The Unidentified, Rae Mariz
The Game, an alternative education system where students learn in a converted mall, playing fun park style games to learn maths, following challenges to gain points and go up levels. Where the sponsors are always watching them, doing market research on what and who is cool or different. Katey/Kid (@kidzero) is fairly happy as she is, she has a few close friends who she records music with and she does quite well in the challenges. She isn’t as connected with the Game as a lot of other players, but it doesn’t really bother her. Until a group calling themselves the “Unidentified” start trying to make a point against the Game. Kid starts to look into their demonstrations and finds herself coming to the attention of the sponsors – and learning that who she is and what she does is something that can be used by other people. Individuality vs being in the crowd, control vs freedom.
I liked this book, it’s actually not far off what happens today and how we share information, and I didn’t guess the ending before it got there. Recommended if you like Scott Westerfeld (particularly So Yesterday) or Candor by Pam Bachorz.
Divergent, Veronica Roth
In Beatrice’s world people are divided up into five factions. People decide if they are brave, selfless, intelligent, honest or peaceful and then dedicate their lives to these ideals. Beatrice grew up in the abnegation faction dedicating her life to helping others. On her birthday, she has the choice – to stay with her family in the abnegation faction, or choose to spend the rest of her life in a different one. At school they have a test that will indicate where they are best suited – everyone should fit easily into one, but Beatrice doesn’t. Something that seems like a small thing, but is regarded as dangerous. It’s called being divergent, and means that whichever faction she chooses, she needs to hide the fact that she doesn’t fit perfectly into the society, while she discovers that the society itself may also not be as perfect as it’s meant to be.
Wonderful book, I loved the details in everything about the world and I really want the next book to come out soon! Alternative world, lots of action – if you liked the Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins then you’ll probably like this as well.