Despite the first real snow of the season that falling outside right now (yay!), this post is not about the weather. Its a book review! Or, rather, a book series review. And this should be really interesting trying to explain/review without giving anything away or making it confusing, so lets jump right in!
I just finished the Uglies series by Scott Westerfeld (comprised of Uglies, Pretties, Specials, Extras, and Bogus to Bubbly) and LOVED it! I am now a fan/expert on all things Bogus to Bubbly, Crim to Cutter.
In Uglies we first meet Tally Youngblood, a 15-year-old girl living in a futuristic society (roughly 300 years after our own). She is not-so-patiently waiting for her birthday so she can turn pretty. You see, everyone one is considered ugly until the surgery on their sixteenth birthday turns them pretty, bringing with it a whole new beautiful lifestyle. The New Pretties live in their own town where their only job is to have a really great time. This means non-stop parties, drinking and anything else that brings them pleasure. Just before the big day, Tally makes a new friend who turns her world upside down. Shay isn't sure she wants to have the surgery. She has heard of the fabled town of Smoke where everyone stays ugly forever. When Shay goes missing, the authorities (that no one believes exist) give Tally the worst choice she can imagine: Go find Shay and turn her in, or never turn pretty. The decision Tally makes forever changes her world in ways she never expected.
Now stops my summaries. If I continue to describe the rest of the series, you'll know too much and it will ruin the series for you. I will say, however, that Extras is not fully about Tally....she's not the main character. Also, Extras isn't as great as the rest of the series, but still a good book.
These books are soo good (or bubbly or icy, in Tally-speak, depending what book you're in), even though they sound really weird....and they sound weirder the more you try to explain it, which is why I gave up. Basically, its this futuristic society that sort of shows what humanity become if we continue as we are. We will fully become the Rusties (the "ancient" humanity that destroyed the world with battles over stuff, space and popularity). It sort of makes you think about the implications of a world where everyone is pretty.
The books are filled with really cool tech-toys like hover boards, bungee jackets, flash tattoos (which are actually real!), eyescreens, and costume-surge (plastic surgery that wears off in a day). There are all kinds of cliques (Crims, Tech-Heads, Manga-Heads, Kickers, Sly Girls, Special Circumstances, Cutters....this could go on a while). And you have guaranteed action in each book...usually involving the top-secret, highly-rumored government authorities, Special Circumstances. To top it all off, there's so much fun slang! Like "bubbly", "eye-kicking", "brain-missing", "icy", "SpagBol", "dizzy-making" and so many others. I've started using them in real life because they're so fun! And if thats not enough for you, there's even some romance throughout the series. (Are you a David fan, or Zane?? Frizz?)
So, if you like young adult fiction, action or sci-fi books, you'll like these. My brother thought I was ridiculous when I tried explaining them to him, but after the first few chapters, he was hooked. And once you've read them, tell me so I can have someone to talk about them with! Its been painful to not write everything that happens in these books! Oh! And last note. Bogus to Bubbly is the "insiders guide" to the series, not an actual story. It gives more background to the technology, how the author came up with some things and names, what certain things mean or look like. It also has a "history book" that explains all the history from the Rusties, to the Diego war, to after the Extra's...experiment (I can't say what it is!).
Don't be a bubblehead, read the books! Hope you enjoy them as much as I do! **Ashley-wa**