Thursday, January 20, 2011

XVI by Julia Karr + Giveaway!

XVI by Julia Karr
published January 2011 by Penguin
272 pages (paperback), YA
Debut Author Challenge ; YA Reading Challenge

Nina is fifteen, going on sexteen. In 22nd century Chicago, for a girl, turning 16 means getting tattooed with XVI on her wrist, broadcasting to the world that this gal's ready for sex, anywhere anytime from anyone. They all want it anyway, right? Well, Nina doesn't. She's not completely brainwashed by the Media. She wants to be a Creative, go to art school, and have a life. But then her life spins out of control, with her family in danger and her views of the world shattered, and what begins as a simple dystopia quickly turns into a murder mystery.

I was initially attracted to this book because of the setting - I'd love to know what Chicago looks like in 2150 in someone else's imagination. I was disappointed that it didn't seem so different from today. I understand that's plausible, I suppose, but I wanted a little more fancy. The technology jargon is different, but the devices are familiar. And the society? Well, we only get glimpses into the government, but what is made very clear is that the Media runs the show.

Nina and her friends have designated themselves private investigators and protectors (of each other). It's not safe to talk unless in a Dead Zone (can you hear me now?), and they have much to puzzle through. What if the government is lying to them? What if Nina's father is still alive? What if embracing life as a sexteen isn't all that it's advertised to be? If I'm not making sense, good. There's not much explanation I could give without retelling the story. If you're intrigued, give it a whirl. It should be a quick read.

For me, I read this book at the wrong time. I forced it, and I shouldn't have. I may have liked it better had I not just read The Sky is Everywhere. But still three purple crayons for an interesting story.

Reviewed elsewhere:
Forever Young Adult ; Fiktshun

I bought this book with the intent of passing it on to one lucky winner. All you have to do is fill out the form! Contest ends Monday, January 24, 2011. Open to U.S. only.



Jan von Harz said...

I just picked this book up and am anxious to read it as I love dystopian novels and have read a few review that found it to be a good read. Sorry you didn't like it.

Mrs. DeRaps said...

Awesome giveaway! I'd love to own a copy of this book! Thanks.

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