Sunday, August 8, 2010

Book Review: Carbon Diaries 2015 by Saci Lloyd

Laura Brown is a typical British teen writing in her diary about the year the UK decided to implement strict carbon rationing. Each resident is issued a card with a certain amount of credits and each has to make some hard choices about how to use them. Laura’s family doesn’t deal well with the changes (to say the least) – will everyone make it through 2015 alive?

While I liked the concept of a focusing on a family trying to transition from the freewheeling life they’ve always known to a more meager form of existence, the diary entries tend to ramble and there isn’t much in the way of an overreaching plot.

I did think Laura’s voice was extraordinarily well done, and I loved the way she could see the humor in the little things even as her family life starts to collapse. It often felt very much like a screwball comedy, which is very unusual for the genre, but it works.

I particularly like this passage from a section where Laura accompanies her parents on a survivalist camping adventure in the countryside:

Huh, I got totally bullied by a gang of ponies on the way back from the shop. I was innocently crossing a field when a squinty black pony shot out from under some trees and went for my pack of Munster Munch. And then a load of others came up behind him. It was dead scary. I had to surrender the Monsters and make a run for it. When I looked back they were all tearing at the plastic like piranhas. The countryside is so brutal. p 210

Umm…and that’s really all I have to say, other than I doubt I’ll read the sequel. My rating: 2 Zombie Chickens - Entertaining but not essential.

Series order
Carbon Diaries 2015
Carbon Diaries 2017

Find out more about the books at the author's website.


bermudaonion said...

I really like the concept of that book, so I'm disappointed to see it's a stinker.

Lenore Appelhans said...

Kathy - I wouldn't call it a stinker at all. It's good, just not the best of the genre, in my opinion.

Trisha said...

"Screwball comedy" meets dystopian lit? That's a new one. I'm not sure it would work for me though. I like my dystopia all scary and creepy and dark - hmm...not sure what that says about me. :)

Lenore Appelhans said...

Trisha - It's new to me too! I do generally prefer mine darker as well.

Ana S. said...

I have to say you've got me curious. Good but not essential can be good enough sometimes :P

Zibilee said...

Sounds like a really cool concept that sort of floundered a little. I am not sure I would read this one, but I appreciated hearing your thoughts on it!

theliterarylollipop said...

What a fantastic header you have on your blog! And the zombie chickens is such a great idea. So creative.

This series sounds interesting. It's an unusual angle to take for YA, which is intriguing. Maybe I'll check it out at the library.

Iris on Books said...

The premise sounds good and I love love love the cover, but I guess sometimes that isn't enough to make a book great reading!

Unknown said...

Great review! This book sounds really interesting.

You have an award on my blog here.

Serena said...

the concept of this book sounds interesting, but it doesn't seem to have enough of the dystopian elements I would assume to be in it.