Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Extras by Scott Westerfeld

Title: Extras
Author: Scott Westerfeld
ISBN: 9781416951179, Simon Pulse, 2007
Genre: Young Adult Fiction
Rating: B

First Line: "Moggle," Aya whispered. "You awake?"

It is now several years after the massive shift of Specials, the third in Westerfeld's Uglies series. 15-year-old Aya Fuse will do anything to boost her public name recognition, which is essential in the current "recognition economy". Yes...a celebrity-based system has now replaced the boring, brainless cult of Pretties. You have to have a high name rank in order to get any real perks in life. What Asa doesn't know is that the story that she follows is a dangerous one that will have many repercussions.

I have really enjoyed this series. Westerfeld is extremely talented in mining rich themes from today's culture and spinning them into engrossing stories. That said, I think this book is the weakest in the series. There are too many secondary characters, and some of the action is a bit difficult to follow. I do love how Westerfeld's mind works though. Tally Youngblood risked life and limb to change the world, only to have the world shift to this "recognition economy" which is just as shallow as the Pretties cult was. The world Westerfeld envisions is all too close to the world we have today, and that gives me plenty to ponder.

As a reader, I was reading Young Adult books well before the age of twelve, and I jumped straight into adult fiction. One of the things that book blogging has done for me is to make me aware of how much excellent writing is being done in the Young Adult category, and I'm enjoying the time I spend reading it. Westerfeld is now one of my favorite authors, and I'll keep a look-out for any of his future books.


  1. I really want to read this series. I'm glad to see it's holding up.

  2. Same thing with me, I started adult novels at 10-12 and now i have started to look back at YA.
    I saw the 2nd part of this series today so I think I will go and find book 1

  3. I fully intend to start this series this year...

  4. I'm with Beth F. - I plan to start this series by the end of the year too!

    You know..growing up I went from kids books to adult books. So I feel I missed a lot of good young adult books. I'm so glad that other adults are reading a lot of YA these days, because I've loved reading them myself.

  5. Unfortunately, when I was at the age for YA we didn't have the tremendous rich depth of selection that is out on the market today. So, I too have really embraced the YA market. When I was the media specialist in middle school I was able to purchase the YA books. I got first crack at them. Loved that part of my job. :)

  6. Kathy--It's a marvelous series. I hope you enjoy reading it!

    Blodeuedd--The first two books were the strongest, in my humble opinion, but it's well worth reading the entire series.

    Beth--Good luck! It's not as if we were starving for books to read, is it? LOL

    Kris-- I guess it goes to show that many of us have no intentions of growing up! :)

    Wisteria-- That would definitely be a perk of the job. I felt the same way, growing up with my mother the librarian. I always had first crack at the new books.

  7. I agree with you - its a great series but this is the weakest of the bunch. Westerfeld's other books are great, too. I really liked Peeps and Last Days.

  8. Another older Westerfeld book that my teenage daughter and I both enjoyed is So Yesterday.

  9. Lorin--Thanks for the recommendations! I'll have to check them out.

    Jeanne--Thanks! I've added this one to my list, too!


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