Parents' Guide to

The Scattering: The Outliers, Book 2

By Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Sequel has more twists, turns but less all around.

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After a slower-than-expected first half, this thriller sequel eventually takes a dizzying amount of turns without satisfyingly resolving much or even furthering the story. That's not to say some readers won't find the tale riveting, but the plot allows so many supposedly dead or finished characters and plot lines to resurface that it takes readers on a virtually never-ending loop. It's easy, by the final melodramatic revelations, to feel less invested in Wylie, who makes a staggering number of ill-advised decisions for someone with extraordinary intuition, and Jasper. Their friendship was one of the best aspects of the first book, but in this second book, there was little progress in their obvious attraction and attachment.

Readers hoping for more clarity and romance will be slightly disappointed by The Scattering. It basically continues to throw a soap-opera-ish level of surprises into the mix, with few memorable supporting characters, except for Riel, a hacker with connections to the Outliers, and her boyfriend, Leo. One reason for some possible confusion is that author Kimberly McCreight expects readers to remember the characters and details of the first book and doesn't revisit the importance of certain plot points or supporting characters. McCreight will have a long list of questions to answer and unresolved plot threads to weave together in the final book.

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