Following are my three reasons for giving this such a low rating One, the characters are vehicles for exposing the problem of oil scarcity a noble goal but it is so stolidly done that it is hard to like or care for them Over and over the reader is subjected to the characters laments over the rising price of lipstick, gasoline, everything under the sun, instead of giving names to the main characters they could have been labeled, average jock teen, angry young man, and shy girl with greasy hair Dullsville and it makes it hard to differentiate them whenever something happened The characters spend most of their time wandering around hot, sweaty and worried, but the story never really does much to motivate them to do something.
Two, frequent interruptions by news reports At first sight, the news reports were a clever choice The news articles speak of rising unrest, oil scarcity and the game of thrones that is happening as the world fights over the last oil rich reserves But instead of using the news articles as a nice info dump so that your characters don t have to ghost around saying stuff like, I hear there could be a war with which could lead to terrible So clumsy and a complete waste of valuable dialogue time Teens at school, crushing on their schoolmates, hanging out with friends, mostly oblivious to the rising storm would have been believable than teens discussing politics and world events with each other while walking to class.
Three, Unsatisfying ending Naturally, I can t tell you what happens at the end, that would be a major spoiler, but by the time I got to the end of the book, I was hoping for a good ending, or at least a fun cliffhanger that would lead into the next book but instead its just the end.
If you are looking for a dystopian or a everything goes to hell in a fashionably rustic basket novel check out Gone, How I live Now, The Carbon Diaries, Matched, The Giver, The Handsmaids Tale or Life as We Knew It If you absolutely must read this, get it from the library.
The blurb on the back, and the cover drew me in, but there wasn t much else to like about this book The plot sounded interesting, 10 years from now and the planet is running out of fossil fuels No gas No oil No driving means supermarkets are Empty No medicines No electricity.
The main characters in this book, Tom, Gwen, and Niki are worried about who is going out with whom, than how they are going to survive Was a love triangle necessary in this book Their reactions to things, like their possible starvation and the destruction of their society, is almost non existent Of utmost importance is whether they should go to the yearly bonfire Really As if the dire situation of the planets dwindling supply of fossil fuels, and a war that breaks out between the U.
S and Venezuela over oil supplies isn t enough, the author decides to throw in a super hurricane caused by global warming into the plot After the cover, this book ran quickly out of gas Hitch a ride on some other book, this one won t take you anywhere.
Tof verhaal over een wereld zonder olie Een zeer beangstigende doch realistische toekomstvisie Jammer van de liedesdriehoek, maar de krantenartikels tussen de hoofdstukken maken een hoop goed De laatste pagina vond ik ietwat belerend, maar desondanks heb ik zeker genoten van dit boek Empty had van mij nog veel langer mogen duren Mijn complete recensie lees je op Oog op de Toekomst.
The book was really realistic and true Somehow maybe in the near future gas prices may go up to 90 per gallon We may run out of fossil fuels, and a drip of gas may mean a lot Also this book was very informational I learned a lot from this book about this world.
I had high hopes when I picked up this book The plot scenario sounded interesting no matter what side of the green debate one stands on, I don t think anyone can deny that oil will run out some day, whether it s in the near future or a few generations from now and I ve grown used to young adult books dealing with dystopian, apocalyptic or just plain disaster plots in an intelligent and decently written way.
So, yes, Empty held a lot of promise for me Unfortunately what it turned out to be was a book that read like a lecture aimed at ten year olds or perhaps eight year olds , certainly not young adults although the half hearted attempt at romance and characters in their later teens seemed to indicate otherwise The language and narrative style were so simplistic it was hard to get truly interested and the lecturing, the message came through so hard and clear that it occasionally nearly turned me off and I m by and large a supporter of the ideas being promoted here.
That s not to say the book was all bad it was a quick and at times not completely dull read, and the characters, while not exactly engaging or with a huge amount of personality, weren t off putting Might be a decent read for a child pre teen who is interested in saving the planet and life without oil, I suppose.
Are you an aspiring author who lacks confidence that your manuscript can cut the mustard with a publisher read Empty and feel your confidence in your work become FULL.
If this can get published, then surely you can I ve always lived under the assumption that an author submits a manuscript and then the editor reads it and suggests revisions I get the impression that in this case, they ran spell check and decided it was good to go.
Our local Borders went belly and so they had a several weeks clearance sale I usually never buy books unless I know exactly what I m buying But I couldn t resist picking up a few random titles at discount prices This book looked intriguing sitting in the YA fiction section at 60% off Maybe the fact that there were roughly 50 other available copies should have tipped me off that this was not a sought after volume.
It s set about ten years in the future, and the citizens of the earth are coming to the realization that the world s oil supply is almost gone I m not really a huge environmentalist or anything, but it could make for an interesting enough story, right I think the author simply tried to accomplish too much in 250 pages To really make her idea work, it probably needed to be a three book series But she was probably worried that once they figured out she wasn t a fiction writer, they wouldn t publish a second or third book So it all got crammed into one book.
