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Paradox Hardcover – June 25, 2013


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 850L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers (June 25, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 037586962X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375869624
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.8 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,604,388 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Ana wakes up aboard a spaceship on an unfamiliar planet with a note informing her that she has “surgical retrograde amnesia.” Indeed, as she begins to explore, she finds she has no idea who she is or why she is there—though her muscle memory indicates that she has experience rock climbing and fighting. Soon she meets up with three other teen voyagers, all of whom are aware that they have 27 hours to reach a human colony on the coast before something dreadful happens. Their treacherous journey is further complicated in two ways: Ana begins to experience slivers of memory about a superflu brought back by the first explorers of this planet, and the teens are being pursued by a gigantic, sharp-toothed worm: “Long white teeth raging out of a cloud of reddish-brown dust.” Paquette’s main characters and primary action feel a bit perfunctory. However, the backstory, initially revealed through interspersed newspaper articles, presents the intriguing notion of memories as a kind of infection. The result is a delayed, but eventually worthwhile, payoff. Grades 7-10. --Daniel Kraus

Review

Kirkus Reviews, April 15, 2013:
"The fate of two worlds hangs in the balance in this unorthodox science-fiction thriller."

Booklist, June 1, 2013:
"The backstory, initially revealed through interspersed newspaper articles, presents the intriguing notion of memories as a kind of infection. The result is a delayed, but eventually worthwhile, payoff."

Library Media Connection:
"Enough intrigue to keep even a non-science fiction reader engaged.”

 

More About the Author

Ammi-Joan (A.J.) Paquette spent her formative years moving from place to place, which left her with an insatiable curiosity about the wide world and everything in it. A voracious reader since early childhood, she's thrilled to now be able to share her stories with readers everywhere. She lives outside of Boston, Massachusetts, where she balances her own writing and her day job as a literary agent. Visit her on the web at www.ajpaquette.com

Customer Reviews

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What a page turner!
Serenissima
A. J. Paquette's descriptions of the planet are fascinating, and the reader becomes involved with the characters and their mission.
Bmat
The writing was good but the plot was just too unbelievable.
funny girl

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Liviania VINE VOICE on June 26, 2013
Format: Hardcover
PARADOX is lean and mean, clocking in at 240 pages. There were times when I could've used more, especially in the latter parts of the novel. But I liked that A. J. Paquette didn't add a lot of padding. What's left is the essential parts of Ana's story. Ana wakes up on Paradox with surgical retrograde amnesia and a note telling her to experience, discover, and survive. It's a pretty confusing way to wake up.

Ana quickly discovers she's not alone on the planet. There's another boy, Todd, who also has amnesia. There's also a giant carnivorous worm. One of these discoveries is more pleasant than the other. Soon, it's a hostile race across the planet to the safety of the colony. But nothing is as it first appears, as Ana is assaulted by strange memories and observes some rather odd happenings.

Despite having no memory, Ana manages to carry the story well with her character. She's independent, tough, and clever. She doesn't have great social skills, but that's not hurting her too much on a far-off planet. It was fun to discover Paradox's secrets with Ana, no matter that some of them weren't hard to see coming.

I also liked the subtle but present diversity in PARADOX. Ana has tan skin, and when she discovers her last name, it is pretty clear that she's Hispanic. A character who shows up later is obviously Asian. And I love that between Todd and Ana, Todd is the scientist and Ana is the warrior. There's no explicit discussion of any of this, because it isn't important to the story. It's just there.

PARADOX blends adventure and horror with its science fiction trappings. I'm not entirely convinced that the plot hangs together, but I'm fascinated by the ideas it explores.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Serenissima on August 4, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Ana wakes on a mysterious planet with only the barest of clues as to who she is and what her mission is. From there, this story races forward, never letting up, until Ana uncovers the mystery and challenge of PARADOX. What a page turner!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By E. Kristin Anderson on July 24, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Leave it to A.J. Paquette to take the dystopian novel and turn it on its head. In PARADOX, Ana has recently woken on a strange, barren planet, with little other than her name (which she only remembers because of a tag pinned to her suit). Her mission? To survive.

Random House Books for Young Readers, June 2013.
Ana's memories are gone, and as she begins her trek toward she's not sure what, she's sure she's alone. But it's not long before she realizes she's, in fact, not the only living creature here. There's a giant, worm-like creature, seemingly in pursuit of her, and as her fear heightens, so does her determination to make it out alive. But the worm isn't the only other life here. There's a boy, dressed in the same suit as her, presumably from the same ship as her, who says he knows the way to the colony, where there are other people and supplies. Ana knows they should team up, but she has reservations. When there are no memories to guide you, who can you trust? And what is real?

PARADOX is a gripping novel of survival against the odds, and of the persistance of the human spirit. This is a book that will keep you reading until the middle of the night, straining to keep your eyes open, hoping you can get in just one more chapter. A new twist on dystopia? A.J. Paquette totally nailed it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Michelle @ In Libris Veritas on July 18, 2013
Format: Hardcover
I received this book in exchange for an honest review.

Paradox is unique, intense and fast paced post apocalyptic adventure that takes us across the landscape of Paradox, where Ana and three other teens must survive in order to complete their mysterious mission. However they run into trouble in the form of one seriously huge and persist ant worm.

Paradox is written in 3rd person, which is a bit odd at first and I did initially have some trouble falling into the story but once it got started and the mystery becomes incredibly thick I couldn't put it down. This is the sort of book where you truly have no idea what's happening until it's revealed piece by piece, you have to wait it out. It's a bit frustrating at first because there is clearly some info not being shared but at the same time it pushed me to keep reading until the last page. The overall plot I thought was fantastic, it's certainly different and not at all what I was expecting.

The planet of Paradox is a beautifully odd place and extremely creepy at times. I love the details that Paquette gives us from the pink sky to the shifting purple sands. The one down fall with the world building is the lack of actual explanation as to what is happening. There are a few `news clippings' in between chapters that clue you in on things happening on Earth before and after the initial exploration trips, and it helped explain some things but I think I would have liked some more overall.

As the summary says we meet Ana when she has no memory of who she is or why she is on the planet of Paradox, and I initially worried about how much I was actually going to get to know her. However she turned out to be a great character. She's strong, brave, and very willing to go the distance needed in order to survive.
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