuse, who's growing up in a post-Pretties world. The Important Teen Topic Westerfeld is tackling this time is fame, not beauty, as following Tally's act of liberation, the world has evolved into one where wealth and social merit are derived purely from notoriety. In other words, Paris Hilton would still be in our faces all the time, dammit.

Like a lot of Westerfeld's work, this book is the most enjoyable if you don't think about it too much. There's a fun, exciting action plot to be had here, but the whole world kind of falls apart if you ponder it for more than five seconds. How is it that Aya's city—which is clearly not the same one as Tally's, as much is made of the language barrier later—was set up in exactly the same way as Tally's? Especially when Uglies made each community seem so wonderfully isolated? And I really don't see the logic of the post-Pretty world, as it's left at the end of Specials, evolving so soon into the world Aya introduces us to. And—but no. Let's go back to nothing thinking about this too hard, okay?

Well, first: I also have to say that I find the idea of all these teenage characters—Aya is fifteen—doing and accomplishing all of this stuff on their own vaguely ridiculous, which officially makes me too old for these books. (Part of my brain can't stop thinking, Where are their PARENTS?) But, uh. If you set all that aside, this really is a fun book! Really! And it provides a slightly more upbeat ending for Tally and David, which I really appreciate. So if you like the other books in this series—or even just the first one—this is a worthy addition. I'm much, much happier having this, instead of Specials, as my final impression of the Uglies world and these characters, and that's worth a lot, I think.
Profile Image for ❤Ninja Bunneh❤.
263 reviews173 followers
March 1, 2014

*******Spoilers ahead******although not many since I don't feel like writing much about this fuckery*******

Welcome to the world of Aya Tally 2.0. Aya has one focus in life which is to become famous. In the new post-Tally world (of Japan), the goal is to become as noticed as you can. Think of it as YouTubers being ranked according to how many hits they get. The higher the hits, the more famous you are. Fame gets you out of being any type of normal productive member of society. You just run around being famous.

This is Aya's undying desire and she will do anything to get it. Including, but not limited to, backstabbing people. Aya infiltrates a secretive girly group, secretly videotaping them, which coincidentally leads to uncovering a huge mysterious mystery conspiracy secret something, which transitions to betraying her new friends and showing the video feed to all of Japan, which causes her to suddenly be chased by the secretive secret alien looking people (who aren't really aliens) and blah blah blah. There's also some insta-love and such stuff.

Who decides to show up? Can you guess? Can you?!?!!

DUN DUN DUN........



This is the moment where my brain turned off completely.

David has two lines in the book just in case you're interested.

Did I mention that you can get a modification and have manga eyes?

Oh, yes.

1 Ninja-Bunneh-Running-Away
Profile Image for Jay G.
1,229 reviews464 followers
July 24, 2020
Want to see more bookish things from me? Check out my Youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfer...

The fourth and final book in the Uglies series!

This was a bit weird as it follows completely different characters for the majority of the book, bringing Tally back in the final act. Aya was an interesting enough character, but I didn't care too much about her and her journey. The Sly Girls were what intrigued me, but they ended up only being a small part in the overall story. The concept of Radical Honesty was probably the most interesting concept to me, but it wasn't explored that much. My favorite character was 100% Moggle, the little spy camera, which is saying a lot...

I definitely prefer the original series to this one, it seemed a bit unnecessary in my opinion.
Profile Image for Izlinda.
587 reviews15 followers
May 2, 2008
Set in the same "Uglies" universe as the previous three books, but set three years after Tally caused the "mind-rain" (when bubbleheads were given the choice to have their lesions repaired so they weren't empty-mindedly happy), this book takes place in Japan.

Aya Fuse's city decides to award resources to people based on their reputation/fame. This is done by everybody being given their own feed (Internet) once of age and their own hovercam. The more often someone's feed is watched, or name is mentioned, the higher their rank, and the more luxuries they are allowed. For example, the higher rank you have, the more luxurious your house can be, or clothes given to you. This is called "face." People can also gain "merits" by doing good deeds, like finish homework on time, working hard, volunteering to babysit, etc.

Aya is pretty desperate to raise her rank so when she finds a secret clique of girls who do tricks with their hoverboards (such as riding the mag-lev train), she decides to join them and secretly spy on them so she can "kick" their story. This leads to a discovery of hidden steel cylinders in a mountain which starts this avalanche of events that inevitably brings in Tally Youngblood and her group of Cutters.

I admire the premise, but I do wish Westerfeld had gone more in depth about the type of fame-obsessed, notice-me society Aya lives in and the negative impact of it. While he does a good job of how relationships can be screwed due to the difference of ranks (called "difference of ambition" in her world, which is a reason people can break up their relationships, much like our "irreconcilable differences") or make things awkward, it doesn't go much further than that.

