Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Restoring Harmony

Restoring Harmony
Joelle Anthony
Putnam Juvenile, 2010 

I have been looking forward to this book since Publisher's Weekly ran an article early this year about upcoming YA dystopia titles. Restoring Harmony is not mentioned in the article, but did appear in the accompanying list of upcoming titles (this list seems to have disappeared from their site). After reading a few short descriptions of the book, I got super excited -- not only does it take place in Portland where I live, but it discusses what may happen when we run out of oil, plus there's a bit of romance as well.

The year is 2041, and sixteen-year-old Molly McClure has lived a relatively quiet life on an isolated farming island in Canada, but when her family fears the worst may have happened to her grandparents in the US, Molly must brave the dangerous, chaotic world left after global economic collapse—one of massive oil shortages, rampant crime, and abandoned cities.

Molly is relieved to find her grandparents alive in their Portland suburb, but they’re financially ruined and practically starving. What should’ve been a quick trip turns into a full-fledged rescue mission. And when Molly witnesses something the local crime bosses wishes she hadn’t, Molly’s only way home may be to beat them at their own game. Luckily, there’s a handsome stranger who’s willing to help.
From Goodreads website

Unlike many of the other dystopias I've read recently this one is extremely plausible and realistic. Only being about thirty years in the future rather than hundreds helps with realism and believability, but the events leading up to the current situation are highly plausible and even likely. There's no crazy natural disasters or bizarre epidemics -- the world runs out of oil, pollution is at an all time high, and the world economies collapse. All of which are completely possible. Plus all of this background information is introduced and discussed easily and naturally throughout the story. There's no confusion about why the world is as it is; everything is explained and accounted for.

Besides just really liking the whole premise of the book, I really loved Molly. She's an excellent female character; she's strong, smart, and has a huge heart. Molly makes mistakes and freaks out just like normal teenagers. Everything doesn't go perfectly, but she finds a way to make things work and help her family.

I loved this book; a definite must read for any dystopia lover.
Add to the top of your to-read pile

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