Friday, May 24, 2013

Book Talk: TRANSPARENT by Natalie Whipple

My book talks are coming at you from a librarian, not a reviewer. You won't find me talking about style or craft, why I think this could've been better or what worked or didn't work. I only do book talks on books I liked and want other people to know about. So if it's here I probably think it won't injure your brain if you read it.

Radiasure is the drug of choice in the fallout after the Cold War. It was supposed to protect the citizens of the US from radiation in the event of an attack that never came. The first mutations came years later - people who could fly, those with blue skin, and the occasional mind-controller. The Radiasure trickled down through generations - right up to Fiona, who was dropped by the Doctor the moment she was born because he couldn't see her. She's the first invisible person.

Fiona doesn't know what she looks like, and no one has ever seen her. Not her telekinetic mother, her sadistic flying brother, or her mob boss father, who uses his powers of persuasion to get whatever he wants - from anybody. Fiona has been his eyes and ears at meetings no one knew she was at and the thief that no one can catch. But when he gives her an order that would make her an assassin, his powers of persuasion fall short against her conscience.

Fiona and her mother flee, hoping that distance and time will allow his influence over them to fade. Setting up in the territory of a rival mob boss for protection, her mother insists that Fiona have a chance at a normal life. She goes to the small local high school, only to find out that being dropped at birth has left her with a learning disability her home tutors never told her about, and the tutor assigned to help her doesn't hold back the sarcasm when she can't remember how to multiply.

But his attractive brother - gifted with the power of crushing strength - definitely has Fiona's attention. Along with the other gifted students, Fiona begins to build a tentative home in the small Southwestern town, always fearing the her mother will cave to the desire to be back with her father and it will all be torn from her in moments. Fiona is finding out that she likes normality, and even her freckled math tutor is starting to grow on her when her brother falls from the sky, promising not to reveal their location as long as they do as he says.

Fiona remembers too well how her brother gets his way - flying anyone who goes against him thousands of feet into the air and dropping them. He's always caught Fiona at the last second in the past, but that doesn't mean she trusts him. She doesn't know whether to cut her ties and run now - or even if she can.

4 comments:

Robin said...

I'm reading Transparent right now. I agree. It won't hurt your mind.

thepunchylands said...

So...she was dropped at birth instead of switched at birth?

Prof VJ

Precy Larkins said...

Wow, sounds awesome!

Mindy McGinnis said...

Robin - agreed! It's a fun one.

Prof - Can't put anything past you.

Precy - It's a really interesting twist... an MC that you can't see!