Author: Alexandra Duncan
Release Date: August 1, 2017
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Formats: Hardcover, eBook
When an agribusiness facility producing genetically engineered food releases a deadly toxin into the environment, seventeen-year-old Tempest Torres races to deliver the cure before time runs out.
From the author of the acclaimed American Booksellers Association’s Indies Introduce pick Salvage, which was called “Brilliant, feminist science fiction” by Stephanie Perkins, the internationally bestselling author of Anna and the French Kiss. This stand-alone action-adventure story is perfect for fans of Oryx and Crake and The House of the Scorpion.
Seventeen-year-old Tempest Torres has lived on the AgraStar farm north of Atlanta, Georgia, since she was found outside its gates at the age of five. Now she’s part of the security force guarding the fence and watching for scavengers—people who would rather steal genetically engineered food from the Company than work for it. When a group of such rebels accidentally sets off an explosion in the research compound, it releases into the air a blight that kills every living thing in its path—including humans. With blight-resistant seeds in her pocket, Tempest teams up with a scavenger boy named Alder and runs for help. But when they finally arrive at AgraStar headquarters, they discover that there’s an even bigger plot behind the blight—and it’s up to them to stop it from happening again.
Inspired by current environmental issues, specifically the genetic adjustment of seeds to resist blight and the risks of not allowing natural seed diversity, this is an action-adventure story that is Margaret Atwood’s Oryx and Crake meets Nancy Farmer’s House of the Scorpion.
Blight is an action-packed young adult novel that focuses on the topic of genetically engineered crops and the possible impact they can have on our society. I'm not a huge reader of environmental fiction, so this was definitely a departure for me. I think the author did a great job of both explaining the core concepts surrounding the environmental topics as well as the various problems - natural and man-made - that can be caused by them. I found it to be informative and thought-provoking - it made me sit back and think about where we are with this science and how far off something like this may be for us.
I liked Tempest as the main character for the story. She was realistic with both positive qualities and faults, like everyone else. I admired her bravery, determination, and her belief in what she had to do. I also liked that she had a different backstory that we got to learn about over the course of the book. It helped to explain how she became the person she is and how she struggles with both sides of herself - the one devoted to AgraStar and the person she is inside. The story is told from Tempest's point of view, which was a great choice (in my opinion). I always prefer the first person POV because of the deeper personal connection it allows with the narrator - and this book was no exception. I enjoyed getting to know Tempest and everything that went through her mind - emotions, memories, hopes and dreams, fears, and so much more. It was a perfect choice for writing style and I don't think I would have liked the story as much if it was done in a different way. I recommend this novel for fans of environmental fiction, contemporary fiction, and science fiction.
Alexandra Duncan is a writer and librarian. Her first novel, Salvage, was published April 1, 2014, by Greenwillow Books. Her short fiction has appeared in several Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy anthologies and The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction. She loves anything that gets her hands dirty – pie-baking, leatherworking, gardening, drawing, and rolling sushi. She lives with her husband and two monstrous, furry cats in the mountains of Western North Carolina.
You can visit her online at http://alexandra-duncan.com/
(1) Winner will receive a signed hardcover of BLIGHT - US Only!
7/24/2017- Savings in Seconds- Review
7/25/2017- The Autumn Bookshelf- Interview
7/26/2017- Wandering Bark Books- Excerpt
7/27/2017- A Dream Within A Dream- Review
7/28/2017- Two Chicks on Books- Interview
7/31/2017- Buried Under Books- Review
8/1/2017- The Bewitched Reader- Guest Post
8/2/2017- Here's to Happy Endings- Review
8/3/2017- Kati's Bookaholic Rambling Reviews- Excerpt
8/4/2017- YABooksCentral- Review