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Fair Coin Hardcover – March 27, 2012


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Hardcover: 287 pages
  • Publisher: Pyr (March 27, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1616146095
  • ISBN-13: 978-1616146092
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 1 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (48 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #929,285 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Winner of the 2012 Andre Norton Award for Young Adult Science Fiction/Fantasy Book!

"Warning: This Book is Pure Awesome Crack. Tired of cookie-cutter young-adult novels? . . . [Fair Coin] achieves the feat of seeming like a dark fairy tale and a clever science fiction epic rolled into one. It's a fast-moving book full of twists and cool character moments and is definitely ideal for adults who miss the days of engaging, idea-driven science fiction."
-io9

"Funny, flirtatious, and unexpectedly poignant, Fair Coin takes the phrase 'be careful what you wish for' and runs with it. A stand-out debut from an author to watch."
-LAUREN MCLAUGHLIN, author of Scored

"[A] well-written, fast-paced, EPIC adventure. There are plot twists you will never see coming and enough science fiction elements to satisfy even the hungriest nerd brain! In my opinion, it accurately portrays . . . what teenagers would do if they had the entire universe at their disposal."
-MOTHER/GAMER/WRITER

"I thoroughly loved this book. Rather than finding just another same-old, same-old book, this one smashed through the mold. . . . I highly recommend [Fair Coin] to all fans of YA, especially those who enjoy male MCs, science fiction, and fantasy."
-I SWIM FOR OCEANS

"This one reminded me a lot of Scott Westerfeld's The Uglies. There's so much to love here: madcap adventure, chewy theoretical physics, realistic angst, serious stakes leavened by hilarious snark. The kind of book smart kids will love."
-N. K. JEMISIN, author of the Inheritance Trilogy

"A refreshingly unique read. . . . I loved the characters, I loved the concept, and most of all, I loved how immersed I was in the story."
-HOPELESSLY DEVOTED BIBLIOPHILE

"Myers has written a novel that makes the reader think. . . . It is humorous, emotional, and complex in a refreshing way, and I think it's a book that anyone who enjoys science fiction could really love."
-LITERARY OBSESSION

"Cerebral science fiction with enough romance and two-fisted action to keep it from getting too bogged down in its own ideas. A great read for just about anyone."
-GUYS LIT WIRE

About the Author

E.C. Myers was assembled from Korean and German parts in Yonkers, New York, where he was raised jointly by a mother and the public library. He is a graduate of the Clarion West Writers Workshop and a member of the prolific NYC writing group Altered Fluid. In the rare moments when he isn't writing, he blogs about Star Trek at theviewscreen.com, plays video games, watches classic films and television, sleeps as little as possible, and spends too much time on the internet. To find out more about E.C. Myers and his activities, short story publications, and novels, visit ecmyers.net, or find him on Twitter @ecmeyers.

Customer Reviews

Even Ephraim's mother is a very real and relatable character.
Melanie McCullough
I highly recommend this book to sci fi lovers or anyone else who enjoys a good story and interesting characters.
Amazon Customer
The characters were very believable, well developed and I very much enjoyed the writers style.
mm

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Lisa (Starmetal Oak Reviews) on March 13, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Let's start by saying how much I enjoyed reading a smart young adult novel that wasn't a dystopia and didn't have the usual love triangle. The story follows Ephraim Scott, whose life changes when he finds a coin with Washington's head facing the wrong way commemorating the state of Puerto Rico. He discovers that when he makes a wish a flips the coin, it comes true. Or close to true.

For the first half of the novel, Ephraim uses this newfound power to take care of all the things gone wrong in his life. His mom's a drunk and he likes a girl named Jena. Of course, this magic coin ends up being used on girls. Things start to go wrong when other things in Ephraim's world changes along with his wish. People become different, events rearrange themselves.

I felt like there was a lot of this "discovery" phase for Ephraim - nothing particular happening for quite a while except making wishes and seeing how they turn out. Not until he shares this power with his best friend Nathan does things really start to go downhill. Actually, the whole story changes in that it becomes a science fiction thriller with a very human bad guy with a gun.

