Sunday, October 2, 2011

Book review: Tomorrow Girls: Set Me Free by Eva Gray

Tomorrow Girls: Set Me Free by Eva Gray (Published by Scholastic, November 1, 2011)

Set Me Free is the fourth and final book in the Tomorrow Girls series, and begins right where book three, With the Enemy, ended. This series is about four young girls, Louisa, Evelyn, Maddie, and Rosie, who were sent to a boarding school to keep them safe during a war between the United States and the Alliance, which happened after natural disasters destroyed part of the United States. However the girls soon learned that the school was secretly run by the Alliance and successfully escaped, joining up with three boys from the nearby boys' school. After traveling many miles and enduring many difficulties, including rescuing Maddie after she was kidnapped by Alliance agents and taken away to be brainwashed, the kids have finally made it back to their home city of Chicago.

Each book has been narrated by a different girl, and so for the last book, the narrator is Maddie. Maddie is probably the character who changed the most from the start of the series. At the beginning, she was rather timid and not as strong as the other girls. However, she has become stronger and braver, especially after learning that her absent mother, who she thought had a support job in the army, is actually the leader of the Resistance, which is the military organization that fights to defeat the Alliance. Now, Maddie and her friends must find her mother and the Resistance to give them an important encoded message, but finding them in war-torn Chicago won't be easy.

Set Me Free is, overall, a pretty good conclusion to the Tomorrow Girls series, it doesn't end with a cliffhanger and the storylines for all the main characters are resolved. I was disappointed by a couple of things, however - we never find out what happened to some of the minor characters, nor is the exact reason for the war ever explained, in fact it's never explained what exactly the Alliance is or where they came from. This series is a good choice for introducing younger readers to the dystopian genre, and for older readers looking for a quick read. I just wish there had been a bit more background information, because I'm still left wondering why there was even a war in the first place.

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