Dark Life, by Kat Falls
The earth’s oceans have risen up and swallowed most of the land, driving humans to pioneer underwater. Ty was the first to be born underwater, now sixteen with plans to own his own (underwater) land eventually. But pirates have been attacking, driving the topside commonwealth government to pass along all responsibility to the pioneers to apprehend the criminals. Meanwhile, Ty has met a young girl his age, who is looking for her brother. Gemma was raised Topside. But her brother has been trying to make a life for himself underwater. Ty decides to help Gemma, but they soon find themselves in the way of the deadly pirates, who have secrets of their own.
Falls has created a fantastic and incredibly vivid world of underwater adventure and sea life. Ty is a brave and unusual boy, who feels he has to hide his “dark gift” with good reason. The story is fast-paced, imaginative and action-packed. This is a science fiction novel geared toward middle readers, but genre fans of all ages will enjoy. I came in with low expectations, not thinking I’d enjoy a story where a civilization lives underwater. But I was more than impressed with the worldbuilding and thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it. Even if sea life isn’t your thing, Dark Life is a smart, fun and exciting read.