Entries tagged with “Dystopian”.

Win a signed copy of Renegade! Details at the end of this post.


Chapter One

 Sacrifices must be made for the greater good.

—Citizen’s Social Code, Volume VI

My life is just about perfect.

Every morning Mother has the Maids wake me at precisely ten. Then it’s time for a light breakfast followed by a mandatory visit with my Therapist. It’s nice to have someone to talk with.

After, I am free to do as I wish until it’s time to perform one of the duties Mother has requested of me. This morning I sit in my garden, quietly doing my cross-stitching. the garden is so peaceful in the morning, especially when the sea life outside the glass dome passes by.

The Surface could never compare. Not that I’ve ever seen the Surface. It is forbidden, even for me.

Which is fine. My life is just about perfect.

Excerpt copyright © 2012 J.A. Souders

About the book:


Since the age of three, sixteen-year-old Evelyn Winters has been trained to be Daughter of the People in the underwater utopia known as Elysium. Selected from hundreds of children for her ideal genes, all her life she’s thought that everything was perfect; her world. Her people. The Law.

But when Gavin Hunter, a Surface Dweller, accidentally stumbles into their secluded little world, she’s forced to come to a startling realization: everything she knows is a lie. Her memories have been altered. Her mind and body aren’t under her own control. And the person she knows as Mother is a monster.

Together with Gavin she plans her escape, only to learn that her own mind is a ticking time bomb… and Mother has one last secret that will destroy them all.

What people are saying:

“Grim, vicious, riveting. Renegade is a haunting, unforgettable debut.”–Ann Aguirre, USA Today bestselling author of ENCLAVE and OUTPOST

“RENEGADE is a dark tale of deceit, with twists that will keep you turning the pages, and an ending that will have you on the edge of your seat.”–Lisa Desrochers, author of PERSONAL DEMONS

“Deliciously creepy and filled with psychological twists, Renegade kept me on the edge of my seat until the very last page.”—Kristen Simmons, author of ARTICLE 5

Released: November 13, 2012

About the author:

J.A. Souders was born in the heartland with an overactive imagination and an over abundance of curiosity that was always getting her into trouble. She first began writing at the age of 13, when she moved to Florida and not only befriended the monsters under the bed, but created worlds for them to play together.

Because she never grew up, she decided she’d put her imaginary friends to work and started writing. She still lives in the land of sunshine and palm trees with her husband and their two children. Visit her at www.jasouders.com.


Jessica has been kind enough to contribute a signed copy of Renegade for a giveaway!

The contest is open in the US and Canada, and ends on January 9th at midnight EST.

Just comment on this post to enter.

For extra entries:

-Be a follower on Twitter or like us on Facebook [+1 entry each].

-Link to this contest on Twitter, Facebook, etc. [+1 entry per each link].

Please list your extra entries in the comments.

Good luck and happy reading!


Win a copy of Nerve! Details at the end of this post.


It took three days of waiting, but at four a.m. on a Sunday, the street in front of her home finally emptied of all Watchers. Maybe even crazies needed to sleep once in a while. She could use some rest too, but more than that, she craved freedom. It had been almost a week since she’d left her house.

She scribbled a note for her parents, threw a pile of gear into her car, and sped off, peeking into the rearview mirror all the way out of town and throughout the two-hour drive to the Shenandoah. The countless times she’d ridden these roads with her family had been filled with games, singing, videos, and sometimes just daydreaming, but this time, it was with a rising sense of panic.

Ignoring years of training by her parents to check in with a ranger when she reached the park, she left her car near the most deserted trailhead she could find and took off on a path where the foliage was on the verge of being overgrown. By early afternoon, she’d have to settle on a spot to set up camp. For now, she just wanted to disappear into the greenery. If she could evade the Watchers for a little while longer, this greenery would bring her some measure of peace, at least for a few days.

Her backpack weighed heavy on her shoulders as she pounded up the rocky hillside, pushing past ferns, and catching the occasional drops of dew that lingered on the leaves. The rushing sound up ahead spurred her on with the promise of a waterfall. It would be a blessed distraction from the constant rumination that had taken over her thoughts for the past twenty-three days. Damn game.

