Leave Young World to the Young

Leave Young World to the Young

Young World is a big hit among my high school readers. The premise is that two years ago, a virus wiped out the young and old, leaving teens (13-17 yr olds) in New York to fight for survival in a world with no future. Jefferson inherits the leadership of his community when his older brother reaches adulthood and, as expected, dies. In a bid to put off the necessary decisions that come with leading, he decides to go on a scavenging expedition for a scientific journal that might be the answer to the virus. While the concept was interesting, I didn’t care for the execution. If you are old enough to have died from this virus, you can probably skip this one. It seemed like adult readers felt this had all been done before. If, however you would have survived to roam the streets of New York letting your freak flag fly, this is a book you might want to check out.

Young World Chris Weitz
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published July 29th 2014 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Goodreads Summary
After a mysterious Sickness wipes out the rest of the population, the young survivors assemble into tightly run tribes. Jefferson, the reluctant leader of the Washington Square tribe, and Donna, the girl he’s secretly in love with, have carved out a precarious existence among the chaos. But when another tribe member discovers a clue that may hold the cure to the Sickness, five teens set out on a life-altering road trip to save humankind.

The tribe exchanges gunfire with enemy gangs, escapes cults and militias, braves the wilds of the subway and Central Park…and discovers truths they could never have imagined.

The Young World (The Young World, #1)The Young World by Chris Weitz
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I gave this book four stars because every high school student, male and female, who has picked it up has recommended it to me, so it is engaging its target audience. The action is non stop, and the characters are recognizeable stereotypes of every teen you have ever known. It was funny and shocking and a new horror was around every corner. There was even a lot to think about in regard to current social issues, which are highlighted by the ideologies that the different tribes adopt. While my students had no complaints, I have to say that I was really turned off by one of the narrators — she drove me crazy for a while, but her narrative voice does become more readable after the first few chapters. Jefferson was also a problem for me because he felt under developed and flat — there was no growth for him as a character. Why is he a major character, much less a narrator, if the reader isn’t going to be privy to those thoughts and feelings that show he is getting something out of all he experiences? I am still thinking about the ending. It was so unexpected and inexplicable that I feel cheated. There is a lot of mature language and a lot of mature situations, so this is a grade 10 and up read.

View all my reviews


About queenbook

When the final bell rings, I stash those messy piles of essays and analysis assignments in a desk drawer and I head home to a pile of good books. My kids and dog eat too many chicken nuggets and the house could be neater, but as long as I get my daily read, I guess we are doing all right. When I was twelve and fifteen and eighteen and twenty, I believed I needed to get out there and do those things I had just been reading about, which ended in disaster, tears, a tattoo that scares me every time I catch a glimpse of it in the mirror, and the realization that some of us are meant for action, and some of us are meant to critique the pace of action in a book. I read primarily YA fiction as I have a rather hulking classroom library and a hundred high school readers to engage daily. Nothing makes me happier than coming to school and finding an impatient teenager waiting by my door to turn in a book and get another one just like it. I adore a good zombie, a medieval princess, or girl assassin (I would like them all in one book if you are a writer looking for some inspiration). I add historical mystery to my wish list a year in advance, and you should get out of my way when the next Outlander book comes out. I have an embarrassing fondness for rock star books, but only if they don’t get too trashy and embarrass me. My favorite book of all time is The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery. My book boyfriends include Gilbert Blythe, Alonzo Wilder, and Jamie Fraser. They are mine and you can’t have them.

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