It s told from the point of view of three teens in a New England town There s Tom, your garden variety teen boy who s handsome, muscular, and sensitive There s Niki, your stereotypical hottie cheerleader who has been spoiled by her parents And there s Gwen, the Goth chick with black hair who lives on the edge and is a little bit ahead of the curve when it comes to smart energy There s also a Hispanic kid who lives in a trailer I forget his name we ll call him Carlos for the purposes of this review.
In the book, oil prices are around 100 a gallon A bunch of teens get in an all out brawl because the rival school gets caught siphoning gas from their cars Gwen s house burns down becasue her rebel brother is storing black market fuel in milk cartons Niki s dad goes on a rampage and shatters an antique chair and throws it in the fire place because he can t get a job in the distressed economy And then things get real bad when the superhurricane hits.
The book is basically green energy propaganda poorly disguised as fiction It reads like a pamphlet with quotation marks and characters randomly inserted to make it seem like a story There s the romantic subplots Carlos likes Gwen Gwen likes Tom Tom likes Niki Niki likes herself As the book progresses, Niki starts to like Tom but is worried that Tom might like Gwen She also might still like her old boyfriend after the high oil prices mellow him out Tom starts to like Gwen, but is worried that Carlos and Gwen have something going Gwen likes Carlos, but only as a friend, and tells him as much It s not really clear how that whole situation resolves itself, although we re led to believe that Tom and Gwen end up together But the whole thing is so boring that you don t really care.
This book has continuity errors galore And I m a stickler for continuity If you re too lazy to write your book so that it makes sense, why should I bother to listen to any of the ideas you put forth The good news is, you ll be glad to know that everything ends up just fine in the future after we run out of oil So no worries NOTE I skipped adding a spoiler alert, because you don t care Trust me.
I ve already given this book away to the YW garage sale, and some other sucka probably paid good money for it or maybe they didn t and it s on a Goodwill shelf somewhere.
S has invaded Venezuela in a fruitless bid to corner the last drops of the petro economy Not only are people not driving, people are unable to buy any petroleum products including cosmetics, pens, crayons, and a thousand other everyday items More chillingly, the grocery stores are empty, children are hungry, and America is sinking into anarchy Empty follows the experience of some high school students in an east coast town while giving updates on the world s descent into chaos Teenagers used to worrying about football and dating are now struggling to survive The survivalist aspect of the book is what impressed me the most and, I confess made me wonder how I would survive and provide for my family in such a disaster Where would I find food How would I get fresh water The writing itself in Empty is not the best, however, its premise and the story it tells are definitely worth reading.
The writing is quite straightforward, the characters are consistent, what sings in this novel is the theme Wake up We are, for all intents and purposes, out of oil it is non renewable When the near east, Canada and Alaska run out of oil the US declares war on Argentina to force opening of new oil fields for our use Bolivia, holder of lithium, joins Argentina against the US At home, 17 year old Gwen is living under the radar, her mom split years ago and she and her older brother Luke are trying to keep Gwen out of social services keen eye When domestic oil is directed to the war effort and all pumps are empty, social chaos erupts The cascading effect of our reliance on petroleum is laid bare in the events of the novel This is a hopeful wake up call sent out at the midnight hour to anyone who will listen.
Review also posted at Briar Rose ReadsI must confess I am a bit obsessed with dystopian and post apocalyptic YA fiction For me, as with most people, it probably started with The Hunger Games, and grew from there Soon after reading The Hunger Games, I found Carrie Ryan s haunting, claustrophobic The Forest of Hands and Teeth, and I was hooked Though those two series are very different, they share a kind of raw desperation that I found beautiful, and I ve been searching for of it ever since.
I started Empty with high hopes The cover is well done, and the premise sounded timely in a compelling way I think we re all aware that our connected modern lives are powered by a non renewable resource, and I was excited to find a YA book addressing what might happen once that resource starts running out.
Unfortunately, I was disappointed I tried to like the book, but its flaws were numerous and glaring enough to keep me from getting absorbed in the story The writing seems stilted and amateurish, and the characters frequently spout awkward, paragraph long info dumps So many anvils are dropped that I m surprised I finished the book without a concussion I love books in which the message is a organic part of the story in Empty the message has been shoe horned in as frequently and loudly as possible.
Then there were the characters, all too often flat and clich The worst offender was the stereotypical cheerleader, whose character growth moment was deciding it was okay to wear glasses instead of contacts Not even because she had come to understand that appearance didn t matter much in a world gripped by crisis because she realized she still looked pretty in glasses A few of the second tier characters had the potential to be interesting, but they got sadly little attention.
To my total lack of surprise, the ending was incongruous, bordering on deus ex machina view spoiler The main female character finds a random abandoned house in the woods, complete with garden and self sustaining energy source Hallelujah, we re saved hide spoiler