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Selling Points: "dystopian, totalitarianism, crime, big business, freedom, technology, speculative fiction"
Publisher: Orca Book Publishers
Pub Date: Sep/01/2014
Fry Reading Level: 3.5
The year is 2147. Chago, twenty-four, is a prisoner in a world made up only of prisoners and those who guard them. The only bright spot in Chago’s life is his son, Jim-Jim, whose mother is a guard. In an effort to resolve overcrowding in the prison, the warden introduces the Innocence Device, a high-tech machine he claims can determine innocence or guilt. Prisoners are encouraged to walk through the Innocence Device and experience its rewards: immediate freedom or death. When they discover the machine is rigged, the prisoners riot and take over the prison. After witnessing the execution-style death of the mother of his son, and surviving a brief stint outside the prison walls, Chago ends up in a position of power. But he soon finds the new regime little different from the old, and he sets out to save the only thing he values—his son.
The Deakin Review of Children's Literature - May 20, 2015
"[A] thought-provoking, quick-read, thriller...Chago, although simple and unassuming, is a character that many readers will cheer on to due to his familiar struggles with bullying, fear, authority, and love for family...This book will engage young adult readers, and certainly be a popular addition to any school library."
CM Magazine - December 12, 2014
"An exciting and thought-provoking novel that low literate readers would likely enjoy very much. Even adults looking for a quicker read will be captivated by this exciting narrative."
In the Margins Book Award list, long-listed
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