Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Review: Perception by Lee Strauss

Perception by Lee Strauss

Seventeen year old Zoe Vanderveen is a GAP—a genetically altered person. She lives in the security of a walled city on prime water-front property along side other equally beautiful people with extended life spans.

Her brother Liam is missing.

Noah Brody is a natural who lives on the outside. He leads protests against the GAPs and detests the widening chasm they’ve created between those who have and those who don’t. He doesn’t like girls like Zoe and he has good reason not to like her specifically.

Zoe’s carefree life takes a traumatic turn.  She’s in trouble and it turns out that Noah, the last guy on earth she should trust, is the only one who can help her.

PERCEPTION is a ( SF/mystery/romance) Young Adult novel that takes place in the not too distant future in a world changed by climate extremes, natural disasters and impending wars, and where scientific breakthroughs cause class divisions—both financially and philosophically.  It explores the clash between faith and science and how differences can separate us as enemies or alliance us together. And in some cases, even in the midst of betrayal and personal crisis, there’s room to fall in love.
This is the first book in a planned three book series. 
My Thoughts:
     This is a wonderfully creative story.  Well planned and well paced.  I enjoyed the characters immensely.  What I fell in love with though was the idea behind the story.  The idea of people's perceptions: of themselves, of others and of what the world should be like.  
     I love the comparison of the belief systems of the two main characters, Zoe and Noah.  Noah's belief in faith and God drives him while Zoe believes in science, technology and the absence of religion.  Although they appear to be as different as two people can be, they find themselves believing in each other.
     This is not your typical "good vs evil" story.  Although there is an obvious bad guy, the story isn't necessarily about him or even a battle against him.  This also is not your typical YA love story.  It is a love story, it is about battles against good and evil, right and wrong.  Perception seemed to me to be more of a story of the battle each character has within themselves, what they believe and who the believe in and why.
     Lee Strauss has created a fantastic and harsh world.  She has filled that world with characters that fall into two categories, Naturals and GAPS, and the two groups are worlds apart on almost every level.  To achieve this variety takes insight, imagination, an open mind, and dedication to detail in every aspect of the story.  
     This is the beginning...I can't wait to read the rest!