Friday, August 31, 2012
Eden's Root by Rachel Fisher
Eden's Root by Rachel Fisher
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Synopsis from Goodreads:
The year is 2033 and the world hovers on the edge of explosion as unexplained crop deaths lead to severe global food shortages. In the United States, the Sickness is taking lives slowly, creeping its way into every family. Fi Kelly has already faced the Sickness in her own family, toughening her beyond her years. But a shocking confession from her dying father will push her toughness to its absolute limits. Saddled with an impossible secret and the mission of saving her little sister, Fi sets out to transform herself into the warrior that she must become to survive the coming collapse. Along the way, she will discover that evil can be accidental and that love can be intentional.
~I received this book for free from the author in exchange for an honest review~
Well, doesnt this book just really make you think about things a little differently!?
Eden's Root is a dystopian/sci-fi (though, in the authors words, not the robots and space sort of sci-fi. But science based fiction)set around 30 years in the future. It's based on the idea that our food has been genetically modified ALOT over the past century or two. Nothing is as it was back in the 1800's- food is all crossbred and pumped full of chemicals to make things bigger, better, taste different, grow faster. In Eden's Root, all this genetic modification has caught up with us, and things are starting to go pear shaped. Crops are beginning to die before they can be harvested and Cancer of all forms (or The Sickness, as it becomes known throughout the book) is killing people at a crippling rate and some believe it is caused by the food.
13 year old, Fi Kelly's father, is one of those believers. On his deathbed, he tells Fi that the world as she knows it is coming to an end.That soon, there will not be enough food to go around. The only glimmer of hope for Fi, is Eden. A colony sealed off from the rest of the world, that her scientist father helped to create. In Eden, they are growing heirloom crops, or 'True Food" as Fi comes to call it. These True foods come from unmodified seeds, from hundreds of years before. Fi and her family can be saved from the famines and the sickness that are sure to come, but first, they have to make it to Eden.
Fi spends the first few months after her fathers death, training to become a fighter. Learning to hunt and gather. Preparing herself for the trek to Eden and this new world. Armed with her fathers journals and his dying words, she makes her plans. And when the events her father foretold start to come true, and soldiers roll into town, locking up food stores and riots begin, Fi knows its time to leave. To find Eden.
Eden's root is told mostly from Fi's point of view, though we also have chapters from Sean (Fi's best friend and side kick), and Asher (who remains in the city, whilst everyone else is fleeing). From Fi and Sean's points of view, we follow them as they travel from their home in search of Eden. Picking up others along they way, whom they deem fit to join their family. Going on raids for suplies, hunting and gathering, trying to keep an ever growing amount of people alive while food is largely unavailable and everyone is out for themselves.
My thoughts: Firstly, this hits a bit too close to home for me. It is not really a stretch of the imagination, to think that this could actually happen. We really do mess with food ALOT, under the guise of making things better, but are we really? Im not a scientist, i dont know the answer to that, but this book certainly makes you think about it. Love it when a book actually makes you think.
Fi starts out in this book at 13 years old, and is 16 by the end of it, so the book spans quite a period of time. I found it hard to like Fi. She is an extremely determined, strong willed, gutsy leader and i found that hard to swallow, being she was a 13 year old girl. She leads a large group, which includes many adults, including her mother, and they all just follow her, pretty much without question. Yes, she trained to be a warrior for a few months, and yes, this new world would make a young girl grow up quickly, but i found her "voice" to be of someone alot older than 13. Like maybe someone of 40. If she'd started out at age 18 i think i would have had an easier time accepting her. It is explained many times, why she is the way she is (and there are ALOT of reasons in her past), I just found it a bit hard to buy. But this is really my only complaint in the whole book.
Its a very easy read, the book flows well, without many slow spots.There is the occasional typo, but it wasnt enough to be distracting. Theres plenty of action, and an a little bit of a romance (even an almost love triangle). All the supporting characters are likable, and i would have loved to have seen some more from Asher's point of view when he was still in the city. I think an ebook novella from his point of view would be amazing!(hint hint Rachel!)
Overall, an enjoyable read, and a really promising debut novel from Rachel Fisher. This probably wasnt quite a 4 star read for me, but it definitely deserves more than 3 stars. So i give it 3.75, because i like to be precise :) I'd recommend this to any dystopian YA fan. The sequel is already out, so im looking forward to reading that sometime soon. Thanks Rachel, for asking me to review your book :)
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