It would be super easy to dismiss any new dystopian young adult trilogies as copycats of the Hunger Games phenomenon — except the authors of these books keep coming up with scarier — and brilliantly original — ways of showing us how the future could go horribly, horribly wrong. Veronica Rossi did that with this year’s Under the Never Sky, which followed 17-year-old Aria exiled from a (literally) sheltered world where devices implanted in people’s eyes create a virtual reality to keep them content to remain indoors forever. Outside, dangerous lightning makes everyday life a gamble, but some Outsiders, like Peregrine, have acute senses to help them and their tribes survive. Of course, Perry and Aria meet up, and their chemistry rivals those deadly lightning bolts. Until, that is, their heroic antics force them to part ways.
In the trailer for book two, Through the Ever Night, we see that Perry and Aria will be reunited, thank goodness. But since this is the second book in a trilogy, we know things won’t be all happily ever after right away.
Yesterday, David Levithan told us that he doesn’t think people finish reading The Hunger Games and immediately want to pick up another dystopian novel. Well, we agree that we like to space these dark books out a bit, but they are addictive. And once a month or so, we’ve been picking up a new one. If you’re just starting to be obsessed, begin with the books we talked about during this Dystopian Week, especially with NextMovie.com’s list of books with movies in the works, then scroll back through Hollywood Crush’s first Dystopian Week suggestions from back in April. Here are some that we haven’t read yet but are next on our own to-read list.
Birthmarked, by Caragh M. O’Brien: In this version of the future, the world is divided between people who live inside the Enclave, and the unfortunate who live outside its walls. Gaia Stone is a 16-year-old novice midwife, and part of her duty is to hand over a quota of babies to the Enclave. But then her parents are taken away, and she has to figure out what’s really going on behind those walls.
The Eleventh Plague, by Jeff Hirsch: The cover bears a quote from Suzanne Collins herself, calling it “an excellent, taut debut novel,” so you probably can’t go wrong with this one. Stephen Quinn was born after two-thirds of the country was wiped out by influenza (that the Chinese released here on purpose) and has grown up barely scraping by as a salvager. But after a family tragedy, the 15-year-old finds his way to a community called Settler’s Landing, where he falls in love and learns that things aren’t as great in the town as they initially appeared to be.