SciFi Book Review: Freakling

Freakling by Lana Krumwiede

In twelve-year-old Taemon’s city, everyone has a power called psi — the ability to move and manipulate objects with their minds. When Taemon loses his psi in a traumatic accident, he must hide his lack of power by any means possible. But a humiliating incident at a sports tournament exposes his disability, and Taemon is exiled to the powerless colony. The “dud farm” is not what Taemon expected, though: people are kind and open, and they actually seem to enjoy using their hands to work and play and even comfort their children. Taemon adjusts to his new life quickly, making friends and finding unconditional acceptance. But gradually he discovers that for all its openness, there are mysteries at the colony, too — dangerous secrets that would give unchecked power to psi wielders if discovered. When Taemon unwittingly leaks one of these secrets, will he have the courage to repair the damage — even if it means returning to the city and facing the very people who exiled him?

Before he loses his psi ability, Taemon has an extraordinary ability, beyond what others have. But his brother is narcissistic and extremely cruel. And it’s his brother’s jealousy that culminates to Taemon losing his psi. Once Taemon loses the ability, it’s blatantly apparent just how dependent his community has become on psi. It has become used for every little action from eating to opening doors. Their ability to use their hands and other common motions has been lost. And when Taemon moves to the “dud farm” he realizes that his former community seems to be the ones with the disability – not those without psi. It’s an interesting twist to a unique, dystopian world.

Freakling is a fast-paced story that I couldn’t put down. Easily one of my favorite YA dystopian books of the year, it’s not only a great thriller but a fantastic drama as well. With plenty of suspense, intrigue, and mystery – readers of all ages will enjoy this exciting fantasy debut from a talented new author.

Freakling releases from Candlewick on October 9, 2012.

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