Wednesday, 15 August 2012


We know you are here, our brothers and sisters . . .
Pressia barely remembers the Detonations or much about life during the Before. In her sleeping cabinet behind the rubble of an old barbershop where she lives with her grandfather, she thinks about what is lost-how the world went from amusement parks, movie theaters, birthday parties, fathers and mothers . . . to ash and dust, scars, permanent burns, and fused, damaged bodies. And now, at an age when everyone is required to turn themselves over to the militia to either be trained as a soldier or, if they are too damaged and weak, to be used as live targets, Pressia can no longer pretend to be small. Pressia is on the run.
Burn a Pure and Breathe the Ash . . .
There are those who escaped the apocalypse unmarked. Pures. They are tucked safely inside the Dome that protects their healthy, superior bodies. Yet Partridge, whose father is one of the most influential men in the Dome, feels isolated and lonely. Different. He thinks about loss-maybe just because his family is broken; his father is emotionally distant; his brother killed himself; and his mother never made it inside their shelter. Or maybe it's his claustrophobia: his feeling that this Dome has become a swaddling of intensely rigid order. So when a slipped phrase suggests his mother might still be alive, Partridge risks his life to leave the Dome to find her.
When Pressia meets Partridge, their worlds shatter all over again.
Jullianna Baggot has created a speculative young-adult novel that doesn't lack in imaginative content.  While at times dialogue may jar, and aspects of the plot fall into familiar YA territory, there is still plenty of features within the text that redeem Pure and set it apart from other offerings in the sub genre.

What stood out for me was that Baggot doesn't talk down to her YA audience.  She explains about the possibility of a nuclear war, and provides an option of what the aftermath could be like, but the only problem with Pure is that there is too much talking and not enough action. Maybe, as part of a trilogy, the second instalment will be more action led now that the damaged world both inside and out of the Dome has been established.

No comments:

Post a Comment