My stepmother Angela gave this book to me for Christmas several years back, and it is a mark of how well she knows me that it is exactly in my wheelhouse. It’s a post-apocalyptic dystopia, told through the eyes of the ickily-named Spaz, who ekes out an existence in the slums and fights to save the life of his one-time foster sister with the help of the elderly Ryter, an adorable orphan child, and a privileged scion of the utopian Eden.
This book could have been written specifically for me.
It’s compulsively readable, even with — or perhaps even because of — all he future slang and determined classism. It’s hard to quite understand the economy of this world, especially in the halcyon “proov” enclave in which everyone is genetically engineered and disdainful of the “normals” struggling for life outside the radiation-proof dome of Eden, but that doesn’t really matter when the message of the novel, of equality and conscience how politically active youth can change the world, is so powerful.
There are tears, of course, and not many laughs, but it is a thoroughly immersive experience, both heart-breaking and hopeful, and one I shall not soon forget.
TBR DAY 145: The Last Book in the Universe by Rodman Philbrick
GENRE: YA, Post-Apocalyptic, Science Fiction
TIME ON THE TBR: 4 years.
PURCHASED FROM: It was a Christmas gift.