Archive for the ‘dystopia’ Category


Eri cannot believe that her best friend and protector was just collected by the Opprimere soldiers, that Kaynan has become another “tax of human life” for the empire.
As she fights with the soldiers, one of them gapes at her fiery hair and violet eyes, wanting to procure her as well, but that was not the order. His shock was due to the fact that Eri is practically a twin to her mother, a rebel force leader. Why was Eri not taken?
Her stepfather and stepbrother were collected three years prior leaving Kaynan as their provider and friend.  With Kaynan gone, Eri must hunt for meat, taboo for women in the Tolareean village of tree dwellers. She begs for information from the friendly, eldest woman of the village, Clarity. Increased village threats, and a hunger for answers to her mother’s and other family members’ disappearances lead Eri and Leah to hike to Imperii, the empire capitol.  They leave armed with a unique bow, Eri’s eagle necklace, their talents, and light camping gear.
Their quest takes them to a submerged Washington, D.C., a gigantic gulf, destruction of a large section of the Midwest, and southern Utah. An encounter with soldiers solidifies that going back home will never happen. The next city must be crossed even though there are obvious dangers and clever technology, which adds to the enjoyment of the read.
When a civilization falls changes invariably happen.  This Disaster does create a decline in language and an increase in superstitions outside of the privileged cities and classes.  Doctors are called “medicine men” for instance, and the taboos subjugate women. It also is the mother of inventions to help deal with new dangers and new needs.
Eridale was a typical teenage girl who had conflicts with her mother.  In this case it was exacerbated by her mother’s disappearance. Eri suffered from simplistic grudges and teen self-righteousness.  The conflict between an almost grown woman and her mother, who wants to parent a child who has been independent for years, is a real phenomenon.
 I liked Melanie’s word choices, of which “my body halts,” “tax of human life,” and “entrenches my resolution” are a few.
Not being familiar with either, I could feel her familiarity with archery and land formations of the southern Utah national parks, very clever natural fortresses.The map was intriguing and I hope that the final graphic can enlarge well in order to read the lettering clearly.
Dystopian novels give the writer full creative rein, and Melanie has chomped down on the bit to create strong female protagonists and a unique story among the forest of dystopian novels.  I look forward to the sequel; and by all mean, don’t let her shoot!
I volunteered to review an advanced reader’s copy of Storm Child.  Joan Enders


Melanie is an author, designer, photographer, and flight attendant all rolled into one. She has told stories all her life and finds her passion in sharing the plots that spin through her head. She now lives in Portland, Oregon, with her two dachshund-chihuahua dogs. She loves the beauty of the Pacific Northwest that feeds her imagination.

When no one is listening, Melanie loves to belt Broadway songs in her living room and car. Someday she hopes to be on a flight where someone is reading her book.
Connect with the Melanie here:
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To view the blog schedule  for STORM CHILD and follow this tour visit the Official Event Page: 

Love is a disease.
It must be eradicated by the time you are eighteen.
Forbidden books are listed on
A life mate who is compatible with you will be chosen for you.
Never interact with the opposite sex.
Enjoy a life without pain.

It is a future spawned by “nanny mentality.” Take care of people so well that they are never hurt or damaged. But we know the other side of that blade…

Will Lena receive the cure? Will she even pass the evaluation? Will she forget the young man who has maneuvered into her life?

ENDERS’ Rating: *****

Lauren’s Website

Adam’s mother, Jem, could see the exact date of someone’s death by looking into their eyes. Adam has the sight also, but he has to live with the date and their death. He meets an extraordinary girl, Sarah, in an art class as he models for her sketch. In her eyes he sees a distance death filled with love and peace. It is so different from his usual tormented visions that he is at first mesmerized by her, then quickly loves her. Sarah is carrying a baby from repeated sexual abuse and pushes him away. But there are bigger problems on Adam’s mind: a huge amount of people have a death date of New Year’s Day, just a few weeks away. All kinds of mayhem arises from his attempts to save the city, his nan, Sarah and her “old soul”
baby girl. Prepare yourselves for nasty destruction and a peek at a disturbing “big brother” society that forgets the individual in the quest of becoming the
ultimate nanny society, a society that also ignores what it does not want to see. Excellent, better than the first novel, with lots of hope because of love and compassion shown in the main characters. A sequel called Infinity follows.

ENDERS’ Rating: ****

Rachel’s Website

Prepare to re-enter the bizarre worlds of Incarceron and the Outside once again! Attia is a magic show plant for the crazy magician Rix as they travel through the bowels of Incarceron trying to make contact with Finn, who Kiero is sure abandoned his oath brother for a life of luxury in the Realm. Travel with Rix is dangerous and the two young people strike out on their own yet are imprisoned by a settlement of women. Meanwhile, Finn is desperate to save his friends by rebuilding the portal to Incarceron. His right to the crown is challenged by a possible impostor and Claudia is torn between Finn and her mentor, Jared. The Realm is flickering toward extinction as a last stand between Finn, Claudia and Jared against the queen and her forces crescendos at the warden’s home. If that isn’t enough, Incarceron is trying to free itself from itself. Confused? Crazy enough, it all makes sense in this amazing fantasy/science fiction/dystopia world. I have not read Incarceron, but I understood and was captivated by the entire story.

