Sunday, August 5, 2012

No Safety In Numbers by Dayna Lorentz

Publisher: Penguin

Series: No Safety in Numbers (bk. 1)

Genera: Dystopian Sci-fi

Subjects: disease, quarantine, survival, malls

Length: 263 pgs.

HC/PB: Hardcover

Summary/ product description: “Life As We Knew It meets Lord of the Flies in a mall that looks just like yours
A biological bomb has just been discovered in the air ducts of a busy suburban mall. At first nobody knows if it's even life threatening, but then the entire complex is quarantined, people start getting sick, supplies start running low, and there's no way out. Among the hundreds of trapped shoppers are four teens.
These four different narrators, each with their own stories, must cope in unique, surprising styles, changing in ways they wouldn't have predicted, trying to find solace, safety, and escape at a time when the adults are behaving badly.
This is a gripping look at people and how they can--and must--change under the most dire of circumstances.
And not always for the better.”

My Rating: êêêê

My Review: Despite the awful cover, and the fact that it’s more of a thriller than a sci-fi, I really enjoyed this book. Similar to Monument 14, except set in our time rather than a few decades in the future, this book creates a strange quarantined society of mall workers and walker, taking place over a week. It’s the first book in a series, surprisingly. I was sure it was going to be a stand-alone, but the “End of Book One” said otherwise. The biological bomb that made people sick was scary realistic, and I just hope that real terrorist never get the idea to do this for real. This book felt like some thriller/horror movies I’ve seen. Contagion, Quarantine, but no zombies.

The four characters that the story revolves around (or 5, if you count the Senator) the author doesn’t get too deep into. I felt like the story could have easily been from Shay perspective only, but since it was all in 3rd person limited anyways, it doesn’t matter. I felt we learned the most about Shay. She’s Indian and has henna tattoos, a little sister and a grandma in the mall with her. Lexi is a gamer/computer genius and the senator’s daughter. Ryan plays football and like to rock climb. Marco works as a busboy and is part Latino.

The setting is awesome. Of all the places to be trapped, the mall has to be the coolest. People don’t stop buying stuff. If they don’t pay, they’re shop-lifting. It would be better if they got stuff for free. It would have been more interesting if it really was like Lord of the Flies or the Gone novels and only kids and teens were trapped in the mall, but since it’s a quarantine, I guess it’s okay. But all those stores you get to stay in? Wow. I’d hang out in Barnes & Noble (not in this book) or the movie theater.

Cover Art Review: Not very thrilling. Looks like crumpled paper. Not the kind of book I would buy based off the cover. Maybe guys would like it. The inner cover’s okay.

~Haley G

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