Here is another book that just feels real. These seem so rare nowadays, when every little thing from books and stories to sports and bottled water is jacked up on hype and extreme-isms. I find real refreshing.
Cassie was there, but it’s 11-year-old Bree’s story about how she’s strangely attracted to an older friend (Cassie) who may be cunning, mean, and manipulative, but who might also be kind and generous. It’s hard to tell.
I love how Cassie is drawn. Very authentic. I knew a Cassie. She was my friend, too, and she sometimes did things I didn’t like. Sometimes I stood up to her (and got in trouble when she cried to our gym teacher, Mrs. Scroggins), and sometimes I followed her lead and regretted it (that be-mean-to-Sherri day was just plain stupid, and I deserved Sherri’s response). Still, at other times, she was a good friend.
Bree’s responses to Cassie felt very real and very familiar.
Critique partner, Dale, recommended this. She’s big on fantasy. I’m not. But I enjoyed the first book of this series very much. First of all, the fantasy part is that the kids are genetically re-engineered. I guess that might make these science fiction, not fantasy, but whatever. What can I say? Genetics interests me. I enjoy imagining strange genetic combinations.
But what I like best about this book is Max’s voice. She’s obviously contemporary, but not so hip that she seems alien to me. She sounds totally real, even in the face of what is clearly fantasy.
Now, I am listening to this, so maybe more credit should go to the reader than the author, but my gut says they are both deserving. Whether or not I like the rest of the books in the series remains to be seen, but I enjoyed this first one.