Also, I found it a little eye-rolling that the heroine does attain a very very high rank in the end, after all, which kind of deflates the purpose of the book, or a purpose. This purpose being a look at the impact of such a society. I mean, seriously, it's like Aya rolls out through perfectly, despite the lies and hardships on the way. And she does "truth-slant" a lot. It doesn't seem like there's enough of a difference shown in her personality by the end of the book, so while she does understand truth-slanting to get ahead for something as shallow and frivolous as fame, she doesn't seem to fully get it.

Tally's inclusion in the book as a peripheral character is an interesting difference from the past three books (two I've read). She seemed harsher and more violent seen from a third-person's viewpoint than when we're inside her head and see her struggles to rewire herself. Kind of brings into mind how we view ourselves is sometimes completely different from how others view us.

Overall a good book, but not really one I would recommend buying, but only checking out.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Cathy.
185 reviews7 followers
December 6, 2010
Okay, this is the very LAST book I am going to read by Scott Westerfeld! I love his dystopic world in the future with all the imaginative people and ways to be. His mysteries and conflicts which send the protagonists, whether they are uglies, pretties, specials, or extras, are quite exciting and keep you reading to see the solution. But the last two books, Specials and Extras, have now put him into the writing genre of Eco-Novelist. His message of it would be better to change your body to a zero gravity atmosphere and send yourself into an endless orbit around the earth, so that the earth can be preserved from any more ravages from humans, IS RIDICULOUS. SIMPLY RIDICULOUS. He just lost me forever on this one. So the Extras are not the Japanese kids, but the Extra-terrestrials who are his real heroes here, trying to save the planet from man. Furthermore, his message reflects very thoroughly an atheist viewpoint that there is no kind Heavenly Father, creator of the earth and more, who placed humans here to till and take care of the earth. Once again, as I've said before, he values the earth more than people, and that is just bass-ackwards. So Mr. Eco-novelist, I'm out! This would be a stupid movie.
15 reviews1 follower
January 30, 2016
In my opinion,the book is disappointing, because in the last 3 books the stories hook the readers attention. In this is book I found that I did not like the main idea, and the main character was a stuck-up 15 year old girl that really got on my nerves. And even though the old characters were in the book, the old main character (Tally Youngblood) was a totally different character! I personally think the series should have ended on The Specials. It was a HUGE struggle just to finish the book and left me wanting to drop the book and never pick it up again.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Peter Meredith.
Author 55 books660 followers
February 3, 2021
Despite that Extras was written for an audience of teenage girls I rather enjoyed it. It was a quick, easy read that kept me interested as it moved splendidly along...until we came nigh of its conclusion and then the floor sort of just dropped out of the story.
*Here there be spoilers*
The story revolves around Aya Fuse, who at the tender age of fifteen is desperate for attention--fame being the only way to become rich in the city of the future's "Reputation Economy."
You heard that right.
I know it sounds stupid, but the city built its economy around two ideas: merits(i.e. money...but don't call it money because that's for primitive morons like us) and fame. Merits are for schlubs who do the grunt work--ditch diggers, teachers, proctologists ((There aren't enough merits in the world for me to be a proctologist...but I digress)) In other words, the help: "Be a dear and clean up that vomit." They are hardly ever mentioned.
If you enjoyed this review you'll probably like my Youtube reviews--be warned, I enjoy some good snark! https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZ6D...
Fame is the other fork in the road, and down this fork everyone adores you and everything that you ever wanted just magically pops out of the wall--I'm not kidding.
Which way does Aya chose? That's a toughie, right? Hardly.
Like anyone else with a touch of ambition and brains she opts for the fame, which begs the question: who would ever unclog her toilet? This is a legitimate question. If doing a crazy stunt--say mag-surfing on a bullet train--would make you rich why would you ever sink your arms up to your elbows in someone else's filth? You wouldn't.
The world would be a "Look At Me" economy and nothing would ever get done. Yet for this book the philosophy is never questioned, and thus works beautifully.
Aya proves my point by immediately doing something dreadfully dangerous in order to Kick a story. It turns out she is a teen journalist and she's hot on a lead--the Sly Girls.
The Sly girls are rebels. They do super-duper crazy stunts, but do so in secret(I guess there are people who do like to work a plunger.) They make no sense. Adrenaline junkies are almost always exhibitions but the story flows along so nicely you don't even notice.
You see, Aya and the Sly Girls discover a race of Aliens who have carved out a mountain near the city. Now is Aya's big chance to be famous because her kicking story is that the aliens are about to destroy the world!
Except they aren't.
*Sigh* Here's where the story falls apart for me. The "aliens" are actually surgically augmented humans who are trying to save the planet from...drum roll please...humans. Ugh!
And they are saving the planet in the most ridiculous fashion. They are stealing metal from abandoned, "Rusty" cities and are then shooting the metal into orbit where they plan to build a space colony. Supposedly this will stop the evil humans from spreading out and overrunning the wild open spaces, despite the fact there aren't that many humans left after the devastating Diego war.
So everyone turns out to be a good guy. There wasn't ever any real danger to our heroes. And we get a dose of enviro-preaching about the evils of mining and over population. That's what I call a sucky ending--though some of you with the high brows might call it anti-climatic. I was hoping for more. Three stars for an engaging writing style and a good beginning.
Profile Image for ✨faith✨trust✨pixiedust✨.
396 reviews365 followers
May 23, 2018
Once you told yourself a story enough times, it was so easy to keep on believing it.

