MARTians PDF/EPUB ✓ Hardcover

MARTians Read it and weep Blythe Woolston's MARTians hurts to read because though it's labelled dystopianfuturistic it seems scarily contemporaryZoë's mother abandons her and her school closes down She finds work in AllMART and shelter in a laundromat But it's clear she's living day by day and doesn't really have a future There's never a chance to make money because she'll be forever in debt to AllMARTBut perhaps the most devastating moment is the casualness in which it's possible to purchase a firearm and ammunition from a mega mart This may be commonplace to some but it's far from normal where I live Yes the future is terrifying But knowing that acuiring weapons can be so easy for some RIGHT NOW in real life? That's even worse and the incident in the novel is chilling enoughBut throughout this terribly bleak AllMART existence is a thread of hope Always look for the ones who need help Zoë's one of the lucky people and now it's on her to spread help around While the book's ending may seem inconclusive I get the feeling that as long as she has friends she'll be OK This is a trimmed down version of my review to view the full review visit The Book RambleThis book was provided by Random House Canada in exchange for an honest reviewWhen Zoe Zindleman's school closes she's fast tracked to graduation and gets a job at megacorporation AllMART What follows is not much of a plot at all and is mostly just a string of random events that don't really amount to much Woolston sets up what could be a really interesting and meaningful dystopia but she lets it all build up to nothingI didn't enjoy this book at all The plot was lacking in that there was basically no plot There was no character development or depth displayed at any point in the entire novel There was entirely too much time spent on building a world that is entirely too similar to our own world to necessitate spending the entire book building the world and then doing nothing with itWe learn about AllMART and see some of their evil practices but we don't ever see Zoe working against this or trying to make any change to her world She just stays in the same situation same state without any change for the whole book There was no motivation for me to actually read anything in this book except for the mistaken hope that the book would actually start to have a plotI can't say much beyond that because there isn't much to comment on This was hardly a book it didn't have a plot at all 2 stars Will appeal to younger readers who enjoy light dystopian fiction but may feel a bit undeveloped to experienced readers I think that the author was trying to hold up a mirror to readers so that we think about how influenced we are by consumer culture but beyond that barely cautionary tale this book didn't have much sustenanceThis book takes place in a near future world where big corporate box stores cough Walmart cough essentially run every facet of society Schools are privatized and focused on raising students to be better consumers andor better retail workers Our protagonist Zoe lives in a nearly abandoned suburban neighborhood with her mother their house maintained in pristine condition as they're unsuccessfully attempting to sell it on a flooded real estate market The book begins with Zoe in school as an announcement is made that the school is closing and all of the students have graduated early Some are given job referrals some are carted off to other fates Zoe is given two job referrals and ends up working at AllMART one of the big box stores that controls everything Her mother inexplicably announces that she is moving with no explanation that I recall except to act as a plot device so Zoe has the house to herself She soon meets Timmer another AllMART employee who encourages her to ditch the suburban house to come live with him and and a couple other drifters in an old shopping mall So begins Zoe's new life as an AllMART employee working to sell sell sell to consumersI can't rate this book very highly because there just didn't seem to be much of a plot beyond the initial set up that I outlined above Zoe renamed Zero by the store in order to avoid duplicate name confusion among employees works at the store sees some less savory behind the scenes grit that seems tossed in there for mild shock value and that's about it There are some very minor side plots involving some of the other abandoned mall suatters but they don't really seem to serve a purpose I understand that the whole book is probably supposed to be a big cautionary tale about the direction that we're moving in as a greedy retail societybut there needs to be than that in a story There wasn't really a conflict or much character development No attempts to shake up this retail obsessed society or overthrow the AllMART dictators or even any attempts to flee to a free world Nothing We don't really see much beyond Zoe's dull existence so we don't know what the rest of the world is doing outside of AllMART view spoiler Toward the end there was a rushed poorly explained episode involving a baby and one of the other abandoned mall suatters named Juliette which evidently led to her arrest or something This caused Zoe Timmer and the rest to flee the abandoned mall for fear of being arrested themselves I suppose? and drive off into the sunsetor to another abandoned building? Again the ending was a bit rushed and I'm still not really sure what was behind the reactions of most of the characters To make things confusing throughout the book were interjected news stories involving some kind of tuna scandal and some fires fires that possibly started with an act of arson on Zoe's part? They never really make it clear These news stories apparently reached some kind of peak near the end of the bookbut again it didn't really seem to serve a purpose hide spoiler Woolston writes it I read it This is the law of my universe Before I comment I would like to clarify that yes I fully understand that this is a dystopian futurevery close to the current present about how giant corporations own our lives I've often been told that the reason I might dislike something is because I don't get it but there's not that much to get I understand the society as presented even Zoe's incredibly annoying Mary Sue behavior as influenced by the drug implant she gets even though that behavior doesn't change at all after she stops the drug Unfortunately this odd and off putting story asks uestions than it answers The premise is interesting but needs some serious editing and revision and the characters need to have dimensions to them and not the personality of a rubber band and a dishrag What happens is this Zoe is 17 and is told in school one day that she and the rest of the students at her school are graduating a full year and a half earlier than planned because the building is needed for something else Not that it was much of a school anyway she's being groomed to work retail She interviews at the two big corporations Walmart and KMart Excuse me that's AllMART and Mart that own everything and gets job offers to both of course as a traineestock boysalesperson Her mother decides to leave the home they share and disappears never to call or contact her in any way She ends up