There are a lot of things to like about Fair Coin. All the characters: Ephraim, Nathan, Jena feel like real teenagers. Their minds are preoccupied on their crushes and other shallow things - I wanted Ephraim to do something selfless with the coin but he never quite gets there. On top of that, I felt like Ephraim didn't have any real feelings for Jena other than her being cute and smart, and still he bases almost all his choices on her.

Towards the end we get the big reveal - I thought it would be the end of the story, but it actually opens up a whole new plot with scary villain and some intriguing science.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Christina (A Reader of Fictions) on September 3, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Who wouldn't want a magic coin that would grant wishes? I mean, even though pop culture (Fair Coin included) tells me that such things are not to be trusted, I would still be ALL over that. Ephraim uses this mysterious coin he finds liberally and largely unquestioningly, like a kid devouring the entire Halloween candy haul in one sitting, unconcerned with the inevitable consequences. While there is nothing new about the magic wish plot line, there's something very compelling about it, thus why it lingers in our collective imaginations. Even knowing the risks, how many humans would be able to resist the temptation to change everything with a thought?

The first half of Fair Coin was a bit slow-going. I liked Myers' writing, but I was hoping for more from the concept and characters. Well, let me just say that the book really takes off in the second half, which I'll talk about later on, as that bit might be somewhat spoilerific. For now, I want to talk about the characters, which may be somewhat complicated, since after every wish the same people are a bit different.

Ephraim, our hero, really is not very heroic, especially early on. Sure, I just talked about how I would totally go gaga for a magic coin and make the most of it, but Ephraim makes wishes like they're about to go out of style. Where some people might have a natural, healthy skepticism about this object and how beneficial and trustworthy it is, Ephraim just sort of assumes that it will grant his wishes and everything will be awesome. He also has very little conscience about some of the things that he wishes, totally willing to mess with others for his own gain at first. It even takes him a surprisingly long time to start worrying even after he notices changes unrelated to his wishes occurring.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By MyBookishWays on July 26, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Ephraim Scott's life could be better. He comes home to find his mother unconscious with pills all over the floor, and realizes that she thinks he's dead. A trip to the hospital confirms that a boy his age has indeed been killed in a bus accident; a boy that happens to look just like him, and has a library card with his name on it. Ok, maybe the library made a mistake, and hasn't it been said that everyone has a twin somewhere? Ephraim could live with these explanations, until he finds the coin, and the note telling him to flip it and make a wish. What can possibly go wrong, right?

The ways that things can go wrong are pretty much endless in Fair Coin, author EC Myers's debut novel. At first, after Eph makes a wish on the coin, things seem to be better. He wishes that his mother wasn't so messed up, and waking up to the smell of bacon and coffee, his mom in the kitchen getting ready for her office job (instead of a job at the local ShopRite), is most certainly a step in the right direction. Then there's the girl he's crazy about, the geeky cool Jena. Maybe wishing she'd like him would help steer things in the right direction, yes? When things start changing for the worst, namely some alarming (and violent) changes in his best friend Nathan, Ephraim decides to get rid of the coin, with disastrous results.

I liked Eph. Really, I did. In spite of him being a pretty horny teen (a nice pair of, um, lungs, could distract him like you wouldn't believe), he really did try to do the right thing, even when things started going to hell. And boy did they. Let's put it this way, the coin is no monkey's paw (you know, magic talisman, three wishes?), although it may remind you of one. Actually, the coin is part of something much bigger, and much more complex than Eph could have imagined.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews


More About the Author

E.C. Myers is the author of the Norton Award-winning FAIR COIN, QUANTUM COIN, and THE SILENCE OF SIX. He was assembled in the U.S. from Korean and German parts and raised in Yonkers, NY by his mother and the public library. He is a graduate of the Clarion West Writers Workshop and a member of the prolific NYC writing group Altered Fluid. In the rare moments when he isn't writing, he blogs about Star Trek at theviewscreen.com, reads constantly, plays video games, watches films and television, sleeps as little as possible, and spends far too much time on the internet.

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