Excerpt copyright © Jeanne Ryan

About the book:

When Vee is picked to be a player in NERVE, an anonymous game of dares broadcast live online, she discovers that the game knows her. They tempt her with prizes taken from her ThisIsMe page and team her up with the perfect boy, sizzling-hot Ian. At first it’s exhilarating–Vee and Ian’s fans cheer them on to riskier dares with higher stakes. But the game takes a twisted turn. Suddenly they’re playing all or nothing, and the prize may be their lives.

 What people are saying:

“[R]eaders will find themselves flipping madly to the very last page.”–Kirkus

“Ryan’s story is thought-provoking and unsettling…the ending goes off with a bang and a twist.”–Publishers Weekly

Released: September 13, 2012

About the author:

Jeanne Ryan has lived all over the world, raised in a family with eleven brothers and sisters. She spent her early childhood in Hawaii and the rest of her growing-up years trying to figure out a way to get back there, with stops in South Korea , Michigan and Germany along the way. Before writing fiction, she tried her hand at many things, including wargame simulation and youth development research. But she decided it was much more fun to work on stories than statistics. These days, she still loves Hawaii , but has found her home under the moody skies of the Pacific Northwest. You can visit her at www.jeanneryan.com.


Jeanne has been kind enough to contribute a copy of Nerve for a giveaway!

Just comment on this post to enter.

For extra entries:

-Be a follower on Twitter [+1 entry].

-Link to this contest on Twitter, Facebook, etc. [+1 entry per each link].

Please list your extra entries in the comments.

The contest is open in the US only, and ends on September 26th at midnight EST.

Good luck and happy reading!

Win a copy of Article 5! Details at the end of this post.

BETH and Ryan were holding hands. It was enough to risk a formal citation for indecency, and they knew better, but I didn’t say anything. Curfew rounds wouldn’t begin for another two hours, and freedom was stolen in moments like these.

“Slow down, Ember,” Ryan called.

Instead I walked faster, pulling away from our pack.

“Leave her alone,” I heard Beth whisper. My face heated as I realized how I must look: not like a conscientious friend who was minding her own business, but like a bitter third wheel who couldn’t stand seeing other couples happy. Which wasn’t true— mostly.

 Sheepishly, I fell into step beside Beth.

My best friend was tall for a girl, with an explosion of dark freckles centered at her nose and a cap of squiggly red hair that was untamable on chilly days like this one. She traded Ryan’s arm for mine— which, if I was honest, did make me feel a little safer— and without a word, we danced on our tiptoes around the massive cracks in the sidewalk, just like we’d done since the fourth grade.

When the concrete path succumbed to gravel, I raised the front of my too-long khaki skirt so the hem didn’t drag in the dust. I hated this skirt. The matching button- up top was so boxy and stiff that it made even busty Beth look fl at as an ironing board. School uniforms were part of President Scarboro’s new Moral Statute—one of many that had taken effect after the War—mandating that appearances comply with gender roles. I didn’t know what gender they’d been aiming for with this outfit. Clearly it wasn’t female.

Excerpt copyright © 2012 Kristen Simmons

About the book:

New York, Los Angeles, and Washington, DC have been abandoned.

The Bill of Rights has been revoked, and replaced with the Moral Statutes.

There are no more police—instead, there are soldiers. There are no more fines for bad behavior—instead, there are arrests, trials and maybe worse. People who get arrested don’t usually come back.

Seventeen-year-old Ember Miller is old enough to remember that things weren’t always this way. Living with her rebellious single mother, it’s hard to forget that people weren’t always arrested for reading the wrong books or staying out after dark. That life in the United States used to be different.

In the three years since the war ended, Ember has perfected the art of keeping a low profile. She knows how to get the things she needs—like food stamps and hand-me-down clothes—and how to pass the random home inspections by the Federal Bureau of Reformation. Her life is as close to peaceful as circumstances allow. That is, until her mother is arrested for noncompliance with Article 5 of the Moral Statutes. And what’s worse, one of the arresting officers is none other than Chase Jennings…the only boy Ember has ever loved.