ENDERS’ Rating: *****

Catherine Fisher’s website

Annah survives alone against the Dark City that is lawless and becoming overrun with the Unconsecrated that are returning in swarms. She has been waiting for Elias to return from his two-year stint with the Recruiters. She is finally going to strike out on her own, a dangerous decision. Elias does come back but with a surprise for Annah, her beautiful twin sister that she and Elias deserted in the Forest of Hands and Teeth when she, Abigail, refused to go any further. Catcher, a new person who can walk among the Unconsecrated, enters their lives, and everything changes. Will they survive the onslaught of the hoards? Will they survive the ruthless Recruiters? I felt the stress of their situation and the ever-present daily horror and drudge of doing away with the Mulos. I loved this third “Forest of Hands and Teeth” novel with its different voice. It already has a waiting list at my school.

ENDERS’ Rating: *****

Carrie’s Website

The Scorch Trials by John Dashner

Posted: December 27, 2010 in dystopia, survival

This is the sequel to The Maze Runner, so will be an unintentional spoiler if you do not read it first.

In The Scorch Trials the survivors of the Maze, relishing their rescue, discover after their first night in the dorm that Cranks are just outside trying to attack them, their rescuers have been murdered and they are locked up without food. So much for being “saved.”

It starts again. Only this time they are infected with the Flare that turns humans into living zombies before their death. The new test is to make it through The Scorch (earth’s most devastated ring of destruction) in two weeks and to receive the cure. There’s motivation!

The boys discover that there have been two maze groups, with similar experiences and outcomes, except Group B is all girls who are eager to capture and kill Thomas. The tension never lets up in The Scorch Trials, so watch The Sound of Music or Thoroughly Modern Millie before and after reading it.

Oh, book three is coming.

ENDERS’ Rating: ***

Dashner’s Blog

Didn’t want to like this book. Dystopia novels are going the path of fallen angels and vampire books for my attention span: give me something fresh or pack it up!

Green is the only survivor in her family after the horrendous attack of the Horde. The young man she loves is missing. She lives in a solitary world of gardening, healing and adoring herself with green tendril tattoos. Alice employs the fool myth, as Green visits three “witches” and receives powers through their stories to travel to the center of the Horde to try to heal the land and their destroyed city. I loved this story of survival after cataclysmic destruction, and was glad to see that one of my favorite author, David Levithan, was the editor.

ENDERS’ Rating: ****

Alice Hoffman’s Website

I love this series about a far-too-full moon and its effects on the world. When Susan visited my school years ago she told students that she loved creating “what if” situations. She has outdone herself with this excellent series.

A year has passed since the moon has tilted into a closer orbit around the earth affecting weather, power, and food production. Miranda and her brothers spend their days fishing and searching for food, fuel and anything else they can scavenge. Matt gets married. Her father, with his new wife and child, show up to complicate the situation more, along with three new strangers, Alex, Julie and Charlie. Alex wants to enter a monastery, but his feelings for Miranda are getting in the way. Another horrific disaster surfaces.

(Spoiler coming! STOP reading if you can). As the story ends, Miranda, who has fallen in love with Alex, is ending her diary and ready to start the trip to a safe city for which Alex has a ticket. My vote is for a fourth book, which student reviewers believe will happen, and are looking forward to reading. Susan never disappoints readers who expect the unexpected from her.

ENDERS’ Rating: *****

Susan’ Blog

What book had fans lining up around a block at Powell’s in PDX in the early morning of its release? You guessed it! Mockingjay. I cheated and bought the audiobook before the book released, and I must say, it was riveting.

For those of you thinking of reading The Hunger Games, nominated for the 2011 Evergreen Award, Mockingjay is the dramatic conclusion of the annual “games” that keep the districts of the former United States under the thumb of “the capitol.” A boy and a girl are chosen from each of the thirteen districts to compete to the death with only one survivor. With amazing technologies and with the capitol crowd watching the action with bated breath, THG competition provides the excitement of a District Thirteen girl named Katniss whose skills and logic keep her and her ally alive the longest. But who wins?

I am not going to be the spoiler for those who have not read any of the trilogy. But if my library shows any trends, all 10 copies of The Hunger Games, all 4 copies each of Catching Fire and Mockingjay are checked out with a huge “hold” queue. It is worth the read, or the listening. One tease: no one likes a likable character to die.

ENDERS’ Rating: *****

Suxanne’s Website

Fever Crumb, an orphan in futuristic England is raised by an engineer in a think tank called, appropriately, the Order of Engineers, tisking emotions. But her adoptive father loans her out to assist an archaeologist, Kit Solent on a top-secret mission. Fever is well suited to assist, as she has memories that she cannot explain about hidden vaults of the city. Well, a new face with one blue and one brown eye sets off hysteria in London that Fever is a dreaded Scriven, probably a front runner to an invasion. In their mob mind set, they successful destroy the home base of the Order of Engineers, kill Solent leaving his children orphans, and torch London.

Unknown to the Londoners Fever’s mysterious Scriven mother has joined forces with the Movement and is their head technomancer, assisting their leader Quercus. The Movement uses the first power-hungry moving city, one thousand years before the Mortal Quartet novels, to intimidate and overtake London. In a horrific “modification” Solent is constructed into a stalker, a bionic fighting machine based on the remains of his body. The most touching scene of the entire book centers around this stalker. Reeve has created another dystopia that has a riveting storyline. More is promised about Fever in at least one sequel.

Say “steampuck” three times!

ENDERS’ Rating: *****

Philip’s Blog (An explanation of the photo is in his biography. He is the one on the right).