A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Kids learn about the politics and ethical issues of the death penalty. Readers also are encouraged to protect and care for the beautiful planet on which we live.
Moderation is key. Kids get a glimpse of the problems that come with too much or too little government involvement. Also, at times, it's good to question authority to discover the truth for yourself.
Positive Role Models
Each of the four main characters displays great loyalty, bravery, and self-sacrifice. However, at times these characters make decisions based on hormonal impulses rather than analytical reasoning.
Violence & Scariness
One man is shot with a gun, and another boy is shot with a bow and arrow. It's discussed that many people have been executed by the government through lethal injection. A mother, who suffers from mental illness, commits suicide in front of her two children. There are fistfights and an attempted rape.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
It is revealed that teens engage in consensual sexual relationships, as one teen ends up pregnant. However, these scenes are not described in detail. Passionate kissing takes place among boys and girls.
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Lots of uses of “bulls--t," "sh-t," "bitch," "bastard," and "ass."
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Two of the three wings on the spacecraft are occupied by lower-income families known to suffer from alcohol and drug addictions. Also, a secondary character develops a drug addiction to sleeping pills, which were prescribed to her while she was in the hospital.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The 100: Book 1 closely follows four juvenile delinquents and their journey to recolonize Earth after only ever living in space. It's a futuristic dystopian novel that includes some violence. All crimes committed are punishable by death through lethal injection, and it's mentioned that countless people in the colony have already been executed. One character is shot with a gun, and another with a bow and arrow -- their fates are left unknown to the reader. A son finds his mother on the kitchen floor submerged in her own blood after she attempts to commit suicide. Teens engage in consensual sexual relationships, and there's passionate kissing. One of the main characters (a teen girl) becomes pregnant, which is a capital crime due to the strict population-control laws. There's an attempted rape. Drug and alcohol abuse are discussed, and one character battles an addiction to prescription pills. There's also a hefty amount of swearing ("bulls--t," "bitch," "s--t," "bastard," and "a--hole").
Is It Any Good?
The 100: Book 1 is a captivating novel about four teens who set out to survive the most impossible of circumstances. Author Kass Morgan effortlessly weaves the four narrators' tales while cascading between the past and present. Flashbacks don’t always work in novels, but here, scenes flow naturally and keep the reader anxious to learn more about each individual’s personal story. Morgan examines issues that could arise if there were a cataclysmic decline in society while subtly shedding light on contemporary real-life political issues. Also, readers must consider the ethical dilemma of whether to punish another human being by depriving him or her of life.
For sci-fi seekers, the only drawback is the hopelessly romantic one-liners topped with extra cheese, such as, “He tasted like joy and joy tasted better on Earth.”
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.