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Dark Days

Dark Days

4.0 6
by Kate Ormand

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The future world has been divided into sectors—each the same as the other. Surrounded by thick steel fences, there is no way in and no way out. Yet a cyborg army penetrates each sector, picking off its citizens one by one, until no one is left. Behind the sectors’ thick walls, the citizens wait to die. Few will be chosen to survive what’s coming;


The future world has been divided into sectors—each the same as the other. Surrounded by thick steel fences, there is no way in and no way out. Yet a cyborg army penetrates each sector, picking off its citizens one by one, until no one is left. Behind the sectors’ thick walls, the citizens wait to die. Few will be chosen to survive what’s coming; the rest will be left behind to suffer. A new world has been created, and its rulers are incredibly selective on who will become a citizen. They want only those with important roles in society to help create a more perfect future.

Sixteen-year-old Sia lives in one of the sectors as part of a family that is far too ordinary to be picked to live. According to the digital clock that towers high above her sector, she has only fifteen days to live. Sia has seen the reports and knows a horrific death is in store for her, but she is determined to make the most of her final days. Sia refuses to mourn her short life, instead promising herself that she’ll stay strong, despite being suffocated by her depressed mother and her frightened best friend. Just when Sia feels more alone than ever, she meets Mace, a mysterious boy. There is something that draws Sia to him, despite his dangerousness, and together, they join a group of rebels and embark on an epic journey to destroy the new world and its machines, and to put an end to the slaughter of innocent people.

Sky Pony Press, with our Good Books, Racehorse and Arcade imprints, is proud to publish a broad range of books for young readers—picture books for small children, chapter books, books for middle grade readers, and novels for young adults. Our list includes bestsellers for children who love to play Minecraft; stories told with LEGO bricks; books that teach lessons about tolerance, patience, and the environment, and much more. While not every title we publish becomes a New York Times bestseller or a national bestseller, we are committed to books on subjects that are sometimes overlooked and to authors whose work might not otherwise find a home.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Chilling and all too plausible. . . . Readers are going to love Dark Days.” —Emma Pass, author of Acid

"Deadly cyborgs in the grimmest of worlds with a heroine who still dares to hope. The pages utterly flew by." —Elsie Chapman, author of the Dualed series

School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—In a dystopian future, 16-year-old Sia awakes with just fifteen days to live before her sector is destroyed and she is murdered by a cyborg army, along with everyone she knows. After climate change took out most of the living creatures on Earth, the remaining people were rounded up into sectors to keep them safe. Eventually, walls were built around the sectors, and a leader with a desire to create a New World emerged. This New World would be inhabited by only the best people, and everyone else would be destroyed. Sia's sector is dominated by constant reports of the horrors to come via television, and a digital clock with red numbers that counts down the days left to live, so she creates a short, four-item bucket list: swim in the lake, spend time with her parents, kiss a boy, and fall in love. In addition to checking off items on her list, the protagonist also participates in a rebellion against the cyborg army. With a half-baked plan for rebellion, a weak romance, and a countdown clock as a poorly disguised plot device, readers may not get lost in Sia's world. This title does not stand up to others in the genre, but if your teens absolutely can't get enough views of our potential future on this planet, consider making a place for this.—Heather Acerro, Rochester Public Library, MN

Product Details

Sky Pony Press
Publication date:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range:
12 Years

Meet the Author

Kate Ormand, an English writer, recently graduated from university with a BA in fine art painting. In her spare time, Kate loves long walks with her cocker spaniel, Freddy; reading teen novels; and painting her nails. This is her first novel. She lives with her family, her partner, and her dog in Cheshire, United Kingdom.

