Sunday, July 29, 2012

Teen Volunteer Dystopia Picks

Here at Flowing Wells Library, our summer teen volunteers kept busy with an art project based on their favorite dystopian novels and short stories.

The Giver by Lois Lowry was a striking visual choice for the collage. Black and white with poignant bursts of color illustrate a tale of a boy who learns there is much more to life than he has been led to believe. If you like this classic, check out its sequels, too!

Read on for the rest of their picks...
"Harrison Bergeron" is a classic short story by Kurt Vonnegut. Unfortunately, we don't have a print version available, but it looks like the National Review (who first published it in 1965) currently have it available to read online on their site. Imagine, says their collage, everyone being equal. Truly equal. No one is smarter, or stronger, or more talented than anyone else. And this is enforced with deadly seriousness.

Divergent by Veronica Roth begins with Tris making a decision that's going to last for the rest of her life: does she join her family's faction of Abnegation and lead a selfless life in the background, or will she leave her family behind and join another faction instead? This was a hard one to find collage materials for, since words like "abnegation" doesn't come up very often in magazines! Yes, the waiting list is a little long already, but now's the time to reserve it, since the sequel's already out and a movie is surely not far behind.

Brave New World by Aldous Huxley is another oldie but goodie that's surprisingly fresh and relevant. Plus, it's sure to be required reading at some point in your life, so why not read it now, while dystopias are the in thing?

Finally, I can't leave off their top pick, even though you're sure to have heard of it even if you've been living under a rock: The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. This was a really fun one to collage -- as you can probably guess, magazine advertisements are full of teenagers being exploited, violence being glorified, and so on...gee, maybe that was her point... Yes, there's still a super-long wait list, but don't forget to check your local library's Express shelf for first-come, first-served copies of the whole trilogy!

Happy reading!

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