Monday, January 14, 2013

The Drowned Cities by Paolo Bacigalupi

Title: The Drowned Cities
Author: Paolo Bacigalupi
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Acquired: Received free for an honest review
Age Group: Young Adult
Grade: 88% or B+
Buy It: Amazon
Soldier boys emerged from the darkness. Guns gleamed dully. Bullet bandoliers and scars draped their bare chests. Ugly brands scored their faces. She knew why these soldier boys had come. She knew what they sought, and she knew, too, that if they found it, her best friend would surely die.
In a dark future America where violence, terror, and grief touch everyone, young refugees Mahlia and Mouse have managed to leave behind the war-torn lands of the Drowned Cities by escaping into the jungle outskirts. But when they discover a wounded half-man—a bioengineered war beast named Tool—who is being hunted by a vengeful band of soldiers, their fragile existence quickly collapses. One is taken prisoner by merciless soldier boys, and the other is faced with an impossible decision: Risk everything to save a friend, or flee to a place where freedom might finally be possible.
My Thoughts::
I enjoyed Ship Breaker so much and I was very happy to read this companion novel. It's so cool getting a back story on one of the most interesting characters in Ship Breaker as well as getting to know some more fascinating people. Even more so I loved learning more about the world that Bacigalupi created and how some of the destruction happened.

Mahlia was great, in fact all of the characters were great. What I love so much about them is that, especially when it comes to females, it isn't some awesome novelty and surprise when the female is strong and determined. To live in this new world that is the norm, so Mahlia got to be a character and it wasn't some crazy big deal. I love this because authors never make a big deal when a boy is strong and independent, so why should they for a girl?

My favorite part of dystopian or futuristic novels is the world building and finding out how everything got the way that it is. At the end of Ship Breaker, I was left wanting to know sooo much. Since this book took place before Ship Breaker, there was a lot of new information given that cleared up a lot of questions that I had.

The action in the novel was so great. It wasn't over the top, but it was very gripping. I got to know the characters so well that I felt connected to them and wanted them to be fine. So when they were fighting and near death, I couldn't help but hold my breath.

Overall I think that this was a great development for the world that Bacigalupi is building. There was plenty of action and it was great with characters, especially Tool. I was so sucked into the novel at times that I couldn't be distracted.

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