A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this book's plot is thin but solid, and the writing spare yet powerful. The appeal of a boy free to set his own course in life offsets the slow pace.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
A century from now, humans--living in ignorance of their free past--are subjects of an unseen master race. But one boy's chance meeting with a wandering free man sets him on an odyssey in search of liberty. The story's pace and gravity date it, but the message of the value of free will and self-determination is timeless.
Is it any good?
This book has a fascinating premise, and though its pace is slow -- especially for today's young readers, who are used to roller-coaster movie action -- the rewards are great. This is an adventure for thoughtful young people.
The growing realization of the young hero, Will Parker, that he cannot help but reject his docile society, will resonate with passionate young readers who question their own world and their place in it. And his journey is a rite of passage much like adolescence itself. He becomes much more self-aware, but he has his doubts, and at one point he is prepared to settle for easy luxury among the nobility, even if it means abandoning his friends and his quest.