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Feed

by

Feed Cover

ISBN13: 9780763662622
ISBN10: 0763662623
Condition: Standard
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Excerpt

It was maybe, okay, maybe it was like two days after the party with the "never pukes when he chugalugs" that Violet chatted me first thing in the morning and said she was working on a brand-new project. I asked her what was the old project, and she was like, did I want to see the new one? I said, Okay, should I come over to su casa? Ive never been there, and she was like, No, not yet. Lets meet at the mall.

I was like, Okay, sure, fine, whatever swings your string, and she was all, Babycakes, you swing my string, which is a nice thing for someone to say to you, especially before you use mouthwash.

So I flew over to the mall near her house through the rain, which was coming down outside in this really hard way. Everyone had on all their lights until they got above the clouds. Up there it was sunny, and people were flying very businesslike.

The mall was really busy, there were a lot of crowds there. They were buying all this stuff, like the inflatable houses for their kids, and the dog massagers, and the tooth extensions that people were wearing, the white ones which you slid over your real teeth and they made your mouth just like one big single tooth going all the way across.

Violet was standing near the fountain and she had a real low shirt on, to show off her lesion, because the stars of the Oh? Wow! Thing! had started to get lesions, so now people were thinking better about lesions, and lesions even looked kind of cool. Violet looked great in her low shirt, and besides that she was smiling, and really excited for her idea.

For a second we said hello and just laughed about all of the stupid things people were buying and then Violet, she pointed out that, regarding legs to stand on, I didnt have very much of one, because I was wheeling around a wheelbarrow full of a giant hot cross bun from Bun in a Barrow.

I said, "Yum, yum, yum."

She was like, "You ready?"

I asked her what the idea was.

She said, "Look around you." I did. It was the mall. She said, "Listen to me." I listened. She said, "I was sitting at the feed doctors a few days ago, and I started to think about things. Okay. All right. Everything we do gets thrown into a big calculation. Like theyre watching us right now. They can tell where youre looking. They want to know what you want."

"Its a mall," I said.

"Theyre also waiting to make you want things. Everything weve grown up with - the stories on the feed, the games, all of that - its all streamlining our personalities so were easier to sell to. I mean, they do these demographic studies that divide everyone up into a few personality types, and then you get ads based on what youre supposedly like. They try to figure out who you are, and to make you conform to one of their types for easy marketing. Its like a spiral: They keep making everything more basic so it will appeal to everyone. And gradually, everyone gets used to everything being basic, so we get less and less varied as people, more simple. So the corps make everything even simpler. And it goes on and on."

This was the kind of thing people talked about a lot, like, parents were going on about how toys were stupid now, when they used to be good, and how everything on the feed had its price, and okay, it might be true, but its also boring, so I was like, "Yeah. Okay. Thats the feed. So what?"

"This is my project."

"Is . . . ?"

She smiled and put her finger inside the collar of my shirt. "Listen," she said. "What Im doing, what Ive been doing over the feed for the last two days, is trying to create a customer profile thats so screwed, no one can market to it. Im not going to let them catalog me. Im going to become invisible."

I stared at her for a minute. She ran her finger along the edge of my collar, so her nail touched the skin of my throat. I waited for an explanation. She didnt tell me any more, but she said to come with her, and she grabbed one of the nodules on my shirt - it was one of those nodule shirts - and she led me toward Bebrekker & Karl.

We went into the store, and immediately our feeds were all completely Bebrekker & Karl. We were bannered with all this crazy high-tech fun stuff they sold there. Then a guy walked up to us and said could he help us. I said I didnt know. But Violet was like, "Sure. Do you have those big searchlights? I mean, the really strong ones?"

"Yeah," he said. "We have . . . yeah. We have those." He went over to some rack, and he took these big searchlights off the rack. He showed us some different models. The feeds had specs. They showed us the specs while he talked.

When he went into the back to get another, cheaper searchlight, I said to Violet, "What next?"

She whispered, "Complicating. Resisting."

Bebrekker & Karl were bannering us big. It was, Weve streamlined the Tesla coil for personal use - you can even wear it in your hair! With these new, da da da, and Relax, yawn, and slump! While our greased cybermassage beads travel up and down your back! Guaranteed to make you etc., like that.

I was like, "Okay, huh?" but the guy came back and he had another searchlight.

He told us, "You can see shit real good with this one? I have one of these on my upcar. Its sometimes like - whoa, really - whoa. There was this one time? And I was flying along at night and I shined the light down at the ground, to look at the tops of all the suburb pods? And all over the top of them, it looked like it was moving, like there was a black goo? So I turned up the brightness, and I went down, and I shined it more bright, and it turned out the black moving goo was all these hordes of cockroaches. There were miles of them, running all over the tops of the domes. . . .

