Review Blog

Oct 12 2016

Swarm by Scott Westerfeld, Margo Lanagan and Deborah Biancotti

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Zeroes bk 2. Allen and Unwin, 2016. ISBN 9781925267242
(Age: 14+) Recommended. Thriller. Super heroes. 'Every power has a dark side'. Reading the second in the Zeroes series takes the reader on a dark, scary and unexpected trip on the wild side. The Zeroes - Ethan (Scam), Nate (Bellwether), Thibault (Anonymous), Kelsie (Mob), Riley (Flicker) and Chizara (Crash) have made themselves an underground nightclub where they are experimenting with crowds and controlling their powers. One night two other Zeroes, Coin and Glitch, take to the dance floor and the Zeroes find that not only are there more people out there who have super powers, but a powerful person, Swarm, is out to harm them. On the track of Swarm, the friends find themselves in deadly danger, and Swarm's actions make them face some issues. Bellwether's confidence is severely challenged; Mob has to face the dark side of her power; Anon realises that he doesn't belong anywhere; Crash has to question the morality of her actions while Ethan faces trying to fit in.
An exciting second novel, this finds the characters growing and working out the limits to their powers. There are lots of unexpected moments and it is difficult to predict just what is going to happen next. Lots of action and suspense kept me glued to the page but the personal conflicts that each character faced brought plenty of heart wrenching moments as well.
This is one dark, frightening and thrilling ride. There are some rather horrific deaths that are not for the faint hearted and the conclusion leaves the reader reeling from the shock of it, and desperate for the next instalment.
Pat Pledger

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