And we're back with another fun look back at an older YA book to see if I still think it's good or not. Today, or prior to today, I reread Malinda Lo's Adaptation! (There might be a little bleed-through of the second half of the duology, Inheritance, because they do go hand in hand.)
Author: Malinda Lo
Release Date: September 18, 2012
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (Hachette Book Group imprint)
Reese can’t remember anything from the time between the accident and the day she woke up almost a month later. She only knows one thing: She’s different now.
Across North America, flocks of birds hurl themselves into airplanes, causing at least a dozen to crash. Thousands of people die. Fearing terrorism, the United States government grounds all flights, and millions of travelers are stranded.
Reese and her debate team partner and longtime crush David are in Arizona when it happens. Everyone knows the world will never be the same. On their drive home to San Francisco, along a stretch of empty highway at night in the middle of Nevada, a bird flies into their headlights. The car flips over. When they wake up in a military hospital, the doctor won’t tell them what happened, where they are—or how they’ve been miraculously healed.
Things become even stranger when Reese returns home. San Francisco feels like a different place with police enforcing curfew, hazmat teams collecting dead birds, and a strange presence that seems to be following her. When Reese unexpectedly collides with the beautiful Amber Gray, her search for the truth is forced in an entirely new direction—and threatens to expose a vast global conspiracy that the government has worked for decades to keep secret.
My revisit conclusion: it's still really good! It's like sci-fi lite, set in the present day with some creeping in of aliens and advanced technology and conspiracy theories and a secretive government (because aren't they all? *winky face*). I do like stories like this, when it's set in the present day and everything's as the reader knows it but there's something that's a little different, something unfamiliar and chaotic in all the mundane.
What books like this seem to be about, to me, is about the unexpected. How sometimes it comes right at us, barreling into us, and we're just left behind to pick up the pieces and move on. But we know something's different, something's changed, and there's no one there to ask why or how or if it can be stopped or how long it's going to last or why us. Why now. And now that it's happened, how do we navigate this familiar but slightly different space when no one's there to guide us? I mean, there are figures there to guide us as best as they can, but it's not 100%. We have to learn on our own, and that can be a frightening prospect when we don't understand what's happened.
So if you haven't read this duology and you're looking for some sci-fi, far less violent and deadly than Independance Day with a fair amount of alien confusion and romance, then give it a chance. It flips back and forth between alien secrets and tension to teenage romance and Reese questioning her sexuality.
I hope you've enjoyed this week of looking back at a couple of slightly older YA books. I'll probably do this again when I get a free week or two. :)