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Diverse Energies

Diverse Energies

5.0 1
by Tobias S. Buckell (Editor), Joe Monti (Editor), Ursula K. Le Guin, Paolo Bacigalupi, Malinda Lo

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In a world gone wrong, heroes and villains are not always easy to distinguish and every individual has the ability to contribute something powerful. In this stunning collection of original and rediscovered stories of tragedy and hope, the stars are a diverse group of students, street kids, good girls, kidnappers, and child laborers pitted against their environments,


In a world gone wrong, heroes and villains are not always easy to distinguish and every individual has the ability to contribute something powerful. In this stunning collection of original and rediscovered stories of tragedy and hope, the stars are a diverse group of students, street kids, good girls, kidnappers, and child laborers pitted against their environments, their governments, differing cultures, and sometimes one another as they seek answers in their dystopian worlds. Take a journey through time from a nuclear nightmare of the past to society’s far future beyond Earth with these eleven stories by masters of speculative fiction. Includes stories by Paolo Bacigalupi, Ursula K. Le Guin, Malinda Lo, Cindy Pon, Daniel H. Wilson, and more.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Conceived in an effort to more judiciously represent ethnic and cultural diversity in YA fiction, this provocative collection, edited by SF author Buckell and literary agent Monti explores dystopian themes through multiple lenses. Instead of the usual white faces, the stories feature protagonists from a broader spectrum, all doing their best to survive in hostile or frightening settings. While there's not a single misfire in this anthology, particular works stand out. Ellen Oh's "The Last Day" takes place in a world torn apart by a decades-long war, while K. Tempest Bradford's "The Uncertainty Principle" sees time travel constantly altering one girl's surroundings. Malinda Lo's "The Good Girl" is a prickly love story set against the desire for a better life, and Cindy Pon's "Blue Skies" is almost painful in its longing for escape. Not only do these stories feature racially diverse casts, set all over the world or in space, some have gay and lesbian protagonists, giving readers plenty with which to identify. Happy endings are infrequent, but readers will eagerly immerse themselves in each vividly constructed world. Ages 12–up (Nov.)
VOYA - Kevin Beach
This entertaining collection of short fiction focuses on dystopian societies. In these rather depressing tales, the characters deal with pollution, cults, military regimes, nuclear holocausts, abject poverty, killer robots, time travel, nihilism, aliens, and mythical creatures. Most have interrupted endings that call upon the reader to complete the story. Readers cannot help but root for the sympathetic protagonists in each adventure and imagine a successful escape from their hell. The selected stories are diverse in gender and setting, though oddly heavy on Asian countries and characters. Most are set in decaying urban locales. A few of the authors are recognizable to science fiction and young adult readers, such as Ursula K. Le Guin, Daniel H. Wilson, and Paolo Bacigalupi, but all contributors present exciting and thought-provoking adventures. All the scenarios are enjoyable, but with no comic relief, when read straight through, it tends to become a disheartening experience. Teen angst in the future makes for a very popular genre and this well-written collection should prove popular if promoted to the The Hunger Games or Divergent series crowd. There is nothing too rough here for a middle school reader to handle. Ages 11 to 18.
Children's Literature - Sarah Maury Swan
This anthology speaks to inevitable jumbling of the world's cultures, frequently using dark dystopian stories. The horror exploded in Nagasaki and Hiroshima during WWII haunts "The Last Day," Ellen Oh's not particularly well written story of human survival and loyalty to friends. In "Freshee's Frogurt," which will appeal to boys, Daniel H. Wilson tells of a police officer questioning a teen who survived an attack by an-out-of-control robot. One of the better stories, "The Uncertainty Principle," by K. Tempest Bradford, is about a girl caught up in a time warp where the world constantly changes around her. In "Pattern Recognition," Ken Liu tells of a boy who discovers the compound he lives in is full of lies. Greg van Eekhout's "Gods of the Dimming Night," is a compelling mix of improbability and mythic intrigue about an Indonesian-American boy who ends up fighting and killing a warrior from Odin's army. "Next Door," by Rahul Kanakia, pits "squatters" against property owners. Malinda Lo's "Good Girl," looking for her brother in the tunnels where non-purebloods live, falls in love with a mutt girl and finally realizes her brother is dead. "A Pocket Full of Dharma" is all the protagonist of Paolo Bacigalupi's story wants but instead ends up with a data cube containing the conscience of the nineteenth Dali Lama in his pocket. Kidnapping a privileged Taiwanese girl not only nets Cindy Pon's protagonist lots of money, but also creates a longing in the girl to see "Blue Sky." "What Arms to Hold Us," by Rajan Khanna, has the main character driving his robot to freedom. Finding one's place in the universe is the well-written theme of Ursula K. Le Guin's "Solitude." The stories do offer love, hope and family obligation, but enough with the dystopia. Reviewer: Sarah Maury Swan
School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—A variety of characters populates the well-written, future-set short stories in this aptly named anthology. Protagonists represent different ages, ethnicities, and sexual orientations. They all exist in unique, fully dimensional, and bleak worlds that are populated by children held in slavery, street people, the underprivileged, time travelers, and heroes who courageously fight to improve humanity's plight. The thread that binds these selections is the bravery of the main characters. Whether facing governmental, societal, or individual corruption, the protagonists find their own way to rise above it. Malinda Lo's "Good Girl" is a particularly engaging tale about an obedient daughter whose search for her missing brother leads her to an underground world that reveals some startling truths about her identity and the government. Daniel H. Wilson's "Freshee's Frogurt" stands out with its distinctive format; it's written as an interview conducted by a police officer investigating a robot-gone-rogue case. Each story entertains and provides the opportunity for underrepresented readers to find themselves on the pages. Contributors range from newly published authors to award winners, such as Ursula K. Le Guin and Cindy Pon. A first purchase for collections needing diversity titles or where short stories and dystopia are popular.—Cindy Wall, Southington Library & Museum, CT
Kirkus Reviews
As the title promises, this sophisticated science-fiction anthology is diverse in nearly every sense of the word. Beyond their being science fiction, no single element or quality unites the collection's stories. However, the anthology was created in response to concerns that mixed-race characters, non-Western characters, LGBTQ characters and characters of color were underrepresented in young adult fiction, and most stories bring one or more of these underrepresented identities to the foreground. Readers will find poor children working in mines and factories, a have-not yao boy kidnapping a rich you girl and a girl reeling as the world inexplicably changes around her, and no one else notices. Although many stories imagine bleak futures, their tones are refreshingly varied. Daniel Wilson's tale of a robot attack at a frozen-yogurt shop takes the form of an almost-comical police-interview transcript. Ursula K. LeGuin's "Solitude" is a sweeping, nostalgic epic. K. Tempest Bradford's "Uncertainty Principle" is a character-driven time-travel tale. Understanding many of the stories takes patience: Readers are plunged quickly into complex worlds, and exposition often comes slowly. Careful, curious readers will be rewarded, though probably not comforted, by the many realities and futures imagined here. (Science fiction/anthology. 12 & up)

