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It's 2077. There's no apocalypse, but some things are different. Things like the weather, the Internet, and food. In 12-year-old Clare's world, blueberry is just a flavor and apples are found only in fairy tales.
Then one day Clare meets Ana, an older woman who teaches her about seeds and real food. Ana tempts Clare with the notion that food exists other than the square, packaged food she has always known. With Ana's guidance, Clare and her friends learn about seeds and gardening despite suspicions that such actions are illegal.
When the authorities discover the children's forbidden tomato plant and arrest their mother, Clare and her brother flee. Clare has heard of a place called The Garden State and with their bikes, a little money, and backpacks, the children begin a lonely cross-country journey that tests them both physically and spiritually. Will they succeed in their quest to find a place of food freedom? And can they, only children, help change the world?
Treasure is a gentle dystopian, frightening only is the possibility that we may not be far from the future it paints. First in a five book series.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By AudioBook Reviewer on 12-20-17
real food is a thing of the past
In a world where seeds have become a monopoly, and where real food is a thing of the past, some people are trying to go back to the old ways. But they have to be careful and act in secret because these actions are illegal, and the big corporations are always alert.
The premises of this dystopian story were really good, especially because it is something that could become a reality at some point. The book is targeted at a young audience since the main characters are seven and twelve. The story is interesting and I think kids could really enjoy it.
Unfortunately, there is little world-building, which makes the book a bit flat. We know what people eat, and that big corporations control the seeds market, but there are no more details about the cities or the society. I understand that being this a book for children, Smith didn't see the need of going into much detail, but I think even young readers like to know the world in which the action occurs. Trains still exist, but we know nothing about buildings, cars, pollution, clothes, gadgets, etc. I think including a little bit more information would have been a cool detail that children would appreciate.
Another big issue I found is that there is quite some religion in this book. The fact that seeds were mentioned in the Bible, and the fact that this is used to teach the children is a good idea, and I don't mind that. But there is progressively more and more religion in the book. One of the main characters prays in many occasions for things to get better, and it is also mentioned that things happen for some reason. I just hate indoctrination, and while I respect religious people, I disagree about many things. Praying doesn't make things to happen, acting does, and sometimes things just don't happen. Also, affirming that things happen for a reason can help some people to cope with events, but this doesn't make it more real, and I think it's important for children to know this. Growing is about assuming responsibilities, not thinking that something bigger will save you if you pray very hard.
It surprised me a bit that there was not a lot about the health benefits of eating real food. If there is something in me believing that the situation in this book will not happen is the increasing amount of people trying to eat healthy to avoid illness. Unfortunately, there are nowadays a lot of ailments, many of the immune disorders, resulting from a poor diet and especially processed foods. This is one of the key factors for which I think we will resist and not fall into the destiny described in this book.
Julia Farmer delivered a good narration, putting the right amount of emotion and expression when interpreting the characters. Her children's voices were great. The only drawback is that sometimes both siblings sounded the same, which was a bit confusing.
It was an okay book, but I would only recommend it to children in religious families. There is just too much religion for other audiences.
Audiobook was provided for review by the author.
Please find this complete review and many others at my review blog.
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1 of 1 people found this review helpful
By Calinurseguy on 06-22-17
Please read and pay attention
I received this title for free in exchange for an unbiased review. Excellent story all around it does give you moments of thought important especially for young readers. We need diversity and genetic engineering is a big concern now a days. Ms. Farmer's narration is excellent right on the money, perfect for the storyline
1 of 1 people found this review helpful