Tuesday, August 7, 2012


I wasn't sure I would enjoy this book about teenagers turned into human weapons in a military world. It all depends on the presentation. In the case of Insignia, by S.J. Kincaid, I was pleasantly surprised. The story is more about the characters than the tech, so even a person in unfamiliar territory, like I was, can figure out what's going on.

Tom is a gamer and a con. He can make a person think it's their idea that he's beating them out of all their own money until it's too late. That's why he's the perfect candidate for a school that trains teenagers to be the new soldier of World War III, a war fought entirely for resources in space by machines controlled from the ground. No bloodshed. At least, not yet. Tom jumps at the chance to leave his gambling, drinking dad and escape a life of moving from hotel to hotel in the hopes they will win big. But he's not prepared for the catch. Is he willing to give everything up to play the game of his life?

Add to this scenario a mix of interesting, likeable characters, and you have a story that's not about fighting World War III, but rather about friendships. It's funny with great dialog. It's a little techy, but just enough to be fascinating. And it's a series, so if you like it, there's more to come!

Four stars for a unique young adult novel that doesn't rely on romance (though there's still a bit) for forward drive!

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