By Lana Krumwiede
(Candlewick, Hardcover, 9780763659370, 320pp.)
Publication Date: October 9, 2012
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A thrilling, fast-paced dystopian novel about the dangers of unchecked power and the dilemmas facing a boy torn between two ways of life.
In twelve-year-old Taemon’s city, everyone has a power called psi — the ability to move and manipulate objects with their minds. When Taemon loses his psi in a traumatic accident, he must hide his lack of power by any means possible. But a humiliating incident at a sports tournament exposes his disability, and Taemon is exiled to the powerless colony. The "dud farm" is not what Taemon expected, though: people are kind and open, and they actually seem to enjoy using their hands to work and play and even comfort their children. Taemon adjusts to his new life quickly, making friends and finding unconditional acceptance. But gradually he discovers that for all its openness, there are mysteries at the colony, too — dangerous secrets that would give unchecked power to psi wielders if discovered. When Taemon unwittingly leaks one of these secrets, will he have the courage to repair the damage — even if it means returning to the city and facing the very people who exiled him?
Lana Krumwiede is a debut novelist with many short stories, articles, and poems to her credit. She lives in Richmond, Virginia.
Memorable characters; a smooth, suspenseful plotline; and a fascinating premise make this debut a worthy addition to the genre. Give it to kids who are a little too young for Suzanne Collins’s The Hunger Games.
—School Library Journal