Alright y’all, who’s surprised that I read yet another sci-fi dystopian novel? Not me! For some reason I always get drawn to the novels about our broken future in which technology is crazy cool and the people are flawed. Luckily for me, Street Freaks by Terry Brooks had just that.
It begins with a dire call—right before his father disappears and his skyscraper home’s doors explode inward. It is the kind of thrilling futuristic story only New York Times bestselling author Terry Brooks can tell.
“Go into the Red Zone. Go to Street Freaks.” his father directs Ashton Collins before the vid feed goes suddenly silent. The Red Zone is the dangerous heart of the mega-city of Los Angeles; it is a world Ash is forbidden from and one he knows little about. But if he can find Street Freaks, the strangest of aid awaits—human and barely human alike. As Ash is hunted, he must unravel the mystery left behind by his father and discover his role in this new world.
Brooks has long been the grandmaster of fantasy. Now he turns his hand to science fiction filled with what his readers love best: complex characters, extraordinary settings, exciting action, and a page-turning story. Through it, Brooks reimagines his bestselling career yet again.
Here are the things I loved about this novel:
1. It jumps into the storyline very quickly. Sometimes I pick up a novel and I spend a good couple chapters stuck reading about what someone’s house looks like or the color of a characters hair. Sometimes those chapters are important. However I appreciated that despite being descriptive, Terry Brooks jumped right into the story line. It practically starts with Ash escaping – so if you’re needing a high-action, fast paced book, this is it.
2. It has a unique premise. There is so much to discuss after reading this novel. For one, there is the question of genetically altering humans. There is the question of what is human, and what is not – when does a machine begin to be a human? With the current rise of AI, there is the question of free thought. For someone who loves technology, Street Freaks had a lot to explore.
Another thing that I found very unique was how racing and street cars were brought into the mix. I feel like usually, science fiction writers tend to make everything completely brand new, but in this case, Terry Brooks allowed a current obsession (for some people anyways) to be a big part of the novel. I really enjoyed that, and I didn’t know what to expect from page to page.
3. Illustrations!!! You guys already know how much I love illustrations. These, of course were very cartoon like, but they still caught my eye and helped with making a little more sense of how certain things in this unknown future world looked like.
There were two smallish things that I didn’t really like.
1. Repetitive descriptions– in particular, during the racing, or in other situations where Ash was “new” or “inexperienced”, I felt like certain parts of the setting were drilled into your head over and over. I like my descriptions to be subtly worked into the reading, but thats personal preference.
2. The ending chapter read like an epilogue. It switched over from being in the present tense, to a kind of “fast forward” where everything was wrapped up carefully and all loose ends were cleaned up, except the one where I assume the author will be continuing the novel in another book. Don’t get me wrong, I love epilogues and I love when theres a happy ending, but please don’t smoosh it into a random chapter for me.
Would recommend to: Anyone who enjoys cars and racing, and action. This novel reads as YA, so if you would prefer something a little more mature, then maybe this isn’t for you
Publication Date: October 2nd, 2018
Are you planning on reading this one? What are you currently reading?