leaving her home and moving in with a group of other teens and one child at an abandoned strip mall Her new job leaves her in serious debt for the training the uniform etc and she starts to slowly uestion the world she lives in ripping out a medication implant that keeps her docile and dopey and helping a woman who kept a baby abandoned at daycare they abandon it elsewhere We find out that Raoul who owned the strip mall died and Timmer hasn't told anyone to which my gut reaction was why wouldn't he tell anyone? That makes no sense Eventually Zoe and her friends drive off into the sunset name tags thrown to the wind Here are my unanswered uestionsIf everyone is an employee of either AllMART or Mart if there were others surely our Mary Sue Zoe would have been offered them because she's perfect and entire communities are wiped out then who is doing the shopping there? And is this an overpopulated super consumerist society? If so why all the vacant buildings? If not why the dorms for retail workers? And why aren't customers allowed to use the bathrooms? Especially if it just means they poo in the dressing rooms was that detail necessary?? Why did AnnaMom leave in the first place? And what was she celebrating that night? If Zoe owns the house and the metal and wiring are so valuable why didn't her scavenger friends scavenge her house before she abandoned it especially if they're so poor they share cereal or melted ice cream for dinner? She trusts Timmer enough to get a ride home from him but is wary so why is she sleeping next to him in the strip mall every night when she was specifically offered a locked room with a couch to sleep in? When Zoe removed her implanted Prozac she got violently ill But if it's such a strong substance why is it that nobody else mentions the drug or their own interaction with it for the whole book? If there's so much surveillance everywhere why didn't any of the drones see that Zoe was the one who started a fire that is still raging by the end of the book? Why all the random references to kawaii? What was it with the photo hidden in the storage unit? Did that mean that her dad really did want to be in her life but wasn't for some unknown reason? Why would she just leave everything behind without even looking through it after going to the trouble of breaking in ESPECIALLY after finding the photo of the dad she thought never wanted her? What was that whole thing with Juliette and the manneuins? I seriously have no idea why that scene was in the book And why did they mention that some people are sexually attracted to cartoon characters? Why did we keep hearing about a tuna custody battle that went nowhere? Why was anyone shocked about the actions of the newscaster some reviews called it chilling but honestly everything was so bland it wasn't even that noteworthy? And most importantly Why did I waste time reading this book?I give this book 15 stars Very disappointed No character development no plot excitement nothing I will probably remember after I finish this review When I read Blythe Woolston I never know what the main character is going to ultimately do in MARTians Z is booted out into the world not only by her school recently closed to help balance the budget but also by her mom who takes off and lingers like a specter This is a novel seemingly about a world gone awry where consumers rule the show and the forgotten class of workers—some young some mentally ill some fully indoctrinated some whisked off to parts unknown because they can’t adjust—suffers endlesslyBut really this is a book that’s really about transitional anxiety — how little high school prepares people for a non college bound path how little our families prepare us for complex social and professional relationships how little we actually end up needing to survive but how much we lack when it comes to being emotionally healthy mentally healthy A great book brisk and funny dark and weird set in a world that’s got so much depth it made me think we might not be far from what Woolston’s arranged here clever a dystopian society without an enemyThe plot moves uickly you realize very uickly that something is VERY wrong with this world But it doesn't appear to be any sort of apocalypse Just the continuation of where we might really be headed right now if things don't change As each day unfolds it gets creepier and scarier even though there are no real monsters jumping out of the darkness I think that's what I liked most there are just hints of how far down society has been taken and there is no clear enemy to blame No president or leader no boss of the company that appears to be controlling a lot of the peopleJust a nameless faceless dread Reminds me of a lot of Hitchcock movies the scariest ones were the ones where you don't see the enemy but you know something is out there Since you can't see what it is it is even scarierThe main characters are well rounded and have a lot of depth The background characters have just what they need enough detail that you are interested but not so much that you can't keep up with all of themLooking forward to from this author and will be sharing this book with my friends A brilliant and bleak depiction of consumerism take to its extreme so not a whole lot further than we currently know itIf you like MT Anderson's Feed which you definitely need to read then you'll enjoy this too It also reminded me a bit of Brave New World where at times you feel like you're being given a tour of the world that is only slightly different from the one you knowA uote from it that sums up the ominous machine that is ALLMART when Zoe is contemplating making the customer happyWanting is only human Humans are only wants My purpose to see tiny seeds of wanting that I can magnify and satisfy The because I am human too I will want stuff The cycle is so beautiful I will belongCreeps me out makes me think Last girl Zoë Zindleman numerical ID 009 99 9999 has just been graduated Early Her options wait for her home to be foreclosed and stripped of anything valuable now that AnnaMom has moved away or move to the Warren an abandoned strip mall turned refuge for other left behinds—a safe place and close to AllMART Zoë’s new employer where “your smile is AllMART’s welcome mat” Zoë may be the last girl but her name means “life” and Zoë isn’t ready to disappear into the AllMART abyss Zoë wants to live MARTians is set in a world of exurban decay studded with big box stores where its inhabitants are numbed by shopping and the six o’clock “news” MARTians may be the future but it is frighteningly familiar Another teen dystopia in a world not so far in the future where the populace are brainwashed into consumerism hmm not unlike today Hopefully our schools aren't that bad yet and at least the powerful shopping consortiums don't actually control the airwaves again I say that hopefullyThis is in eual parts bizarre and heart rending Our heroine is left on her own mother takes off somewhere and the school is closed all at the same time She 'graduates' and begins work at one of the Marts She is lucky enough to meet a silent dissident and gradually learns about how the world really works and about who she isGood teen fiction

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