Glory O'Brien is graduating high school with no idea of where her life is going to go, because she's afraid she'll follow in her mother's steps and commit suicide. One night, Glory drinks a petrified bat and begins to see things--horrible visions of a future in which America is torn in two, and women's rights are shattered to bits. As Glory races to record her visions, she ends up uncovering secrets of her family's past and finding her own (albeit twisted) purpose.
This book destroyed me in the best possible way. A.S. King is a brilliant author and she manages to weave minor characters into a gorgeous tapestry of a story. I really appreciate that King isn't afraid to explore darker themes in her work as well as discuss the dreaded F word--feminism. This book resonated with me greatly because it brought everything I'd ever wanted in a book together. I had a Glory, a well-written female protagonist who wasn't sure about what she wanted to accomplish, racing to stop a terrible future that loomed ahead, all the while finding out who she really was. Hats off to King, because this book is a masterpiece.
The idea that someone can see the future and is racing to stop it is always interesting, but King put a brilliant spin on it--there is no travelling repeatedly to the future to put an end to terrible regimes; instead, Glory is forced to work around the constraints of the present. This idea, for me, is what really set the novel apart from others in the sci-fi subgenre of YA.
Also, the book addresses the problems young adults have with coping with loss, deciding where they want to take their future, and dealing with unhealthy relationships. King manages to encompass and address all of these issues without drawing the reader's attention away from Glory's race to document the future.
Recommended For: Anyone who enjoys a darker storyline still set in the YA genre will devour this book, as well as girls (and boys, and those who aren't either) who are starting to explore feminism. This book will definitely resonate with high school students who don't know where they're going to steer their life, because it gives them a strong, realistic role model to look up to. Glory doesn't have all the answers, but she is preparing herself for them, and readers will definitely appreciate that.