Why Are There All These Blank Spaces?

You may notice that in some of my posts there are blank spaces in the reviews. These are spoilers that I've written so I can remember important details of the books when I want to read the sequel. I've made the text a beige color to blend in with the background so you won't accidentally see something you don't want to. If you want to read it, just highlight the section to make the text appear - although you should really just read the book yourself! :)

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


by Gloria Skursynski

It took me a while but I finally figured this book out. This book is the republished version of the first two books in a science-fiction series entitled The Virtual War Chronologs. Devastation contains books 1 (The Virtual War) and 2 (The Clones).

Since the books are so vastly different I will write about them separately first.

The Virtual War was the better of the two books. We start off by meeting Corgan, a 14-year-old boy who has lived his entire life in isolation, with his only company being a virtual world and computer program mother/father named Mendor. Corgan was created by the government to fight in the upcoming virtual war. The winning region will receive the Isles of Hiva - the last piece of land on Earth that humans can live on without the protection of giant domes. Corgan isn't fighting alone though - he's soon joined by his code-breaker Sharla and strategist Brig. While Corgan is used to obeying every command, Sharla is much more prone to breaking them, and it's not long before she starts telling Corgan things about the government he's never even dreamed.

In The Clones, Sharla is working on a new project - analyzing human DNA. Shortly into the novel we (and Corgan) learn that she has been working on making a clone of Brig. She started with 4, and 2 survived. The government only wants one and tells Sharla to destroy the other. She can't bring herself to do it, and so she brings the tiny baby Brig (named Seabrig) to Corgan and asks him to take care of it. Corgan is shocked to hear what Sharla's been up to, and even more shocked to learn that this version of Brig (as well as the Clone Sharla has kept, named Brigand) will mature at an incredible rate. Things get even more complicated when Sharla comes back a few months later with Brigand in tow, and the two clones (who now look about 12) will actually meet.

Like I said, The Virtual War was better than The Clones, despite having a rapid conclusion. The Clones doesn't seem to know what genre it is. It starts out much like the first book - as a sci-fi post-apocalyptic novel, but somewhere along the way it turns strange. Brigand can communicate with the boars? The cannibal kings have given him their power? It was strange and oddly reminiscent of The Lord of the Flies though this is supposed to be sci-fi, not fantasy fiction. I was confused. Some things got half-heartedly explained toward the end and it did improve from that point.

I might read the next book sometime.

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