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Swarm (Zeroes 2) Paperback – 27 September 2016
About the Author
Margo Lanagan has been publishing stories for children, young adults and adult readers for twenty-five years. She has won numerous awards, including four World Fantasy Awards. Two of her books have been Michael L. Printz Honor books and she has been shortlisted for the Hugo and Nebula awards and for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize in the young adult division. Visit Margo at her blog, AmongAmidWhile.Blogspot.com, or follow her on Twitter at @MargoLanagan.
Deborah Biancotti has written two short story collections, Bad Power and A Book of Endings. She’s been nominated for the Shirley Jackson Award and the William L. Crawford Award for Best First Fantasy Book. You can find her online at DeborahBiancotti.com or on Twitter at @Deborah_B.
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- ASIN : 1471124916
- Publisher : Simon & Schuster Childrens Books (27 September 2016)
- Language: : English
- Paperback : 464 pages
- ISBN-10 : 9781471124914
- ISBN-13 : 978-1471124914
- Reading age : 8 years and up
- Item Weight : 280 g
- Dimensions : 13 x 2.8 x 19.8 cm
Best Sellers Rank:
#707,144 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- #64,752 in Children's Literature & Fiction (Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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So after the events of the first book the gang have opened up an nightclub where they can test their powers safely as a group on the crowd that arrives, mostly by making everyone have a good time with Mobs ability. But then something happens that causes everyone to go nuts, some zeroes from out of town who enjoy doing the opposite of what the gang do and leave people in terrified confused recks. The gang decides to track them down and stop them before they seriously hurt someone. And then they learn about Swarm, the titular character of this book.
I still really like that other than Ethan the Zeroes powers are all based around crowds and perception of crowds, its just so very different to most super powered stories. I also really love the idea of Ethan's voice, some all knowing entity that in the right situation and questions could answer all of their problems if only Ethan could think of what he wanted to make it say. The new powers are also really interesting and stay within the theme of messing with crowds of people.
OKAY ENTERING SPOILER TERRITORY!!
All the gang are back with their own problems going on outside of the swarm issue, and im not gonna lie Thibault's story is always the one i want more of and although he and flicker now have a very close relationship and she tries really hard to get others to remember him too, his situation is still so tragic to read about. You just want the guy to be happy. There is not as much of Nate or flicker herself this time around and what there is of flicker is usually part of the main storyline or helping Thibault with his issues. I felt there was a missed opportunity for her that could have lead to something after she witnesses swarms method of killing through the eyes of its mind controlled victims. We kinda get that with Kelsie as she can feel how the swarmed crowd feels carrying out the act and it unnerves her, but it would have been good to include that with flicker and maybe have those two talk about and work through it.
Speaking of swarm it certainly makes an impact when it shows up for the first time (referring to it to hide gender) and has interesting repercussions for Kelsie aka Mob who has a similar ability to influence crowds. When it is finally revealed though It is kind of disappointing what little info we get about its origin and how it started killing other Zeroes, you can probably guess it after you realize how its powers work but i would have liked one point of view chapter so we could understand its character a little more.
I really can't talk more about this book without spoiling everything but Scott Westerfield if you read this you are a brilliant author. But I swear to god if that issue isn't resolved in the next book (and you bloody well know what i mean) you may be the cruelest author ever. Brilliant but cruel. god trying to find a way to write about how it made me feel but even that would be too big a spoiler. you'll just have to read it for yourself.
And I enjoyed the first book of Zeroes, because while I hate superhero movies I LOVE books and movies about super powers, and I really enjoyed the obscure but interesting powers that the Zeroes themselves have.
So I'm going to get right into it and avoid spoilers. I think the story and pacing of this book was better than the first. I think we got to understand the Zeroes better. And I will be buying the third book.
Here were my issues. Predictability is a problem. Not in where the story will go necessarily, but the prominent love plot of this book could be seen A THOUSAND MILES AWAY. Maybe it's just because I expect my YA novels to force-feed me a love subplot but I knew it was coming. THAT SAID, the love plot is really sweet, tastefully done, and the LGBTQ+ community will be vair, vair excited.
The other minor love subplot near the end of the book, also predictable, but so it goes. Apparently every YA character has to have a love interest or else the whole story is moot. IT'S OKAY TO BE SINGLE! But I digress.
Ethan continues to be THE ABSOLUTE WORST, Chizara continues to have the BEST super power, Kelsey continues to be a whineosaurous and it can be really hard to get through some of her scenes. Nate is fairly absent, Thibault continues to pull on my heart strings, and Flicker is still the coolest girl around.
Of course when everything hits the fan, only people NOT in the main cast get blown to bits. This continues to be an ineffective way to write stories! I know it's YA, I KNOW, but when things get as serious as they do when this crazy Zero rolls in killing other people, you'd think that at least ONE of the main Zeroes would be in actual danger. But nah, let's try to pretend it's a really big deal, but put into danger only a few minor characters who were just introduced and who the readers don't care about at all. That's silly. I don't want the authors to pull any punches, I want things to get REAL and have there be REAL STAKES. But that tends to be the issue with superhero movies and books in the first place; you know the main characters will be fine because they're the heroes. I just need more.
I would give the book overall a 3.5, but I did enjoy the ending, there's a lot of new developments with the super powers and we're getting a better understanding to the whole Zero situation, so I'll bump it up to a 4. I'm excited to read the next one. I'd really like to see these Zeroes try to understand their powers more and experiment more, which is why the beginning of the book really hooked me--yes, they were experimenting! They were figuring out their powers! Things are happening! So more developments in that area would be great. That, plus some real risk to the characters, and maybe not pairing off every character to be in a relationship, would be really solid.
Looking forward to the next one!