Tag Archives: Dystopian

Insurgent Release Day: Veronica Roth in NYC!

24 May

Photobucket

One of my favorite YA authors, Veronica Roth *finally* made it to NYC earlier this month to promote the release of her new book Insurgent. Book 2 in the Divergent trilogy. If you’ve been living under a rock, and somehow haven’t ready Divergent yet— go buy it asap! It is one of the best, most absorbing dystopian novels I’ve ever read. It *gasp* may even be better than The Hunger Games!

It’s hard to really review Insurgent without spoiling major plot elements from both it, and its predecessor. But suffice to say, it was even better than book 1. Veronica Roth really understands the motivations and psychology behind ALL of her characters, something I find some authors to really struggle with. Every single person in her books if a fully fleshed-out, realistic character. And she also gave the reasonings and rationale behind the basis for every faction.

Photobucket

Quite a few people turned out for the release day signing, at Barnes and Noble Tribeca. Veronica read from one of the earlier scenes in Insurgent, then did a short Q&A with the audience before beginning the signing.

Photobucket
Getting excited about an audience question

Photobucket
About to sign

Photobucket
Veronica meeting her fans!

If you get a chance to catch Veronica on her tour–take it! I hear she may be at BEA 2012 too. Her interaction with the audience was candid, informative, and brutally honest about all things Tris, Divergent, and even a little about her personal struggles as an author, and human being.

I gave Insurgent 5/5 STARS. And Veronica 5 stars as well. 😉

Review: Enclave by Ann Aguirre

19 Apr

Enclave

New York City has been decimated by war and plague, and most of civilization has migrated to underground enclaves, where life expectancy is no more than the early 20’s. When Deuce turns 15, she takes on her role as a Huntress, and is paired with Fade, a teenage Hunter who lived Topside as a young boy. When she and Fade discover that the neighboring enclave has been decimated by the tunnel monsters—or Freaks—who seem to be growing more organized, the elders refuse to listen to warnings. And when Deuce and Fade are exiled from the enclave, the girl born in darkness must survive in daylight, in the ruins of a city whose population has dwindled to a few dangerous gangs. As the two are guided by Fade’s long-ago memories, they face dangers, and feelings, unlike any they’ve ever known.

Enclave is one of the more frightening YA dystopian novels I’ve read. Like the upcoming Blood Red Road, it presents a stark view of a future world where everyday is a battle to survive.

Raised underground, and trained to be a huntress her whole life, Deuce is a nearly fearless warrior. Her life changes the day she comes of age, is given her new name, and paired up with the quiet but vicious hunter Fade. Deuce and Fade fall into an easy partnership, based on respect of each other’s fighting abilities. After encountering freaks ( absolutely terrifying zombie-like beings who definitely gave me nightmares) who have appeared to genetically evolved, they know their lives must change.

Once they realize they both are questioning the enclave’s elders, who have ignored their warnings of a new breed of freaks, a friendship develops. Together, after discovering more truths about their underground world, they’re banished topside, and leave in search of a better life.

Enclave is unique in that it shows a true breakdown of society as we know it, where humans band together and live the most basic lives, only concerned with eating, breathing, and breeding.

The story might have had a more profound impact on me since I live in New York City, and see how eerily plausible it would be for society to crumble. If the city was mostly evacuated, those that remained could easily begin living in the subway system, or fall into roaming gangs who terrorize what’s left of Manhattan.

Really the scariest thing about this book is how easily this horrible life could all become a reality. The plagues, starvation, in-fighting, and lack of information…maybe not the cannibalistic freaks, but then again, who knows what 100 years of inbreeding and starvation could do to the human race.

I’d recommend Enclave to anyone in search of a fast, enthralling read showing the grittier and gorier side of post-apocalyptic life. Aguirre never shies away from showing the nastier side of survival, but still lets her characters carry a hope in their hearts that there is indeed a better place out there in the world.

Deuce and Fade aren’t perfect, but they are refreshingly real, and incredibly strong characters both physically and mentally. Odds are, that like me, you’ll be left anxious for the second installment of their story.

4/5 Stars

Enclave the first book of the Razorland trilogy, is available now from Feiwel and Friends.

Meeting Author Elana Johnson

15 Apr

Possession by Elana Johnson

Yesterday, along with some fellow book bloggers, I had the pleasure of having lunch with visiting author Elana Johnson, and the ladies of Simon & Schuster’s marketing department. We met in midtown Manhattan at Bill’s Bar & Burger for lunch, and to chat about Elana’s upcoming dystopian YA novel, Possession
.

Possession has been on my Goodreads TBR list for ages, so I was totally excited to meet Elana and learn more about her book. The seven of us sampled milkshakes and appetizers (the toasted marshmallow milkshake is to die for! I’m not even a big milkshake fan, but I want another asap!) while we discussed Possession, Elana’s writing habits, upcoming events like BEA, and some of our favorite 2011 reads.

Everyone was so nice, and I’m so happy I was able to catch Elana while she was in town:
Eland Johnson
Elana and I with Possession!

Elana Johnson 2
Damaris from Good Choice Reading,  Me, Elana, and JL from An Avid Reader’s Musings.

When I left, I passed by ice skaters at Rockefeller Center. It was 60 degrees yesterday!
April Skaters!

We had talked about The Strand at lunch too, so that led to me stopping by once again on my way home.
Strand

I’m reading Possession
now, and am already totally sucked in to Vi’s world after just a few pages! Hopefully I’ll have a review up sometime next week. : )

Thanks again to Simon & Schuster and Elana for the amazing lunch, and Possession ARC!