August 11, 2019

Karen Healey: "While We Run"

Title: While We Run [on Amazon | on Goodreads]
Series: When We Wake (2nd of 2 books)
Author: Karen Healey [Site | Goodreads]
Genres: Sci-Fi
Year: 2014
Age: 14+
Stars: 4.5/5
Pros: Strong, mostly diverse characters with distinctive voices, often dealing with moral dilemmas and hard decisions to make. Never a dull moment, even when the pace gets slower.
Cons: A few familiar tropes/premises.
WARNING! Offscreen torture (but we also get a few glimpses of it) and rape. Some gruesome deaths.
Will appeal to: Readers who care about the state our world is in. Readers who like a thrilling yet romantic adventure.

Blurb: Abdi Taalib thought he was moving to Australia for a music scholarship. But after meeting the beautiful and brazen Tegan Oglietti, his world was turned upside down. Tegan's no ordinary girl - she died in 2027, only to be frozen and brought back to life in Abdi's time, 100 years later. Now, all they want is for things to return to normal (or as normal as they can be), but the government has other ideas. Especially since the two just spilled the secrets behind Australia's cryonics project to the world. On the run, Abdi and Tegan have no idea who they can trust - and, when they uncover startling new details about the program, they realize that thousands of lives may be in their hands. (Amazon)

Review: I'm ordinarily all for books without tropes, or employing as little of them as it's humanly possible - but sometimes an author can breath new life into an old concept, or make up for a familiar scenario with a great execution. Both things happen in While We Run - hence my rating. (Also, for your information, this one is set in Australia, which is a nice change from your usual all-American scenario).


For books with such a meaty sci-fi premise, both While We Run and its predecessor When We Wake are, at their core, good old dystopians, but with an unusually strong SJW vein, dealing with ethical, environmental, and even political issues. And the latter is especially true about WWR, since its main character Abdi (who was Tegan's sidekick in When We Wake) is a Djibouti immigrate, whose politician mother has indoctrinated him since a very young age with the tricks of her trade. This duology may be built on a few tropes, but it's entirely its own thing, and one we rarely see in YA. Especially WWR, with its diverse lead and his peculiar outlook. Abdi is a thinker, an observer, even a manipulator if need be (but he questions himself and realises it's not ethical to act like that around friends). He's also an atheist, unlike Tegan and Bethari (and most of his family, not to mention country), and while believers might find him harsh, he's a fascinating, complex character with a conscience, if not a creed. And he does struggle with doing the right thing, or choosing the lesser of two evils, which makes him stand out among your usual holier-than-thou or (most often) one-track-mind characters. [...]

August 04, 2019

Tooting Your Trumpet #3

Some people toot their own trumpet. I mean to toot yours. On the first Sunday of every month, I'm sharing your posts, your sites, anything interesting I stumble upon during my internet vagrancies. This month on TYT...
  • TUNNELVILLE (a YA novel, the second installment in the Mad World series by Erin Callahan & Troy H. Gardner, that recently got a makeover)
  • LIBRARY MISCONCEPTIONS (a funny post on Shayna's blog Clockwork Bibliotheca - and the first one in her "library series" - where she discloses all the weird things librarians get told on a daily basis/people assume about them)
  • FEEDBOOKS (a site where you can find copyright-free books to download!)
  •  DIVERSE BOOKS (a list on Kristen's blog Metaphors and Moonlight)

July 30, 2019

Tell Me Something Tuesday: Let’s Make New Friends: Share Some of Your Favourite Blogs

Tell Me Something Tuesday is a weekly discussion post on Rainy Day Ramblings, where the blog's owner Heidi discusses a wide range of topics from books to blogging. Weigh in and join the conversation by adding your thoughts in the comments. If you want to do your own post, grab the question and answer it on your blog.
Here is what is on deck this week:


Most of the blogs I'm listing here will probably be familiar to you. The book blogging community is quite a tight one, and I love that about it. But even if this list should end up being a shout-out to all my closest blogging friends and nothing else, hey, it would be time well spent 😘. Here goes (in strictly alphabetical order by blog name)...