Hello everyone! I have been super behind on my blog posts. It is that time of the semester when the perfect storm hits and everything, school life, personal life, and work life all hit at once. Hope you had a great week/month…I have been super checked out (sorry!). I have continued to read tween books like a fiend and several have been great, others are not great but would do well with tweens and others are simply the worst. I am going to feature a new tween series, Horizon, which has potential to really take off with the tween community. The first book is written by Scott Westerfeld and the second is set to be written by Jennifer A. Nielson. Scholastic is creating a website/web component to this series, similar to that of 39 Clues, where readers can play through the plot with their own avatar online. This could either go really well, or the tweens will completely reject it for being lame. High risk, hopefully high reward.
Horizon by Scott Westerfeld
When a plane crash lands on its trip across America to Japan several young survivors must figure out how to rescue themselves. Several of the crash survivors were part of a group who developed a robot, which was competing in a global challenge. Yoshi and several others are flying back to Japan. Yoshi is not looking forward to the reunion waiting at home because he is in super trouble for taking a katana from Japan to American (whoops). This group is filled out with the oldest, Caleb, who assumes that he is in charge, though everyone looks toward level-headed Molly, the leader of the robotics group. The young teens uncover new technology, which turns off gravity, but attracts a new dangerous species of birds. The teens have no adults to rely on and no ability to communicate with the outside world, they must work together to find food, shelter, protection from the flora and fauna, as well as a way home.
This book does get gritty and doesn’t shy away from from the bloody action sequences one would expect. I did not have high expectations for this novel because I wasn’t a fan of Westerfeld’s Pretties series, but this book was awesome. It provided several multicultural characters, with the leader of the group, Molly, being African American. It was interesting and the story was constantly in motion. This felt like The Maze Runner that was developed for a younger audience.