Product Details

Lee & Low Books, Inc.
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
5.70(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.20(d)
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

Meet the Author

TOBIAS S. BUCKELL is a Caribbean-born professional blogger and SF/F author who grew up in Grenada, the British Virgin Islands, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. He is a Clarion graduate, Writers of the Future winner, and Campbell Award for Best New SF Writer Finalist, and he has been nominated for a Nebula Award. His work on Halo has been selected as a Best Book for Young Adults (BBYA). Buckell lives in Ohio with his wife and two children.

JOE MONTI is a literary agent. Before becoming an agent he was the children’s fiction buyer at Barnes & Noble Inc., held an executive sales position at Houghton Mifflin, and was an editorial director at Little, Brown Books for Young Readers. There, several of the books he acquired have become New York Times bestsellers, and one was nominated for the National Book Award and was awarded the Michael L. Printz Award. Monti lives in New Jersey with his wife and son.

11 speculative fiction authors contribute stories to Diverse Energies: Paolo Bacigalupi, K. Tempest Bradford, Rahul Kanakia, Rajan Khanna, Ursula K. Le Guin, Ken Liu, Malinda Lo, Ellen Oh, Cindy Pon, Greg Van Eekhout, and Daniel H. Wilson.

Features bestselling and award-winning authors including Ursula K. Le Guin (multiple Hugo and Nebula awards, Pushcart Prize, James Tiptree Jr. Award, and Margaret A. Edwards Award for lifetime achievement, among many other honors), Paolo Bacigalupi (Michael L. Printz Award, John W. Campbell Award, Hugo Award, Nebula Award, Locus Award), Malinda Lo (William C. Morris YA Debut Award Finalist, Andre Norton Award for YA Fantasy and Science Fiction Finalist, Lambda Literary Award Finalist), Nebula- and Andre Norton-nominated Greg van Eekhout, Nebula-nominated Ken Liu, among others.

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Diverse Energies 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Pops in* Hullo everyone!