Author: Andrea K. Höst
Publication Date: March 20th 2011
Publisher Andrea K. Hösth
Blurb (GR): On her last day of high school, Cassandra Devlin walked out of exams and into a forest. Surrounded by the wrong sort of trees, and animals never featured in any nature documentary, Cass is only sure of one thing: alone, she will be lucky to survive.
The sprawl of abandoned blockish buildings Cass discovers offers her only more puzzles. Where are the people? What is the intoxicating mist which drifts off the buildings in the moonlight? And why does she feel like she's being watched?
Increasingly unnerved, Cass is overjoyed at the arrival of the formidable Setari. Whisked to a world as technologically advanced as the first was primitive, where nanotech computers are grown inside people's skulls, and few have any interest in venturing outside the enormous whitestone cities, Cass finds herself processed as a 'stray', a refugee displaced by the gates torn between worlds. Struggling with an unfamiliar language and culture, she must adapt to virtual classrooms, friends who can teleport, and the ingrained attitude that strays are backward and slow.
Can Cass ever find her way home? And after the people of her new world discover her unexpected value, will they be willing to let her leave?
How useful would you be in an apocalyptic or post-apocalyptic situation? My best friend and I had a discussion about this for a while the other day. (Well, to be honest I have this discussion all the time.) While we obviously tally people’s skills up in the positives column, we were in agreement that two of the biggest advantages a person can have is their ability to just go with the flow and their tendency not whine or complain about things. The reason I bring this up is because the first third or fourth of this book is about a teenage girl, Cass Devlin, walking home from school and suddenly finding herself in a completely foreign place. As she walks around, the thinks about what is going on in a very logical manner. She thinks about where the sun is located, how long the days are, what kinds of wildlife is around, what she might be able to eat, how to actually make things from raw materials. Gosh, thanks for that Andrea K. Höst, because my reading partner and I were so excited to read about a character who actually thought about all the things a person should be thinking if they are somewhere they have never been before. I’ve read several books since I finished this one (as has my reading partner) and we’ve repeatedly said “Ugh, Cass Devlin would never do something like this.” I also enjoyed her sense of humor about her entire situation and the new society she finds herself a part of.
The interesting thing about this book, and this could really be a positive or negative depending on the reader, was how it was very in-depth setup for the rest of the series. What this book needs is a kickass editor to contain the awesome. Here is a very scientific graph I’ve made for the occasion:
Surprisingly, there is no concentration on romance, at least not in this installment of the series. There are
a few hints and several possibilities but it was nice not to have that weighing down the plot. Instead of Cass wondering about what X or Y dude thinks of her, she actually wonders about how everything in the world works, how she might get home, and the ramifications of her choices. Crazy!
To the author, if you are reading this at any point (which you might be!), please write a survivalist or post-apoc novel! I will read it and love it. Until then, I'll continue with this series and enjoy those ones.
I never would’ve found this book without Goodreads. My pal Chichipio has an aversion to buying books that cost more than $5. Sure, I often yank his chain about this habit but this is it, Gonza, your REVENGE. I really loved this book, so thank you. (be sure to check out his review!)