Friday, January 22, 2010

Feed by M.T. Anderson

Minor spoilers.

Author: M.T. Anderson
Year of Publication: 2004
Genre: Science Fiction, Satire, YA, Futuristic, Dystopia
Pages: 300
First Line: "We went to the moon to have fun, but the moon turned out to completely suck."

Summary: "We went to the moon to have fun, but the moon turned out to completely suck." So says Titus, a teenager whose ability to read, write, and even think for himself has been almost completely obliterated by his "feed," a transmitter implanted directly into his brain. Feeds are a crucial part of life for Titus and his friends. But then Titus meets Violet, a girl who cares about what's happening to the world and challenges everything Titus holds dear. A girl who decides to fight the feed.

Source: Back of book

Review: This book was excellent. I was aware that this had a lot of praise going into it, but I still wasn't expecting too much -- a lot of these kinds of books (especially today) aren't very good. They may have great concepts but the writing style or whatever fails to support it. I've read some of Anderson's other stuff and it was fantastic as well so this was just more reason to read even more. The style/voice of the character was awesome. It made everything much more real. How they spoke was consistent enough to make a believable society while still keeping each character individual. I would love to go on about how fantastic this book was, but I couldn't explain it just right. So I suggest you just read it. There is so much truth in it, so much stuff that reflects modern-day society and it's so well done and in a subtle-but-not-subtle way. . .

Worst part: There really wasn't much. . .I wish the italic interruptions (you'll understand what I'm talking about if you read it -- not the chatting) were a little more clear. I know they were supposed to be somewhat unclear and. . .well, I understand why they were done that way, but I wish it had been just a little more clear/relevant (though it was all very relevant in the big picture).

Best part: I think either the voice/style or the whole lesions thing was my favorite part. I've already said why about the voice and style, but the lesions idea was really interesting.

Grade: A

Other Books by This Author: Teach Me (also an excellent novel), Thirsty, Burger Wuss, The Game of Sunken Places and others.

Other notes: - I would like to point out that, for the edition I have, the discussion questions at the end were actually pretty good. I usually skim over them if a book has them just out of curiosity and find that they often aren't written well or are just plain stupid, but these were actually not bad.

- This is one of two books I think should be required reading. I'm not sure if schools are ready for this one yet -- 1984 and Brave New World and Anthem and any other dystopian novels (which often involve the evils of technology) have several years left in them, but eventually, Feed should take over because it's more "modernly relevant," mostly because the technology is more recognizable and up-to-date, so to speak. (For those of you wondering, the other book I believe should be required is Give a Boy a Gun by Todd Strasser, which I read independently in the eighth grade or so.)

- Feed was a finalist for the National Book Award.

6 / 50 books. 12% done!

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