13 October 2009

The Compound by S. A. Bodeen

Are you prepared in the case of a nuclear disaster? An escape route, food, shelter, and ensured safety for all of your loved ones? Billionaire Rex Yanakakis, head of “the biggest computer manufacturer and software developer in the world,” has thought of everything. The Compound is an underground shelter built specifically for the Yanakakis family, a pretty close replication of the mansion that existed in their lives before the nuclear attack. One thing that Rex didn’t count on, though, was leaving his son Eddy, Eli’s twin brother, behind.

At fifteen, Eli has survived six years in the Compound. He’s let his hair grow long so that it covers his face, he refuses to touch anyone or be touched by anyone in his family, and he barely talks to anyone if he can help it. He misses Eddy, is reproachful of his sisters, and seriously distrusts his father, who is withdrawn, erratic, and secretive. When Eli discovers a connection to the outside through wireless internet access, everything changes. What if there was no nuclear disaster? What if Eddy and Gram are still alive and well? What if this was all just a game?

This title will certainly appeal to fans of Susan Beth Pfeffer’s Life As We Knew It and the dead & the gone, Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games, and other apocalyptic fiction. There are plot twists that may be upsetting to some readers, but many will be enthralled by this action-packed survival adventure. The underlying reality of the whole scenario is disturbingly exciting.
Call number: YA BODEEN (Teen Room)

Reviewed by kate the librarian

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