Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Status Update and Mini Reviews

I've enjoyed reading all of your comments. I've completed 2 of my 5 books (as discussed below).
  • Among the Free by Margaret Peterson Haddix
  • The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood (a re-read)
  • Feed by M. T. Anderson
  • Dies the Fire by S. M. Stirling
  • Z is for Zachariah by Robert C. O'Brien
I thought that The Handmaid's Tale held up very well, after having first read it nearly 20 years ago. I found it utterly compelling, and read it in less than a day (a day when I certainly had other things that I should have been doing). Margaret Atwood is a talented writer, and in The Handmaid's Tale she explores a dark future in which individual rights, especially those of women, shrink down to almost nothing. I found this prospective future chilling, especially in light of recent legal challenges to women's rights. But The Handmaid's Tale is hopeful, too. The main character, nameless except for her demeaning moniker Offred (property of Fred), resists in whatever small ways that she can, and in the end finds glimmers of hope.

Among the Free
is a satisfying finale to the Shadow Children series. This seven-book series is about a future world in which, after a time of famine, third children have been declared illegal by a draconian government. Each book showcases a slightly different, overlapping, set of brave third children, fighting for their own freedom to exist. In this final installment (as is evident from the title), the government is overthrown. But challenges still exist, and the fate of the third children ends up resting in the hand of Luke, the main character from the first book. I teared up a little bit at the end of Among the Free, but in a good way. All of the books in the series are quick, enjoyable reads. I'd like to see the series issued in a single volume, for older readers.

I hope to move on the the other books on my list soon. Please keep up all of your updates. I'm enjoying the wonderful, speculative diversity of this genre.

No comments: