Thursday, October 04, 2012

Rootless (YA)

Rootless. Chris Howard. 2012. Scholastic. 336 pages.

They figured me too young for a tree builder. I could see it in their eyes.

Rootless is a great example of a not-for-me book. I was not the right audience for this one, but you might be. If you enjoy dark horror stories, then this one may be just right for you. Banyan, our narrator, is a young man struggling to survive. Like his father before him, he is a tree builder; he builds artificial trees, artificial forests.

In this futuristic world, much has changed, and nothing has changed for the better. This is explored, to a certain degree, throughout the novel, as the mystery is revealed and readers come to learn about how the world is and how it came to be that way.

I would say this book is all about surviving, but, that wouldn't exactly be true. It isn't necessarily about avoiding all risks in order to survive. Banyan, our hero, even seeks out danger at times because he wants answers, he wants the truth. He has seen a picture of his father chained to a tree, a REAL tree, and he wants to know more. On his journey to "the truth" he'll meet a handful of characters, some he'll come to care about a lot. He even finds a love interest.

Rootless is incredibly dark and bleak. The world-building is strong, but it is so very haunting and violent. For some, this book may be a great read.

The back cover description: There aren't many books left. People burned most of them to keep warm during the Darkness. And after the Darkness, there were no new books because there was no more paper. The locusts had come. And there were no more trees.

Read Rootless
  • If you enjoy post-apocalypse fiction
  • If you enjoy survival/action/adventure stories
  • If you like horror novels or thrillers

© 2012 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

If you're interested in sending me a review copy of your book, I'm happy to hear from you. Email me at laney_po AT yahoo DOT com.

You should know several things before you contact me:

1) I do not guarantee a review of your book. I am just agreeing to consider it for review.
2) I give all books at least fifty pages.
3) I am not promising anyone (author or publisher) a positive review in exchange for a review copy. That's not how I work.
4) In all of my reviews I strive for honesty. My reviews are my opinions--so yes, they are subjective--you should know my blog will feature both negative and positive reviews.
5) I do not guarantee that I will get to your book immediately. I've got so many books I'm trying to read and review, I can't promise to get to any one book in a given time frame.
6) Emailing me every other week to see if I've read your book won't help me get to it any faster. Though if you want to email me to check and see if it arrived safely, then that's fine!

Authors, publishers. I am interested in interviewing authors and participating in blog tours. (All I ask is that I receive a review copy of the author's latest book beforehand so the interview will be productive. If the book is part of a series, I'd like to review the whole series.) Contact me if you're interested.

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