Friday, August 16, 2013

Book Talk: DON'T TURN AROUND by Michelle Gagnon

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.

Noa is a sixteen-year-old who has been through the system, and learned how to beat it on her own. Shuttled from one foster home to the next after her parents were killed in a fiery car crash when she was very young, Noa has learned the hard way that she can't trust anybody. Nobody was going to save her, so she saved herself with her hacker skills, setting herself up with a fake ID and a fake father who does tech work online, while she cashes his paychecks. Noa thought she could take care of herself... until she woke up on an illegal operating table in a warehouse, with no memory of how she got there.

Peter's life has always been easy. Rich non-invasive parents, a massive house, and all the tech gadgets he could ever want. An easy life isn't necessarily rewarding though, so Peter set up a hacker group called The Alliance, whose goal is to defend the defenseless. Identifying pedophiles, finding animal cruelty videos and ruining the lives of those people through their computers makes Peter feel like he's actually doing something. But when he hacks into the wrong files on his dad's computer, the front door is kicked in before he can log out and he's warned in no uncertain terms what he can do with his curiosity.

But Peter has never been one for listening, and the files he saw only briefly made it clear that someone is searching for a cure for PEMA - the wasting disease that kills anyone who is infected, the disease that killed his older brother and turned his parents into the unaffectionate robots he inherited. When fate crosses his path with a street girl named Noa who has a scar she can't explain and no need for sleep or food, the two of them team up to find out who is pulling kids off the street... and what they're doing to them.


Pili said...

Well, it does sound very intriguing!

Mindy McGinnis said...

Pili - this is one of the better books I've read in awhile!