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Average customer rating based on 2 comments:

karinlibrarian, May 17, 2013 (view all comments by karinlibrarian)
Titus is a a typical teen. He lives with his parents and annoying younger brother, likes to hang out with his friends, and is always looking for something exciting to do. During Spring Break, he and his friends decide to go to the Moon. That’s right �" the Moon. Titus lives in a technologically advanced future where people cruise around in “upcars” and have chip implants for the Feed. The Feed is great. It allows the government and advertisers to learn everything about you so they can tell you what you want. It allows you to access information instantly making school basically worthless since everyone already “knows” everything. Titus can’t imagine a better life.

When Titus meets Violet on the Moon he is instantly attracted to her. Violet is very different from all the other girls he knows who only spend their time watching out for the hourly hair style trends and following the story of their favorite show Oh, Wow, Thing. Violet is great, but their relationship doesn’t get off to a good start. At a dance club on the Moon, Titus, Violet, and many others’ Feeds are hacked. They end up spending several days in the hospital for repairs. What Titus doesn’t find out until much later is, Violet’s feed was seriously damaged and most likely can’t be repaired.

M.T. Anderson paints a grim picture of what can happen if a society relies completely on technology. The ease and convenience of instant knowledge from the Feed is to us like searching Google is to our Grandparents. While advertisers constantly bombard people with special offers and great deals in the book, we are rarely without banner ads on the websites we visit. The Feed monitors the purchases of people to better recommend future products. Amazon and Facebook do the same thing in order to recommend things to us. We continually want better and faster. Soon we’ll be so reliant that we won’t be able to do without. Just think. Regular cell phones that don’t require data plans are already becoming harder and harder to find. Soon, even great granny who only needs a cell phone for emergencies will be required to pay $30 for a Smart Phone data plan she’ll never use.

FEED is a book not only about the dangers of complete reliance on technology. It also covers topics such as peer pressure and first love. Titus faces many of the same issues teens of today face, even though he lives in a world where you can take a vacation on the Moon.

I’ve read this book three times. Twice in print and once I listened to the audio version. The audio book is fantastic because it provides the reader with a taste of the Feed. Scattered throughout the book you get to hear advertisements and special news reports about issues the government is facing during the course of this story.
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Bernard Regier, May 1, 2013 (view all comments by Bernard Regier)
Twice during the non-stop reading of this book, I had to flip back to reaffirm the 2003 publishing date. Back then, I would've thought M.T. Anderson's satirical story of a consumeristic dystopia, both imaginative and amusing. The story, seen through the eyes of a teenager who's inklings of a broader, deeper world beyond the artificially enhanced enclosures of future mid-America as well as the late-teen consumer behavioral expectations constantly feeding his thoughts via chip implant, come too late for one coming-of-age in a society that had, long before, subjugated itself to the force-"feeding" of corporate mass-marketing. As it were, I started (and finished) this book on a mid-January day of 2013, a time when nearly every trans-national web retailer (Amazon, eBay, Google, Rakutan, et al) and their subsidiaries where going "all-in" on buyer behavior software and profile databanking, I found this book to be frighteningly insightful and its author; mystically intuitive. I believe I'll purchase the signed edition from the seer himself and send my old copy (via snail mail) to the editorial staff at "Netted by the Webbys". Still reeling while holding a thumb skywards,
--Bernard Regier
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780763662622
Author:
Anderson, M. T.
Publisher:
Candlewick Press (MA)
Author:
Anderson, Matthew Tobin
Subject:
Science Fiction, Fantasy, & Magic
Subject:
Children s-Science Fiction and Fantasy
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
20120731
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
from 9
Language:
English
Pages:
320
Dimensions:
8.25 x 5 x 0.75 in 0.5625 lb
Age Level:
from 14

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Related Subjects

Children's » Awards » Michael L. Printz Award Winners
Children's » Science Fiction and Fantasy » General
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Young Adult » General

Feed Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$6.50 In Stock
Product details 320 pages Candlewick Press (MA) - English 9780763662622 Reviews:
"Review" by , "This satire offers a thought-provoking and scathing indictment that may prod readers to examine the more sinister possibilities of corporate-and media-dominated culture."
"Review" by , "What really puts the teeth in the bite...is Anderson's brilliant satiric vision in the seamless creation of this imagined but believable world. The writing is relentlessly funny, clever in its observations and characters."
"Review" by , "The crystalline realization of this wildly dystopic future carries in it obvious and enormous implications for today's readers — satire at its finest."
"Review" by , "M.T. Anderson has created the perfect device for an ingenious satire of corporate America and our present-day value system....Like those in a funhouse mirror, the reflections the novel shows us may be ugly and distorted, but they are undeniably ourselves."
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