Wednesday, 9 December 2009

Review: Specials by Scott Westerfeld

Specials by Scott Westerfeld
US Pub. Date: 11 September 2007 (Paperback)
UK Pub. Date: 6 November 2006 (Paperback)
400 pages (US version)
Genre: Young Adult Post-Apocalyptic Dystopian

After having read the previous two books in this series, I couldn't wait to read Specials. This book is the final book in a trilogy centering on the main character, Tally Youngblood(1). It starts out where Pretties left off, this time following a group of teens called the "Specials". I won't give away who makes up that group or what they do, because that would be spoilerish. I will say, however, that the main themes that have run throughout the series continue in this one.

One critique I have of the series in general is that the books seem to follow the same pattern of growth, and this was somewhat unsatisfying to me, because I felt like all the growth I'd seen in the previous books were discounted so that the characters could have a lower point from which to start.

Otherwise, Specials was very action-packed, well-developed, and exciting. I found myself so attached to these characters that I hadn't started out liking that I cried in certain parts of the book. Anyone who knows me will realize that's a big deal. I rarely cry while reading books.

The ending not only left me satisfied, but changed. It left me with lots of questions about society, myself, and what we all do to make ourselves attractive. How far would we go? Would we give up ourselves, our sense of independence? Would we give up our freedoms? Out of context, these questions probably seem superficial (I mean, why would I give up my freedom just to be pretty?), but after you read the books, I think you will understand where I am coming from.

I enjoyed this series immensely, and would recommend it to anyone, really. There was humor, action, great characterization, and a tiny bit of romance.

  1. There is actually a fourth book in this series, which I have not read but plan to soon. The fourth books doesn't center on the main characters from the trilogy, but they apparently make appearances throughout.


inkspatters said...

Love Scott Westerfeld. Great review :)