SciFi Book Review: Control


Control by Lydia Kang

Set in 2150 – in a world of automatic cars, nightclubs with auditory ecstasy drugs, and guys with four arms – this is about the human genetic “mistakes” that society wants to forget, and the way that outcasts can turn out to be heroes.

When their overprotective father is killed in a terrible accident, Zel and her younger sister, Dylia, are lost in grief. But it’s not until strangers appear, using bizarre sensory weapons, that the life they had is truly eviscerated. Zel ends up in a safe house for teens that aren’t like any she’s ever seen – teens who, by law, shouldn’t even exist. One of them – an angry tattooed boy haunted by tragedy – can help Zel reunite with her sister.

But only if she is willing to lose him.

Zel is a fun character – she has a disorder that she doesn’t let slow her down. And when she meets her new foster family, she initially freaks out when seeing their shocking deformities. But she’s soon able to see past their physical appearance. Zel is a brilliant girl, yet will sacrifice everything (especially herself) to free her sister.

Control is a fast-paced, surprising debut. First in a new science fiction series, there is plenty of suspense, mystery, romance, and betrayal. This dark adventure is completely engaging and impossible to put down at times. I found myself reading faster at the more intense scenes, so wrapped up in what was going on. There are a lot of twists and surprises along the way. And the ending is thrilling, and leaves the reader eager for the next in this exciting series.