What people are saying:

“Kristen Simmons’ Article 5 is a gripping, atmospheric story of survival. Alongside a fierce depiction of oppressive government, Simmons has created a bleak portrait of an America lost. I could hardly put it down. Ember Miller and Chase Jennings can be my post-apocalyptic wingmen anytime.”—Kendare Blake, author of Anna Dressed in Blood

“Subversion. Defiance. Desperate, struggling humanity in the face of state-sponsored tyranny. This book was engrossing, unpredictable and thoroughly REAL. Loved it.”Jay Kristoff, author of Stormdancer

“Fast-paced, emotional and nail-bitingingly intense, Article 5 gripped me from page one and didn’t let me go once.”--Parajunkee.com

“There are only a few books that managed to keep me up at night this year, and ARTICLE 5 is one of them. A MUST read for any fan of the dystopian genre…even if you are not, it’s a must read anyways.”–Book Reader Addicts

Released: January 31, 2012

About the author:

Kristen Simmons has a master’s degree in social work and is an advocate for mental health. She lives with her husband Jason and their precious greyhound Rudy in Tampa, Florida. Visit her at www.kristensimmonsbooks.com.


Kristen has been kind enough to contribute a copy of Article 5 for a giveaway!

Just comment on this post to enter.

For extra entries:

-Be a follower of this site (just click “Join this site”) or a follower on Twitter [+1 entry each].

-Link to this contest on Twitter, Facebook, etc. [+1 entry per each link].

Please list your extra entries in the comments.

The contest is open in the US only, and ends on February 22nd at midnight EST.

Good luck and happy reading!

Win some signed Memento Nora bookmarks! Details at the end of this post.


Nothing to See Here

Therapeutic Statement 42-03282028-11

Subject: James, Nora Emily, 15

Facility: Hamilton Detention Center TFC-42

I’m about to forget everything I’m going to tell you. So I’m only going to mention the parts that matter. To you, at least. The rest I’m going to keep to myself, for my self. For that old Nora James. The obedient daughter. The popular girl. The oblivious consumer. The one who really owns this cute little charm bracelet with the silver purse dangling from it. The one you want to keep around.

It all started a few weeks ago. It was a glossy day. No school. Downtown was having a sale to celebrate two quiet weeks in a row. And Mom was in one of her good moods—her post-TFC mood—and generous with the credit. A very glossy day.

We bought strappy sandals at Macy’s, a cute leather jacket at Bergdorf’s, and ice cream, low-fat chocolate mint, at Burkes. Then we were going to Fahrenheit Books for coffee and a new romance novel for Mom. We were doing our part to prime our feeble economy, as Dad likes to say, while the security patrol watched over us from their machine-gun nest atop Saks.

Excerpt© 2011 Angie Smibert


About the book:

Nora, the popular girl and happy consumer, witnesses a horrific bombing on a shopping trip with her mother. In Nora’s near-future world, terrorism is so commonplace that she can pop one little white pill to forget and go on like nothing ever happened. However, when Nora makes her first trip to a Therapeutic Forgetting Clinic, she learns what her mother, a frequent forgetter, has been frequently forgetting. Nora secretly spits out the pill and holds on to her memories. The memory of the bombing as well as her mother’s secret and her budding awareness of the world outside her little clique make it increasingly difficult for Nora to cope. She turns to two new friends, each with their own reasons to remember, and together they share their experiences with their classmates through an underground comic. They soon learn, though, they can’t get away with remembering

What people are saying:

“…the themes of inquiry and fighting back will resonate with young and old.”–School Library Journal

“… fuses the politically charged projections of Anderson’s Feed and Doctorow’s Little Brother with the breathtakingly personal implications of selective amnesia, resulting in a multi-threaded plot that manages to be both complex and comfortably easy to follow (in other words, enjoyable for sci-fi fans and newbies alike). The fast pace encourages readers to fall headfirst into a gripping suspense-adventure ride, letting the thematic issues simmer beneath the surface while they are carried away on the surprise twists, memorable supporting characters, and interpersonal dynamics (including a romance) that are absorbing but never melodramatic.”—The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

Released: April 1, 2011

About the author:

Angie was born in Blacksburg, a once sleepy college town in the mountains of Southwest Virginia. She grew up thinking she wanted to be a veterinarian; organic chemistry had other ideas. But she always had stories in her head. Eventually, after a few degrees and few cool jobs—including a 10-year stint at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center—she wrote some of those stories down. Angie has published many short stories, for both adults and teens. Her first novel, MEMENTO NORA, will be hitting the shelves in April 1, 2011. You can visit her at www.angiesmibert.com and learn more about her book at www.mementonora.com.


