Title: The Water Wars
Author: Cameron Stracher
Author: Cameron Stracher
Genre: YA/ Dystopian
First off, let's start with the cover for this book... Amazing, right?! I helped pick it. [I took part in the poll that helped choose the cover ... so, you're quite welcome (brushes shoulders off)- haha]. Secondly, let's talk about the very seductive premise to this story. I mean we've seen all sorts of dystopian story lines as of late (i.e. zombies, war, lack of oil, even too much water), but this is the first story where I've read where it's the water that is scarce.
The world's inhabitants live in a parched world where you can literally feel their thirst. Imagine how important water is for even the minimalist things.... like a common cold for instance. Without water and being properly hydrated you can just imagine the complications your body might suffer. Well, that is the world that Vera and her brother Will live in. While waiting for her bus to school one day, Vera meets Kai. Kai, who isn't suffering from the same waterless existence as everyone else... who is driven to school in a limo, has bodyguards and lives in a very posh home. As their friendship grows, Vera and Kai begin to develop stronger feelings for one another. And then one day, Kai disappears. Vera and Will set off to find him and won't let anything stand in their way until they are reunited.
Mr. Stracher has phenomenal world-building skills. Not only was I enthralled by the world unfolding in the pages of The Water Wars but for some reason I kept getting up to get glass after glass of water. Reading of this waterless world made me dang thirsty the whole time I was reading it.
While I did find the world-building suspenseful and creative, I had a hard time liking the characters. Vera, our narrator, was not someone I could relate to. Sadly, she was not very memorable at all. It was like living the story through her eyes but not really getting the full emotions of it. Her friendship/relationship with Kye was brief, rushed and the ensuing adventure/danger, felt unwarranted after knowing someone for only a few short weeks. That's just my opinion though.
I also had a slight problem with the overall message of the story. Don't take me wrong, I'm all about "going green" and saving the planet, but I really don't like when this message comes across in a preachy/propaganda-ish manner. I also found it strange that Vera (the narrator) is a girl, when the book totally feels like a "boy" story to me (that may also be a boy on the cover)... hmmmm. I truly tried to enjoy this story, but it just didn't live up to my expectations.
All in all, this was a fast-paced story, full of adventure, danger, mystery and even some (very mild) romance. I honestly cannot say I would recommend this one since I felt the characters were too under-developed to be ignored, but if you can overlook that and just enjoy the action sequences, then you might want to check it out. For me, it just fell flat.