Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Thriller Publication.Date November 5th 2013 Pages: 352 Published By: Balzer + Bray Author Sean Williams Twinmaker on Goodreads My review copy: Received from the publisher via Book Nerd Tours in exchange for an honest review.
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High-stakes action combines with issues of friendship and body image in this timely and thought-provoking exploration of the intersection of technology and identity.
You can be Improved....
In a near-future world in which technology can transport you anywhere instantly, can a coded note enable you to change your body—to become taller, stronger, more beautiful? Clair is pretty sure the offer is too good to be true. But her best friend, Libby, is determined to give it a try, longing for a new, improved version of herself.
What starts as Libby’s dream turns into Clair’s nightmare when Libby falls foul of a deadly trap. With the help of Jesse, the school freak, and a mysterious—but powerful—stranger called Q, Clair’s attempt to protect Libby leads her to an unimagined world of conspiracies and cover-ups. Soon her own life is at risk, and Clair is chased across the world in a desperate race against time.
Action and danger fuel Sean Williams’ tale of technology, identity, and the lengths to which one girl will go to save her best friend.
Nothing is hidden, and everything is ignored. The surveillance state doesn't need violence to perpetrate injustice. All it needs is our indifference.
Beauty is a terrible and awful thing where boundaries meet and all contradictions exist side by side.
This is war, and we're vastly outnumbered, but that never stopped anyone from being right. You understand that better than anyone. We can sit here arguing about the means all day - you want to tear the system down and start again, while I want the system to fix itself as it's supposed to - but the ends we want to achieve are not at all that different. We want people to be safe. We don't want people to be altered in ways they shouldn't. That's what everyone wants. Can't we find a way to do this together? No one ever changed the world acting alone.
Claire could be anywhere. Would she step out of the booth twenty-five years later with two left feet and her heart on the wrong side of her chest? Would she lose her name and be stuck, unable to convince anyone of who she really was? Would she end up like Libby, beautiful, with a new nose and proud of it... or brain damaged and delusional?
Teleportation, cloning, body snatchers, government conspiracies and themes of identity and self image - Sean Williams explores all that and more in his first YA novel, Twinmaker. It's a great, intellectually stimulating Science Fiction thriller, and one that is sure to appeal to teens and adults alike.
Twinmaker offers an action-packed, dramatic and twisty ride. With every page turned, you learn something new - often disturbing or shocking - about the world and the technology that rules it. And you get really curious. You want to get down to the bottom of it all and find out what's really going on here. You begin to question characters and their motives, second guess them and wonder who is really the "bad guy" here. It's an addictive and absorbing read for sure and, while at times the pacing was a little bit too slow for me, I did enjoy it a lot. Especially the thorough and complex worldbuilding, the fascinating technology and all the awesome scientific details. All Sci Fi fans will love this one for sure!
At the same time, while I loved all the Science Fiction elements, I did not connect with any of the characters. I'm not sure why. They were well fleshed out and they all had distinct personalities, but I just couldn't relate to any of them. I felt indifferent towards them and didn't really care what would happen to them in the end. I was more interested in the conspiracy surrounding the advanced technology and the mystery behind it, than I was in the fates of the people involved in this story.
I really liked the idea of being able to travel to any place in the world in a blink of an eye. It was such a cool and sweet concept, and yet considering how things could (and did) easily go wrong, it was also quite a scary one! Just think about the possibilities, though! No more air or ground travel, no more pollution, so many problems solved just like that! You could hang out with your friends who live on the other side of the planet, and you could do it as often as you wanted, without wasting time on travelling or paying a penny to get there! But that's not even all of it! D-mats (the teleportation devices), can do so much more than just teleport you to a different location. The fabbers can recognize patterns of things and then re-create them, you can order food, clothing.. and just about anything else you need (as long as it's not a living thing - it's the only rule), and you'll get it within minutes, seconds even!
But every great technological improvement comes with its risks and possible consequences. D-mat is not perfect. There are people out there who want to use it to their own advantage, and those people don't care about every-day users. There are glitches in the system that can cause permanent damage to your body and brain, even death. They promise improvement, but what they really do is steal your soul and your body. What price are you willing to pay for being smarter, prettier, braver, faster, more skilled in something? Twinmaker invites you to think about technology and how it affects our lives. It's a "food for thought" kind of book, but also just a really well-written futuristic thriller.
Overall, I had a lot of fun reading Twinmaker and will definitely be reading the sequel when it comes out. The ending was simply mind-blowing, I can't wait to find out what happens next! I recommend this book to those of you who enjoy well-thought-out, complex plot lines full of fascinating ideas and thrilling developments. You'll love how intelligent and deftly plotted this book is!
About the author:
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#1 New York Times bestselling Sean Williams lives with his family in Adelaide, South Australia. He’s written some books--thirty-nine at last count--including the Philip K. Dick-nominated Saturn Returns, several Star Wars novels and the Troubletwister series with Garth Nix. Twinmaker is the first in a new YA SF series that takes his love affair with the matter transmitter to a whole new level. You can find some related short stories over at Lightspeed Magazine. Thanks for reading.
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