Wow, this was kind of a big disappointment.

Honestly, the first half before Tally showed up was way better. Speshul Tally was Extra Speshul Tally sometimes and it really dragged down the story with her angry sanctimoniousness. Aya, besides that, was quite annoying most of the time, and I feel like very few people actually learned any real lessons and changed in any real, deep way; other than being perhaps a bit less fame-seeking.

I was pleasantly surprised with the lack of a love triangle, though. But that doesn't make up for the overall clicheness and cringiness of the love story that existed.

Man, Scott, I'm counting on you to not mess up Impostors
Profile Image for Darbus.
65 reviews
July 9, 2017
Yich. Not pretty. I didn't like the complication of the language barrier when it wasn't very clear. I hated the main character for her stupidity, pride, and assumptions. Its plot wasn't very engaging, and once they figure out what the Extras are doing, it jumps to the party scene. Tally's character is a lot harsher than before, as well. It was less along the same baseline that made the others good. The others were their titles because Tally was one. Tally was not an Extra. Overall, not worth it for the author to have written it.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Colleen Houck.
Author 37 books8,963 followers
January 25, 2016
I think this novel was so creative. The constant monitoring of your stats reminds me of all the stuff I do with Facebook and Twitter and blogging. It's easy to see how this could happen in the future. What a strange world.
Profile Image for Caryn.
44 reviews23 followers
December 13, 2007
There is an interesting arc to my appreciation of Extras.

I wasn't so sure at first. The girl on the front is obviously not Tally Youngblood, and so I was rather nervous about starting a Westerfeld book that wasn't about Tally Youngblood. But start it I did, and for the first half or so I was in young adult fiction bliss.

Extras does it all right when it comes to futuristic fiction with a bit of a social commentary. Insert Aya Fuse, a fifteen-year-old in post-mind-rain (see Specials) Japan, where they've set up the face-rank system. Your place in society is determined by your face-rank, or how much people talk about you. And poor Aya is stuck at about 400,000.

But there is hope for Aya! If she can find a story to kick, she can catapult herself into top-20,000 in no time. It's just a matter of finding that perfect kickable story.

And it lands in her lap.

The idea of a society where popularity of a feed (read: blog) is more important than how much money you make or what you wear, or what you do for a living is closer on the global horizon than you might think, in a world of YouTube and mySpace.

And of course, this makes Extras CHOCK full of neato futuristic stuff (that's a technical term). Hovercams, mag-lev trains, smart matter (matter than can transform itself at any time), wall screens, eyescreens, skintennae, hoverball rigs.

Keep in mind, this is all that first half of the book I liked.

I wanted to like the last half, really, I did. But it didn't really have an ending. Not a Scott Westerfeld ending, at least.

Other Scott Westerfeld endings had crazy turns, like (spoiler warning) Tally abandoning reason and becoming pretty, even thought it screws with your brain, or like Tally turning Special, even though it screws with your brain, or Tally not fixing her brain after she fixes everyone else's to keep things in order.

No. At the end of Extras, we learn that it was all a big misunderstanding and then go to a party.


Of course, if Scott Westerfeld writes something else to follow this one, I'll read it because I love his books, and I want him to fix this ending.
Profile Image for lauren ❀.
282 reviews418 followers
Shelved as 'dnf'
December 14, 2018
DNF at page 3
I read three pages and realized this is a waste of my time. I have no interest in the series and i can't remember anything from it so what's the point of trying to read this. Not going to waste my time reading this if I'm not interested in it.


I read the original series almost three years ago and never got to this. I thought I might as well read it now even though i remember nothing. at least its a different plot and characters.
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