2018 Reviews · children · contemporary fiction · juvenile · Mrs R Review · Throwback Thursday

Guest Throwback Thursday Book Review: Zeroes by Scott Westerfeld, Margo Lanagan and Deborah Biancotti


Welcome to a weekly post, Throwback Thursday. This weekly book review post is a way to share some old favourites, books that were published over a year ago and most importantly those books that have been languishing on the to be read pile for far too long!

Don’t call them heroes. But these six Californian teens have powers that set themzeroes small apart.

Ethan aka Scam has a voice inside him that’ll say whatever people want to hear, whether it’s true or not. Which is handy, except when it isn’t – like when the voice starts gabbing in the middle of a bank robbery. The only people who can help are the other Zeroes, who aren’t exactly best friends these days.

Enter Nate, aka Bellwether, the group’s ‘glorious leader.’ After Scam’s SOS, he pulls the scattered Zeroes back together. But when the rescue blows up in their faces, the Zeroes find themselves propelled into whirlwind encounters with ever more dangerous criminals. At the heart of the chaos they find Kelsie, who can take a crowd in the palm of her hand and tame it or let it loose as she pleases.

Filled with high-stakes action and drama, Zeroes unites three powerhouse authors for the opening instalment of a thrilling new series.

Mrs R’s review:

Zeroes is the first in an action-packed young adult trilogy from Aussie author, Scott
Westerfeld, in collaboration with Margo Lanagan and Deborah Biancotti. Told in the third person, each chapter alternates between various teenagers; Scam, Mob, Bellwether, Kelsie, Crash, Flicker and Anonymous. From the very beginning the writing was seamless in its transitions between characters and characters, making it feel as if it is the story of one author. These aren’t your usual teens though as each one is learning to deal with an unusual super power, as suggested by their unique nicknames. I loved them all but some more than others. My favourite of the group would have to be Anonymous as people forget about him when they can’t see him. The authors did an excellent job of portraying the loneliness that he has felt from a very young age and the hard family decisions he has had to make as a result. Another unusual power was the ability to see through another’s eyes, which is how Flick operates. Blind, she is able to navigate the world through strangers and loved ones. I also appreciated the abilities of Crash who is able to ‘crash’ technology. She has a secret though that I did not see coming. With very separate powers, the Zeroes have not worked collaboratively since Scam told the truth, with no holding back. It is the head of the group, Bellwether, that brings them back together after a call for help from, ironically, Scam. It all begins with a getaway car, a bag full of money and a bank robbery… this is great read for those who are tired of the usual super hero genre and are looking for something different.

Zeroes by Scott Westerfeld, Margo Lanagan and Deborah Biancotti was published in 2015 by Allen & Unwin. Details on how to purchase the book can be found here.

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