Monday, March 21, 2011

Review - Human .4

Mike A. Lancaster
Egmont USA
Kyle only volunteered to be hypnotized at the local talent show to save his friend some embarrassment, but during the time that he's out, something happens. Not to him or to the other three volunteers on stage with him, but to everybody else. When Kyle wakes up his parents might look the same and sound the same, but there's definitely something inexplicably off about them, as well as everyone else in town. Add to this the fact that phones, televisions, computers -- nothing -- works anymore, and there's a definitely threat of something dangerous looming larger. As Kyle and the others who were hypnotized wonder if the problem might be with them and not everybody around them, they head out of town to find out just what happened to the world -- or to them -- while they were under hypnosis.

The narrative style of this book is one I haven't seen since Jay Asher's Thirteen Reasons Why. Kyle's account of what happened to him is transcribed from old cassette tapes with asides from a future society to explain parts of his story as well as the "primitive" human society of the early 21st century. These "academic notes" are easily some of the best parts of the book, offering a glimpse into parts of the big picture of this story that we know little to nothing about through Kyle's narration.

In terms of plot, I'm hesitant to say too much as this book is very much a mystery and a lot of what actually happens during and after the hypnosis isn't revealed until the end of the book. While this definitely makes for a story you want to keep reading, it also means that there's a lot of questions without answers. As the story is told from Kyle's POV (point-of-view) and there's a lot he doesn't know, this makes sense but it does leave a lot to the imagination.

For readers looking for more science fiction in YA, this is definitely a story we haven't seen before. It's not dystopian, but it is suspenseful and plot-driven, a welcome addition to sci-fi in YA.

1 comment:

  1. I just bought this one and it looks great. Can't wait to read it!