Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Prism by Faye Kellerman and Aliza Kellerman

Health care seems to be a big issue in the world today and this novel takes it one step further - to a world where there is no such thing as health care. What would happen if there were no doctors, hospitals, pills? It would be one thing if you grew up in that world, it would be a completely different thing if you landed in that world, completely aware of what was lacking.

Kaida and two classmates (Zeke and Joy) went on a class trip that ended in a horrific car accident. Seeking shelter from the desert rain, the three teens find themselves trapped in a cave. As they search for an escape route, they stumble down a hole and into a blinding light. When they wake up, it's a week earlier but things aren't the same. People act crazy when you mention being sick and have no idea what a nurse is. To make matters worse, Kaida, Zeke, and Joy all had the same strange dream and Joy is even suffering from an injury she sustained in the dream. As the three search for the truth, they make new friends, desperate for a better life where it isn't survival of the fittest. The bigger question is, will the three return to their world?

When I first picked up the book, I thought it was going to be like the movie Final Destination where the main character catches a glimpse of the future and tries to stop something bad from happening. I was glad to see this wasn't the case. The first few pages start off a little choppy - the language isn't very smooth - but it gets better as the story progresses. What I liked about this was that it held my attention. Once they entered the new world, I wanted to know what was going on. When I learned the truth, I needed to know how things were going to work out. That's not to say that it's perfect. The ending was almost too easy. It could have used another twist but that could work in two ways - making the reader groan at the thought that another book would be the same story or excited about the prospect of another book with an interesting twist on society. It also felt like there were a few unanswered questions. While Iona Boyd was explained, I thought an actual appearance by this character might throw in a nice monkey wrench like if she appeared in the end. I really think that this story could have been pushed further.

This book turned out a lot more interesting that I originally thought. It started off rocky but really came through. The ending could have been better, but it works. When I think about it, it still has the chance of being a different world in which case, yay for the author. I just wish the ending hadn't been such a nice little bow.

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