Jan 22, 2005
The House of the Scorpion, Nancy Farmer
I think this book is so great because so many times when you read sci-fi it is too far removed, too different, compared to real life today, and this book is not that way at all. What I mean is, the elements that make this a sci-fi book don't take over the whole book and become more important than the plot itself. And the plot in this book is really great. There are clones, there are zombies, there is an entirely new country carved out between the US and Mexico, but it is all too believable (read: frightening). All the people act how people generally act: some are evil, some are wonderful, many try really hard to be good but are scared or lack the courage to stand up to people. You really grow into these complicated characters.
My only problem with this book is when Matt finally escapes Opium. Even though I could tell something else was going to happen (there were a lot of pages left to read), I was not ready for him to be kidnapped into an orphanage that worked kids and beat them,etc. By that time everything had been so terrible I was really just ready for him to be united with Maria, the end everyone lives happily ever after. Although I can see that by going through that experience, Matt grows up. He really was somewhat selfish and poor me (although you can hardly blame him) before he inspired the other orphans and everyone works together to break out. So it was needed as a story point, but I was tired of being anxious about what was going to happen next by that time.