Wednesday, May 19, 2010
The Gardener by S.A. Bodeen
Release Date: May 25, 2010 from Feiwel and Friends
Mason has never known his father, but longs to. All he has of him is a DVD of a man whose face is never seen, reading a children’s book. One day, on a whim, he plays the DVD for a group of comatose teens at the nursing home where his mother works. One of them, a beautiful girl, responds. Mason learns she is part of a horrible experiment intended to render teenagers into autotrophs—genetically engineered, self-sustaining life-forms who don’t need food or water to survive. And before he knows it, Mason is on the run with the girl, and wanted, dead or alive, by the mysterious mastermind of this gruesome plan, who is simply called the Gardener.
Will Mason be forced to destroy the thing he’s longed for most?
A real page-turner, this book kept me reading way into the night. Too late actually, I was quite tired for work on Monday, because I just couldn't put this one down. It's a quick read that's full of a lot of action and I loved racing with the characters to the ending.
As for the characters, I absolutely adored Mason. He has his own demons, but he's always willing to help a damsel, or anyone else, in distress. He's that guy that you would've secretly had a crush on in high school, or at least, I would've anyway. I love how he immediately takes to this mysterious girl with an even more mysterious past. He just decides to help her and doesn't stop until he makes sure she's okay.
S. A. Bodeen has written a very thoughtful novel about what can happen when we try too hard to solve the world's problems. Sometimes we go a little too far and end up causing more harm than good. I totally enjoyed this book. My only complaint was that it was too short. It was so readable I just wanted to keep right on turning those pages even after I turned the last one. I would love for her to return to this world someday and catch up with where these characters are now. I think there's definitely more story to tell.