Saturday, November 26, 2011

My thoughts on "Scored" by Lauren McLaughlin

ScoredScored by Lauren McLaughlin

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

(from Goodreads)

Set in the future when teenagers are monitored via camera and their recorded actions and confessions plugged into a computer program that determines their ability to succeed. All kids given a "score" that determines their future potential. This score has the ability to get kids into colleges, grant scholarships, or destroy all hope for the above. Scored's reluctant heroine is Imani, a girl whose high score is brought down when her best friend's score plummets. Where do you draw the line between doing what feels morally right and what can mean your future? Friendship, romance, loyalty, family, human connection and human value: all are questioned in this fresh and compelling dystopian novel set in the scarily foreseeable future.

I have mixed feelings about this book and I wish there were half stars because I would have given this book 3.5 stars.

I read this book in one night which says something...first I have to say that this book flowed really well and so it was easy to keep reading w/out taking breaks (even though the book was just over 200pg)...

The story is a dystopian where there are cameras everywhere that record all teenagers. That's right, teenagers. The whole idea behind this story is that in this world you have to have a high enough score in order for any university/college in the state will be paid for you (a scholarship from ScoreCorp who owns all the cameras, etc and runs this whole 'program'). And with only a handful of people that can actually afford to pay for their kids to go to college this is very important.

There are 5 elements that you are scored on and those can greatly affect your score. One of the things that will affect your score is the people you hang out with. If you hang out with someone that is scored lower then you (the 60s, 70s, 80s, etc all stick together) then your score will drop. In order to get a scholarship you need to be scored in the upper 90s...and that isn't get a job at all (if you can't afford to go to college) you need to score over a certain number. So these scores are very important.

The main character, Imani, has a score in the 90s and believes strongly in Score Corp, although not everyone does. Imanis score drops drastically through something that was no fault of her own, and she is desperate to get her score back up. Imani is already a senior and has limited time to do this. Because of her desperation she agrees to work on a her American History's final paper with a non-scored, Diego (which is the worst thing you can do)-but she has another agenda that doesn't turn out the way she expected. Imani learns some things she didn't know and is left to decide if she still believes in Score Corp. like she did before or not...

This story was very interesting and it kept me reading til almost 4am. The characters were great, but the idea of the book is what I liked the best. Cameras that track everything teenagers do. Even on the streets. Their body language, facial expressions and interprets all of that.

The whole idea of this book to me was sort of scary. Not because of the whole 'big brother' thing, but because of the things that affect your score. The people you hang out with?? Wow...You learn that you are the only one you need to worry about and no one else. You can't form any close relationships and don't even think about dating...

I really liked how the author talked about our world now (the past in the book) and made you see things differently and what could happen or already did happen.

The things I wasn't too happy about with this book is the fact that the a big chunk of the book is spent with Imani and Diego, working on this paper, and discovering things along the way, but then in the end it is was about something else. I felt as if the ending was not developed enough and the whole paper thing didn't properly end. I felt like the basis for the story was being built, and it was great, but the climax didn't really happen. The ending fell flat to me.

I hope that makes some sort of sense.

Anyway, the story was a good read and if there is another book then maybe some of my misgivings on this book will be cleared up.

View all my reviews

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