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Acquisitions, by Christine Haggerty
Genre: YA Science Fiction
Publisher: Fox Hollow Publications
Published: 2013
Review Posted: 7/14/2014
Reviewer Rating:
Reader Rating: Not Rated

Acquisitions, by Christine Haggerty

Book Review by Michael D. Griffiths

Have you read this book?

Acquisitions, by Christine Haggey is a young adult dystopian novel. She mixes post apocalypse adventure with a dash of childhood angst, set against a backdrop of hopelessness and despair.

The hero is Cam one of a smattering of children labeled immune to the plague by the survivors that have organized to control what is left of humanity. There are also mutants living with them. Mutants are like their human counterparts, only stronger and faster.

Cam is living in a foul orphanage with two sibling mutants, Tara, who he has a crush on and her evil brother Devon who he fears and despises. Early on in the novel, these three as well as Cam's friend are picked to travel to the capital to serve the others that have survived the plague. Along the way, his feelings for Tara grow while Devon hatred towards him becomes a murderous rage. They run into more teens and soon Cam becomes involved with another mutant girl named Myla and his feelings grow more complex and confused.

When I first began this novel I worried over whether I could handle reading another young adult novel so soon. However, it quickly grew on me. The author does a great job of getting the reader invested in Cam and wondering how things will turn out for him. I found myself 'upgrading' the book from my lunch break at work novel, to my camping novel, (This is actually a big deal) and I was happy to be able to finish it while off in the wilds of Northern Arizona.

A thread of helplessness flows through this book that brings back that teenaged feeling one has when feeling like an adult, but still not being in control of one's life. Add to this the attraction and friendship one can feel for others and you can see how the author has used a fictional backdrop to weave a tale that strikes to the core of adolescent emotions and feelings of uncertainty. I should also mention that Cam is a strong character.

Possible drawbacks include that some of the other character's motivations remained unclear. What was Devon's payoff for being so evil? Why did Tara remain so helpless against her brother? Some of this was explained, but it seemed more like an afterthought to justify behaviors instead of a foundation for them. Also their guard Smith went from just guarding them, to also being the only guard to really do anything later when several were present.

Still, this is without a doubt the best young adult novel I have read in quite a while, or perhaps since I was one myself. I think lovers of young adult fiction should give this a try and most post apocalyptic fans of all sorts would get something out of this too.
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