Angie has been kind enough to contribute some signed Mementor Nora bookmarks for a giveaway!

To enter simply leave a comment on this post.

For extra entries:

-Be a follower of this site (just click “Join this site”) or a follower on Twitter [+1 entry each].

-Link to this contest on Twitter, Facebook, etc. [+1 entry per each link].

Please list your extra entries in the comments.

The contest is open in the US and Canada and ends on April 13th at midnight EST.

Good luck and happy reading!

“Nina, look.” Sandy jabbed me in the ribs.

I glanced up at the AV screen expecting to see the latest vert of back-to-school fashion for sixteens.

“No, there.” Sandy jerked my arm, bringing my attention to the doorway.

Four guys approached us, lurching and swaying through the moving express. They sat across the aisle, immediately crowding together in a knot. A low buzz of unintelligible words, accompanied by the occasional rowdy snort, rose from their cluster.

“They’re eighteen,” she whispered. “I bet it’s the one in the middle’s birthday. He’s cute!” She wriggled in her seat.

By the way he kept admiring the tattoo on his wrist and fingering the Band-Aid behind his ear, where his GPS had been, I knew she was right. I involuntarily touched my own tracker. The tiny grain-sized pellet embedded beneath the skin barely registered on my fingertips. What would it be like to be able to go someplace where you were untraceable?

Before my thoughts went any further down that path, Sandy said, “They’re going into the city to celebrate. I wish–“

“No, you don’t.” My stomach turned at the thought of eighteenth celebrations. We’d heard all about them, particularly the Angel affair. I quickly blocked the images from my mind.

Excerpt © 2011 Julia Karr

About the book:

In the year 2150, being a girl isn’t necessarily a good thing, especially when your sixteenth (read sex-teenth) birthday is fast approaching. That in itself would be enough to make anyone more than a little nuts, what with the tattoo and all – but Nina Oberon’s life has taken a definite turn for the worse. Her mother is brutally stabbed and left for dead. Before dying, she entrusts a secret book to Nina, telling her to deliver it to Nina’s father. But, first Nina has to find him; since for fifteen years he’s been officially dead. Complications arise when she rescues Sal, a mysterious, and ultra hot guy. He seems to like Nina, but also seems to know more about her father than he’s letting on. Then there’s that murderous ex-government agent who’s stalking her, and just happens to be her little sister’s dad.

What people are saying:

“In her unsettling debut, Karr depicts a sex-obsessed future where women are the perpetual victims of predatory marketing, and other societal ills seen in our present…taken to terrifying ends. …there’s no doubt this well-written, accessible sci-fi thriller will provoke discussion.”–Booklist

“Gender politics and sexual awareness play prominent roles in Karr’s thoughtprovoking dystopian debut. A solid, enjoyable story.”–Publisher’s Weekly

Released: January 6, 2011 from Speak/Penguin

About the author:

Julia Karr was born in Indiana and moved to Chicago when she was fifteen. After the initial culture shock of going from quiet, small-town living to Carl Sandburg’s “stormy, husky, brawling” metropolis, she fell madly in love with the city. Her debut novel, XVI, is set in the future in the city she still loves — Chicago. Visit Julia online at http://juliakarr.com

Win a copy of The Line! Details at the end of this post.

It seemed to Rachel that she had always lived on The Property, though this wasn’t true.  Her mother, Vivian, said they moved there when she was three years old, but Rachel didn’t remember.  To her, The Property was home.  She felt as comfortable there as she did in her own skin.  But she knew that for most people, The Property was too close to the section of the National Border Defense System known as the Line.

