Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Surviving Antarctica: Reality TV 2083

Surviving Antarctica: Reality TV 2083. Andrea White. 2005. 448 pages. [Source: Bought]

First sentence (from the Prologue): What chance did Stephen Michael have of winning his Toss? In the year 2080 there were so many fourteen-year-old kids and so few scholarships. And if he lost--he hated to think about his choices then. Sweat poured down Steve's face as he stared at the poster on the wall in front of him: WELCOME TO THE EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EDU-DICE TOSS, SPONSORED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF ENTERTAINMENT.

Premise/plot: For readers who love both historical fiction and science fiction, have I got a book for you. Surviving Antarctica: Reality TV 2083 is set in the future--a bleak future where the department of education has been replaced with the department of entertainment. Schools are no more, every child is "taught" by the television. Most of the time these "educational programs" are reality TV shows starring adults. But there's something new in the works--a reality TV show--history-based--starring children. The producers are looking to recreate the Antarctic mission of Robert Scott in 1912.

Andrew Morton, Polly Pritchard, Robert Johnson, Billy Kanalski, Grace Untoka--these are the "lucky" kids who've won the opportunity to win big--really BIG. Of course this opportunity for a better future comes at a price--a mostly hidden price. They will be risking their lives; the producers--the powers that be--only care about ratings and not their well-being...

My thoughts: I first read and reviewed this one in October 2006--my very first year of blogging. I loved, loved, loved it. I've been meaning to reread it for ages now. So when I spotted a discarded library copy I knew I had to have it. (Part of me was sad that it would no longer be at the public library--it's a GREAT BOOK. The other part of me was happy because now it would be MINE forever and ever.) I was not disappointed with my reread. It had just been long enough that I was fuzzy on the details. So it was almost like rediscovering the book for the first time.

This one is premise-driven, I won't lie. But the characterization is surprisingly strong for a premise-or-plot-driven action/adventure novel. I cared about all of the characters.

Original audience born circa 1990 to 1995.

© 2019 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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