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No Safety in Numbersby Dayna Lorentz
Synopses & Reviews
Sixteen-year-old Mia Kish's small town of Fenton, Colorado is known for three things: being home to the world's tallest sycamore tree, the national chicken-thigh-eating contest and one of the ritziest boarding schools in the country, Westbrook Academy. But when emergency sirens start blaring and Westbrook is put on lockdown, quarantined and surrounded by soldiers who shoot first and ask questions later, Mia realizes she's only just beginning to discover what makes Fenton special.
And the answer is behind the wall of the Cave, aka Fenton Electronics, of which her father is the Director. Mia's dad has always been secretive about his work, allowing only that he's working for the government. But unless Mia's willing to let the whole town succumb to a strange illness that ages people years in a matter of hours, the end result death, she's got to break quarantine, escape the school grounds and outsmart armed soldiers to uncover the truth.
"Lorentz's YA debut cogently explores the impact of an emergency situation on multiple characters in a finite space. An ordinary day at the mall turns deadly after the discovery of a biological bomb in the air ducts prompts an immediate lockdown, trapping thousands of shoppers inside. With information scarce and security on alert, everyone approaches the situation differently. Restaurant worker Marco tries to do his job, senator's daughter Lexi attempts to figure out the truth, quirky Shay takes care of her ailing grandmother, and athletic Ryan joins others in an effort to escape. As their paths cross and stories overlap, these four teens find friends and romance, even as society breaks down around them and a fatal disease claims numerous victims. This tense trilogy opener takes its time establishing the memorably diverse and sympathetic characters, while foreshadowing and vivid staging (stores in the mall take on special significance under the circumstances) build a sense of claustrophobia and desperation. Very little is resolved before the inevitable cliffhanger, but readers will eagerly await the next installment. Ages 12 — up. Agent: Faye Bender, Faye Bender Literary Agency. (May)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
A suspenseful survival story and modern day Lord of the Flies set in a mall that looks just like yours.
"Think of the heart-racing chase of The Hunger Games, but a giant mall is your arena."--Seventeen.com
A biological bomb has just been discovered in the air ducts of a busy suburban mall. At first nobody knows if it's even life threatening, but then the entire complex is quarantined, people start getting sick, supplies start running low, and there's no way out. Among the hundreds of trapped shoppers are four teens.
These four different narrators, each with their own stories, must cope in unique, surprising manners, changing in ways they wouldn't have predicted, trying to find solace, safety, and escape at a time when the adults are behaving badly.
This is a gripping look at people and how they can--and must--change under the most dire of circumstances.
And not always for the better.
About the Author
Dayna Lorentz (www.daynalorentz.com) lives in South Burlington, Vermont.
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