The National Border Defense System enclosed the entire Unified States.  The section called the Line was only a small part of it, but because of its history it was infamous, at least locally.  Strange things were supposed to happen near the Line; dangerous things.  Even though there hadn’t been a Crossing Storm in over forty years, people still thought of the Line as a bad place to be near.  There were whispers about Away—the territory on the other side of the Line.  There were whispers about the Others.

Rachel wasn’t afraid.  After all, she spent a lot of her time in the greenhouse that was all the way at the back of The Property, right next to the Line.  Away was clearly visible from the greenhouse windows.  Rachel had gazed countless hours out those windows at Away, and she had never seen anything strange over there at all.  Just the same meadows and trees that were on the U.S. side of the Line.

Technically, Rachel wasn’t supposed to be in the greenhouse.  Ms. Elizabeth Moore, the owner of The Property, grew orchids there, which she shipped to the cities to sell.  Vivian had always cautioned Rachel to stay away from the greenhouse; she worried that Rachel might be a bother to Ms. Moore, or that she might break something.  Rachel tried to do whatever she could to make things easier for her mother, but the greenhouse had seemed magical to her from the first time she saw it—so hushed, so peaceful and beautiful.  The air was warm and soft, and a gentle light filtered in through the glass, illuminating the lush emerald hues of the orchids’ leaves.  Their exotic blooms vied for Rachel’s attention, some offering flashes of intense colors in bold shapes; others, pale and delicate, coquettishly inviting a closer inspection.

Rachel couldn’t resist.  She hid somewhere in the greenhouse almost every day when she was little, happy among the flowers.  She was careful to stay out of Ms. Moore’s sight, of course.  She would have been careful even if she hadn’t been warned not to bother her.  Ms. Moore was old, and not old in a grandmotherly, “here are some cookies” way; she was quite forbidding.  Rachel was almost scared of her.  But being in the greenhouse was worth the risk.

Excerpt © 2010 Teri Hall

About the book:

In the not so distant future…

Rachel lives with her mother on The Property. The good thing about living there is that it’s far from the city where the oppressive government is most active. The bad thing, at least to most people, is that it’s close to the Line—an uncrossable section of the National Border Defense System, an invisible barrier that encloses the entire country.

She can see the Line from the greenhouse windows, but she is forbidden to go near it. Across the Line is Away, and though Rachel has heard many whispers about the dangers there, she’s never really believed the stories. Until the day she hears a recording that could only have come from across the Line.

It’s a voice asking for help.

Who sent the message? What is her mother hiding? And to what lengths will Rachel go in order to do what she thinks is right?

What people are saying:

“Hall nicely embeds the history of this repressive future world in a tense narrative that will leave readers intrigued with the mysterious Away. Rachel is an appealing character, and her young voice and the straightforward language make this a good choice for introducing young readers to the science-fiction genre.”–Booklist Reviews

“Without any hint at current politics, she encourages young readers to think about the tension between freedom and security while keeping them engrossed in a suspenseful story. Well done indeed.” (Science fiction. 10 & up)–Kirkus Reviews

“Hall’s compelling writing transports the reader to a time and place that seems all too close to now.”–Deborah L. Dubois, Voya Reviews

“Debut author Hall’s clear, controlled prose builds burgeoning tension while unraveling carefully conceived plot twists, which address themes of totalitarianism, nuclear war, and xenophobia. Dimensional characters and compelling questions unveiled at the dangling finish will have readers awaiting the next installment.”(Ages 12–up.)–Publishers Weekly

Released: March 2010

About the author:

Teri Hall lives in Washington State, and likes to write books. To learn more about Teri and her books, and to download a 30-plus page curriculum guide, visit www.terihall.com.


Teri has been kind enough to contribute a copy of The Line for a giveaway!

To enter simply leave a comment on this post.

For extra entries:

-Be a follower of this site (just click “Join this site”) or a follower on Twitter [+1 entry each].

-Link to this contest on Twitter, Facebook, etc. [+1 entry per each link].

Please list your extra entries in the comments.

The contest is open in the US and Canada and ends on January 26th at midnight EST.

Good luck and happy reading!