March 18, 2014

Reviewing... [60] The Disappeared

The Wilderness, the sequel to this, came out on Thursday so... if you see it in the bookshelves, you may want to grab it & this one. What did I think of The Disappeared?

Reviewing... [60]

Source: Won as part of last year's British Book Challenge.
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Author: C.J. Harper
Recommended For: Those who want a YA series which is easy to read, doesn't end in cliffhangers but is still compelling.

...don't we all want a book like that?
Well, the concept's kooky... Seriously, when I read that there were teachers in cages I was a bit sceptical and surprised. Sure, it's a dystopia and anything can happen but it doesn't mean anything should. I know this isn't that far on the insane spectrum but it's still strange. But, it makes sense now to some extent. It's the literal teachers being detached from the students. So detached in fact that, cages aside, they allow fights to happen after dinner (that's when they don't care), they punish the children with electric shocks, they don't even give the students the most basic necessities... But, what could you expect? These are the kids who don't have futures, or the very least, or so the system says. Everyone has some future, but is trapped to quite an extreme extent in that 'future'.
It's really a horrifying idea, and is like an Orwellian concept suitable for pre-teens, mostly. I wouldn't give it to primary school kids but stock the high school library shelves with this. It's a great read, really dark and recognizably has that British streak- or what we like to think is mainly from Brit's pens- of grit, satire, lack of comfortableness and a layer of being plain, and yet... almost out of this world. That's what happens when it's dystopia.
It can't have those britishisms but it's got that feel. It was brave of Harper to have this as her debut, a dystopia truly must be hard to create... no? But the deceptive storytelling is the spark which gave this book the life it needs and allowed everything else to function. 
Another thing was absolutely unsound was how the gingers were the best. I love it. It seems unusual, doesn't it? But when you think about it, gingers often aren't top of the game in life, but now we are! That's terrific. I'm having a proud ginger moment...

I get the notion Jackson was written, then the plot & then the author figured out how Jackson could change with the plot. Sorry for the over analysing but how it just happens and the fact it's not that subtle, really... I love the plot though & how Jackson's opinions have to unravel first to become a proper tapestry. It's just awesome (really, awe). 
I've read a few times books which are dystopia and communication has been altered & the way characters then speak can really be disjointed but in The Disappeared, for once, I wasn't irked at all by it. It worked and, hallelujah, they started to learn how to speak like Jackson. Frankly, the Academy's way of speaking does get the point across but it's the beauty of language most of us want. So, The Disappeared has both in this incredible blend. Seeing the development in something as simple as speech really allows a bond between reader and characters.

Lastly, I'm really hoping I'll get to read The Wilderness at some point soon as some of my favourite parts in this book where when The Wilderness was explored. Some of the superb action happened in the Wilds and it was almost like Jackson became a different person out there. He was more like this old self but learning to adapt with what The Academy had taught him but on his own. You get the impression that naturally Jackson is the type of character who is more comfortable in his own company but this book doesn't allow him that.

Overall, wow. I just enjoyed this immensely. So...

Amy Bookworm rated this book:

and she hopes you'll read it. What are you delaying for? Get on it.


Kaitlin Snider said...

I don't think I've ever read a British dystopia . . . but I would love to! I love the feel of British books, and this one sounds really good. Very interesting too!

Debbie Turner said...

This has been on my wishlist for ages! Glad you enjoyed it :-)

cloveryness said...

I'm really glad that you enjoyed this one, I did too. I especially loved the importance placed on reading and literacy. I have The Wilderness on my Kindle and hoping to get to it soon!

AwesomeAmy said...

@Kaitlin: Oh, do! If you have any but just haven't had impetus to read them or would just like to read British books (highly recommended from girl @ Spreading UKYA :P) then have you heard that Project UKYA are doing a readathon this Easter (long weekend)? Maybe you'll take part? Thanks for popping in!

@Debbie: GET READING IT. Thanks for stopping by :)

@Michelle: I'm jealous you have the sequel... Gimme? The elements of literacy were crucial, it adds to your pity of them. Thanks for dropping in! Happy reading The Wilderness (if you haven't, and if you have, anything else).

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