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Dark Days 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was a really good read. I felt like it was missing something but overall I really enjoyed it.
224perweek More than 1 year ago
This was a great story. Exciting from start to finish. Very unique story line also. Have never read anything like this.Really would like to read more about these characters. Hope there is more coming.
TheBumbleGirl1 More than 1 year ago
One of the most creepy dystopian/sci-fis I have read! This book kept me on the edge of my seat; made my heart race, palms sweat; and kept me up all night... Sia has lived her entire life holed up in her sector having never stepped foot past the iron walls that surround it. Their world is gray and bleak. Having never seen flowers, trees or stepped on grass, Sia is trying to keep herself distracted by creating the most mundane bucket list anyone has ever seen. But when you only have 15 days left to live, what else is there to do? There is no sense in panicking, rioting or anything else. It would only cause death to come to your door that much faster. Sia has shut down her feelings and deals with the most heartbreaking moments by suppressing all of her emotions. At times it was hard for me to understand her detachment to such life changing events. But then again, I am not the one who is facing death in just a few short days. No one can predict how they would react to anything when they're faced with knowing that everyone around them, including themselves, will no longer exist because they were not deemed worthy to bring anything to the "new world". No one will survive the cyborgs that are coming... There are a lot of ups and downs, twists and turns, action pact moments. What really kept me captivated was that the chapters were numbered to countdown to the day that Sia's sector was going to be destroyed. It was really stressful to read through the chapters as the numbers went down and it got closer and closer to the inevitable. I am really hanging on to the hope that there will be a book two! This book was an amazing introduction to an intriguing new world and has given me hope for these memorable and genuine characters. The ending was a really well done cliffhanger; I usually despise cliffhangers. But, the author gave me all I needed to get by for now. But every time I think of this book, or see it, or anything - I crave to know more!!! What is happening right now? How did the world get to be like this? Why is this government so twisted? Why send these killing machines in to destroy innocent lives? Why not just let them starve, or let them die of something else... less morbid? There are a whole lot of other questions that I have too and I'm hoping that ANOTHER BOOK will help answer them! If you love dystopian books with a sci-fi twist, add this to the top of your TBR. And if you don't, then you really need to go out of your comfort zone... it will blow your mind! *An annotated hardcover was won in a giveaway from the author. The annotations or the author herself have not influenced my review. All thoughts are my own.
DesPutaski More than 1 year ago
How would you feel if a clock in the center of town told you exactly how many days you had to live? That’s exactly what happens in this book. 15 days. They have 15 days to accept the fact they are going to die…15 days to fulfill your bucket list…. 15 days. I really liked the premise of this book. I’ve read books where authors have set a time limit on their plot line; some pull this off really well and some not so much. Ms. Ormand does a good job of pulling it off. There’s not a lot of back story, because that isn’t what this story is about. The reader is taken on a journey with these characters over those 15 days. How do they cope with the knowledge? Do they accept this turn of fate? It was interesting seeing how the inhabitants of the sector took the news, each in their own way. There is tragedy and anger, new friendships and love. While this story is about the here and now, and the reader is given a great idea about the sector and even a glimpse into the “New World”, I wish that we would have been given a little more history on why the sectors were created. And I really would have liked to have found out exactly who Damien Hoist was and how he came to be in power. He was the leader that hand-picked families from each sector to inhabit the New World. Those who were not chosen were killed by the cyborgs. Not that the story lacks without this information, I guess it would just satisfy my curiosity more than anything. Sia is a great character. She’s a teenager, so yes, her reactions to some situations might come across as juvenile; but that’s exactly what she is. Her reactions were believable for the most part. Once she comes into her own and realizes that she might not have to accept her fate without a fight, she becomes pretty bad ass. I would have liked to have known a little more about Mace, but again, that is just to satisfy myself. Sia’s dad, while a major player in the later chapters of the book, is absent from the first half. But once we get to know him I like him. He’s willing to do whatever it takes to save Sia and his friends. Overall, this was a quick, fun read. There were a few holes here and there that I felt that a little more information could have been given. A bit more history on the beginning of the sectors and how Damien Hoist came to be in power. And the ending was a little rushed. This isn’t part of a series (at least not that I know), so the whole story had to be told in this book. It started off strong and sucked me right in, but once I hit the last two chapters I felt like I was being rushed through it all and the awesome attention to detail that was given in the beginning was being left behind. It’s still a good story and if you like dystopian you will enjoy this book.
BookLoversLife1 More than 1 year ago
The blurb pretty much tells you everything so I'm not going to rehash it. I love Dystopian and Post Apocalyptic books and when I read the blurb I was sold. Well Dark Days was awesome.  I loved the fact that the book is set to a deadline. They have 15 days left to live and the clock shows it. Every chapter was a new day so we had the added suspense of seeing the time tick down. You see Day whatever on the chapter header and as it gets closer and closer to Day 0 I was like, uh oh!! Whats going to happen today. Sia was a very real character. She knows how long is left and after the initial crying etc, she decides to be resigned to her fate. She makes a list of the top 5 things she wants to do before she dies. Like spending time with her mother and father and climbing the forbidden hill. Will she get these things done though??  I loved seeing how much her character grew through out the book. She is resigned to death but after meeting Mace and seeing that there may be hope after all she decides that, yes, life is for living! She started out as weak but slowly came out of her shell and grows a backbone!! She doesn't need anyone to protect her now. *Sigh* Mace!! He meets Sia in the supermarket and walks her home. She doesn't trust him at all and when he gives her a note and tells her to meet him the next day she doesn't even read it. She cant stop thinking of him though and finally he gets to tell her that he is part of a resistance. He is a recruiter and wants her to be part of it. He is strong, tough but yet oh so sweet with Sia. I loved seeing their friendship grow.  I went into Dark Days with high expectations and they were more than met. Kate Ormand has created a unique setting fraught with danger. Its faced paced and action packed. In it we get to see the reaction of people when faced with certain death. Do they fight or hide? She has created a world where the "special" people are chosen to live in the New World and the other lower ones get murdered, and not just murdered but torn apart by cyborgs. Its chilling to think about!! Dark Days was an impressive debut an I look forward to reading more from this author. The ending hinted to maybe another addition to this dark and dangerous world!! Im hoping so anyway ;) 
ABookVacation More than 1 year ago
Imagine knowing the exact day you’re going to die—as if you could forget, the clock tower is counting down the days for you. Imagine knowing a cyborg army is coming to kill you and everyone you love; knowing there is no chance of survival. Welcome to the future, where the select are creating a new world, and you’re not invited. In 15 days, the cyborgs will come, and everyone knows it’ll be a painful death—the 24 hour TV footage of other sectors’ demolishen proves that. You can’t hide; there’s nowhere to go. No one in any sector has survived the cyborgs. No. One. This is Sia’s reality; thankfully it’s not ours, but Ormand does a great job putting readers right in the thick of the action as Sia lives out her last 15 days, first in fear, then in resignation, and then in determination to fight back. Who has the right to say you’re not worthy to live? According to Sia, nobody. While the novel starts out believable enough, with Sia’s revelations and resignations, I have to admit that as the action begins to quicken, the believability became a bit disjointed for me. Infiltrating a high security site with little to no incident just didn’t seem real, especially as Sia flys by the seat of her pants, has had no infiltration training, and doesn’t know anything about the people she needs to know about in order to survive in this new world. Her ill-thought-out plan does backfire, but the ease of escape was just too perfect in my mind—not that I’m looking for terrible things to happen to the characters, but it just seemed to me that every time an obstacle came up, it was easily overcome by the characters in one way or another. Of course, this is just a small segment of the overall novel; much more is to come for Sia and the characters after her antics, and the final events and showdowns were, in my opinion, much more up to snuff in terms of believability. So while the novel seems to take a small dive in the midst of it all, by the end I found it to be back on track and intense, and I certainly do not want to switch places with Sia.