Review No.124 – Adaptation

Adaptation (Adaptation No.1) – Malinda Lo

Little, Brown and Company, 2012

When the first plane falls, it seems like a terrible accident – but as reports of crashes come in from across North America, panic sets in. Waiting for the flight that will take them home to San Francisco, teenagers Reese Holloway and David Li are trapped in the ensuing chaos as airports across the country go into lockdown. Their only option is to drive through the desert. On a stretch of empty highway, a bird flies into their headlights and Reese loses control of the car. The next thing she knows, she’s waking in a military hospital so top secret no one will even tell her where she is. And that’s only the beginning of her problems…

I started Adaptation with very little idea of what it was about and I’m glad I did, because not knowing what’s happening is what gives the opening chapters their punch. The plot becomes a bit bogged down in the middle – Reese is an awful communicator and generally a pretty inaccessible person, making her dialogue with almost all the other characters rather frustrating. This could be intentional, but it didn’t work for me and I liked her friends better. It’s good to see so many significant characters who are QUILTBAG and/or of colour, which is a rarer experience than it should be. Towards the end the pace picks up again and there’s a lot to be explained in book two, Inheritance. Malinda Lo is a co-founder of the Diversity in YA blog and her other books include Ash and Huntress.

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