Title: Flash Point
Author: Nancy Kress
Publisher: Viking – Penguin Group, Inc.
Release Date: November 8, 2012
Amy had dreams of going to college, until the Collapse destroyed the economy and her future. Now she is desperate for any job that will help support her terminally ill grandmother and rebellious younger sister. When she finds herself in the running for a slot on a new reality TV show, she signs on the dotted line, despite her misgivings. And she’s right to have them. TLN’s Who Knows People, Baby—You? has an irresistible premise: correctly predict what the teenage cast will do in a crisis and win millions. But the network has pulled strings to make it work, using everything from 24/7 hidden cameras to life-threatening technology to flat-out rigging. Worse, every time the ratings slip, TLN ups the ante. Soon Amy is fighting for her life—on and off camera.
Considering that this book was like a cross between The Hunger Games and Dual, it wasn’t as exciting as I’d thought it’d be. The climax really only came at the very end, and then the last few pages, though interesting, were a little anticlimactic.
That being said, it was overall a pretty good book. The characters were interesting, for the most part, and I really liked Amy and her grandmother. Of course, Rafe was awesome, too, and Tommy was really sweet. I liked how diverse the characters were, and even though I wasn’t 100% convinced of their three-dimensionality (some – like Waverly – were kind of cliché), I liked that there were some unexpected traits or background histories that made them more realistic. I also really like the cover – that was really what drew me to the book in the first place.
My favorite part of the writing was that Kress showed more than Amy’s POV. Inserting a couple scenes from the TV station’s POV heightened the tension and made me wonder when the climax would come. With sinister motives, the whole book was great at keeping the reader interested in what comes next. There were a lot of moral implications to the book, too, which I liked because they weren’t explicitly stated. Instead, it was musings and metaphors through the writing that conveyed these things. I liked the messages that the book had for its readers, and that they were contained in such a good story.
Although it was not the best book I’ve ever read, it was a decent read that I would recommend to anyone who enjoys easy, dystopian reads (and don’t be deceived by the size of the book – it really is a quick read).
*Note: I do not recommend this book to anyone under the age of 14 due to sexual content, language, and violence.