by: Neal Shusterman
caution: MAJOR spoilers ahead
THAT WAS AWESOME! everything I was hoping for and more in a sequel. Neal Shusterman has done it again (and by 'it' I mean, written a bone-chilling and yet completely amazing and meaningful book).
and I'm not going to review this like I usually do, because there are just too many characters I need to address...
Connor: I love how much he has grown. It's mentioned in the book at least once, but this kid went from being a easily angered 'problem child' to a responsible and brave hero who is in charge of hundreds of other kids. I can't wait to see what becomes of him and Lev in the third book \ trying to change the world and all that (they are also referred to as "a martyr and a patron saint", which is strangely true)
Lev: I was afraid at the beginning that he was just going to be left alone to live his life, because he simply wasn't mentioned. But, boy, was I wrong. I'm happy that a tithe rescuing operation was set up, but that got creepily close to (scratch that: it was) Lev worship (or Leviathan..). I'm also happy that he decided to go with Miracolina. They had better end up together, maybe not as a couple, but at least friends (so basically I mean that they need to find each other again and literally be together, like in the same place.)
Pastor Dan: That was easily my least favorite scene of the book. because:
1. That girl scout clapper was completely disturbing...
2. Pastor Dan got blown up... He was one of my favorite characters, but I understand the neccesity for Lev to go out on his own.
Miracolina: I loved her. She was really interesting to read because of how cold and semi-robotic she was at first and how she slowly (and I mean sloooooooooowwwwwwwwwlllllllyyyyyyy) let Lev in. This led to one of my favorite quotes of the book:
"Either things happen for a reason or they happen for no reason at all. Either one's life is a thread in a glorious tapestry or humanity is just a hopelessly tangled knot. Miracolina has always believed in the tapestry, and now she feels blessed to have had a glimpse of its smallest corner,"
Now she just needs to find Lev again.
and speaking of finding people...
Risa: I love her! she cracked me up more than once:
"Risa immediately decides that anyone who uses the word 'hullabaloo' cannot be her friend"
And even while she was doing those public announcements I knew it had to be in an effort to protect everyone. And it was so frustrating how angry she was with herself, because she knew it was for the best cause but she still hated herself. I literally did a fist pump when she finally made her announcement on that talk show.
"I am not, nor have I never been, nor will I ever be in favor of unwinding"
which leads us to...Cam (or camus camprix): So many mixed emotions. I see why it would be hard to understand that he was a real human being with emotions if you just met him. But it was different for the reader because before we even knew who he was we were inside his head, feeling what he was feeling, seeing what he was seeing. So while I wanted Risa to see him as a real person (and while I completely hate Proactive Citizenry) I knew that she couldn't feel his emotions like I did.
Roberta: I really don't like her. let's leave it at that.
Starkey (or as I thought of him, a new Roland with a cause): I kept hoping he would do something good with the power he was collecting, but I knew that wouldn't happen. But, I think the whole stork angle was interesting. (and it just proves how thorough of a world Shusterman has built) I really hope something bad happens to him, and I feel awful for all of those poor kids who got taken away from Connor (a genuine and brave leader) and now are under the full control of Starkey (an awful and selfish leader who didn't care all that much that 40 kids died in a plane crash on his watch...)
Trace: awwwwwwwwwww. *teardropI hated that he died, and even more I hated how he died. I hated that he died at the hands of Starkey, but I admired his bravery to the very last moment.
Karla: I LOVED HER! and I so appreciate everything she stood for and her full belief in extraordinary/ordinary people.
and I have one last person (and arguably the most important to be discussed in this review)
Neal Shusterman: That man is a genius. He has a knack for leading you right up to a moral dilemma and then letting you make up your own mind about it without even hinting at his own feelings toward it. I also have this image of him with a literal, written down list of every single political issue and moral dilemma he can think of and I can see him thinking to himself "okay Neal, what is the most disturbing way to address all of these in one book series...". And of course as he writes the books he slowly crosses them off one by one. But, he should be more well-known with a gift like his.
Okay, I'm going to go eagerly wait for the third book (I hope it's not another 5 years away....)Hurry Neal!
“The measure of a man is not how much he suffers in the test, but how he comes out at the end.”
“Anger is only our friend when we know its caliber and how to aim it.”
“The sad truth about humanity, Risa was quick to realize, is that people believe what they're told. Maybe not the first time, but by the hundredth time, the craziest of ideas just becomes a given.”
“Either things happen for a reason, or they happen for no reason at all. Either one's life is a thread in a glorious tapestry or humanity is just a hopelessly tangled knot.”
“They signed the unwind order just to spite each other,but laugh,laugh,laugh,Hayden, because if you ever stop laughing,it might just tear you apart worse than a Chop Shop.”
“Tranq'd by your own gun,"Lev says."How pathetic.” (*and a fist-pump for THE IRONY)
“History is written by the victors--and when there is no victors, it all winds up in the corporate shredders.”