Saturday, January 31, 2009

Book Review: Skinned by Robin Wasserman

A little bit of Jenna Fox, a touch of Feed and Uglies, throw in some Gossip Girls and maybe some Generation Dead, and you sort of have an idea of what reading Skinned is like. If you have no idea what books I'm talking about (or even if you do), read on!

It's the not-too-distant-future, and Lia Kahn has it all- popularity, great looks, awesome athlete, the perfect boyfriend, and all the credits she wants to give her anything she wants. Until the accident that took everything from her. When Lia wakes up after the car crash, nothing is quite right. She can see, but not the way she used to. She can hear, but it's different. She can't feel anything, even though she can tell when she's touching stuff, or when it's touching her. And when Lia finds out that her dad made the choice to have her 'downloaded' when the doctors couldn't save her body, she begs him to let her die. Except she's already dead.

If anything, Lia's new, mechanized (yep, she's a robot) body is even more perfect than her old one, but when she goes home, nothing except her new body is perfect. Her mom won't touch her or make eye contact, her sister, Zoie, hates her (oh yeah, and stole all her friends while she was in the hospital fighting for the life she doesn't have anymore), her dad is indifferent (even though he's the one who made the call to do this to her), her boyfriend is acting really weird, the Faithers are protesting in front of her house, and no one believes that she's really Lia anymore, just a robot, a Skinner, programmed to act like Lia would.

The thing is, Lia doesn't feel like a Skinner. She feels like she's been skinned. And she doesn't know who, or even what she is anymore.

The first in a triology, this book was absolutely mesmerizing. A techno-spooky read, Wasserman deals with all kinds of freak-you-out stuff here, but especially with the question of what it really means to be human and if technology can really take it all away. Check it out @ the library!

(now reading volume 2 of Ultimate X-Men and hoping volume 3 gets here soon!)

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