The Dark Intercept

Julia Keller. Tor Teen, $17.99 (320p) ISBN 978-0-7653-8762-2
In this dystopian trilogy opener set in 2294, a portion of humanity dwells on the artificial paradise of New Earth, which floats above the devastated remnants of the old world, where the less fortunate eke out a hardscrabble existence. Meanwhile, a device known as the Intercept monitors and records all emotions, weaponizing them as needed to control those who get out of line. Sixteen-year-old Violet Crowley, an Intercept operator and daughter of New Earth’s founder, wants to find out why her crush, police officer Danny Mayhew—whose brother invented the Intercept—frequently travels back to the surface, despite the rules. Her investigations lead to the discovery of secrets regarding her family history, the Intercept’s true purpose, and a rebel group dedicated to freeing humanity from its grasp. Keller (Back Home) presents an intriguing premise, but this story falls apart around the edges, largely due to murky character motivations and aspects of the worldbuilding that don’t hold up to close scrutiny. The central romance between Violet and Danny never feels fully believable, and the climax leads to a lackluster resolution. Ages 13–up. Agent: Lisa Gallagher, DeFiore & Co. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 10/09/2017
Release date: 11/07/2017
Genre: Children's
Ebook - 304 pages - 978-0-7653-8764-6
Paperback - 320 pages - 978-0-7653-8763-9
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