Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Tesla's Attic (2014)

Tesla's Attic.  (Accelerati #1). Neal Shusterman and Eric Elfman. 2014. Disney-Hyperion. 256 pages. [Source: Library]

Nick was hit by a flying toaster.

Tesla's Attic is certainly different. I haven't decided yet if it's different in a good way or a bad way.

On the one hand, I loved the beginning. I thought it was fun, relatively fun anyway. Nick and his family (his dad and younger brother) have recently moved to Colorado. The move happened primarily because of a house-fire, a fire that killed the mom. No one in the family wants to stay and deal with starting over there, so the cross-country move is welcomed by everyone in the family. Nick discovers tons of junk in the attic at their new house. He decides to hold a garage sale. It happens to be raining. He doesn't expect much of a turn out, not with the weather being what it is. But surprisingly, it's a big hit. Not only are people buying things, they're insisting on paying a lot of money. By the end of the day, he's made some money but is feeling like he's in the twilight zone. Something is not right, he knows it. But what? The premise of this book is that the items in the attic were the creations, the inventions, of Nikola Tesla. The "junk" in the attic is not junk at all. It may look it. But each item does something unexpected. Like the reel-to-reel tape recorder that records WHAT YOU'RE REALLY THINKING AND NOT WHAT YOU'RE ACTUALLY SAYING. So recording conversations is interesting to say the least. The premise was unique and relatively satisfying.

On the other hand, I didn't love the ending so much. That is, by the end of the book, there were a handful of things about the book--the plot--that were bothering me. I found myself enjoying it less and less as I continued reading.

Overall, I would say this is a premise-driven novel with some entertaining scenes, but, it isn't wonderful at characterization and having depth and substance. It is an entertaining enough read, but, it isn't a great read.

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews


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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)
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  • 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.

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