Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Early Review - The Fox Inheritance (Jenna Fox Chronicles, Book 2) by Mary E. Pearson (4/5 stars)

The Fox Inheritance (The Jenna Fox Chronicles)Reading level: Young Adult
Genre: Science Fiction
Size:  304 pages
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.
Release Date: August 30, 2011
ISBN:  978-0805088298
Stand Alone or Series: 2nd in the Jenna Fox Chronicles
Source: ARC from Amazon Vine
Rating: 4/5 stars

I got a copy of this book through the Amazon Vine program.  I absolutely loved The Adoration of Jenna Fox and was excited to see what the sequel would bring.  It was a good sequel; although you should definitely read The Adoration of Jenna Fox first.

It is two hundred and sixty years after the events portrayed in The Adoration of Jenna Fox and Jenna's friends Locke and Kira have finally been made bodies and had their minds uploaded to them.  Only the man who completed uploaded them to their new bodies doesn't have their best interests at heart.  When Locke and Kira decide to escape they are plunged into a world very different from the one they left.

The whole premise behind this book is that when Jenna destroyed the back-ups of her friends' minds there was actually another copy of her friends out there.  The story is told from Locke's point of view.  Most of the story follows Kira and Locke; Jenna doesn't enter the story until the last third of the book or so.

Locke is an interesting character, and while I wasn't as engaged with him as I was with Jenna in the first book, it was still neat to watch him experience the world after a gap of two hundred and sixty years.  I love how Pearson throws in some new science and gadgets, but how she also drives home the point of how many things haven't changed.

I think another reason (besides Locke and Kira not being quite as easy to relate to as Jenna) that I liked the first book better was that it tackled some really interesting political and social issues.  This book does expand on those issues some and also focuses on other social issues.  For example the issue of how many rights to give Bots (basically driods the service humans) comes up as does the issue of people who want to live off of the grid of society.  These issues are interesting but not nearly as engaging or as shocking as the issues addressed in the first book (how much of you needs to be left for you to still be human).

The story ends well and is pretty complete.  There is some room left for a future story featuring Locke or Jenna.

Overall a good addition to the series.  Definitely not as good as The Adoration of Jenna Fox, the characters aren't as engaging and the issues addressed not as spectacular, but it is still a good story.  There are some new interesting issues raised around robot rights and people who want to live "off-grid".  It was fun to see how Jenna had changed in 260 years.  If you loved The Adoration of Jenna Fox, definitely pick this up for a read.  If you haven't read The Adoration of Jenna Fox go read it; it is a wonderful example of young adult science fiction that is engaging on both an emotional and intellectual level.

This book goes towards the following reading challenges:
- 100+ Reading Challenge

The Fox Inheritance (The Jenna Fox Chronicles)

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