Test [NOOK Book]

Overview

Pass, and have it made. Fail, and suffer the consequences. A master of teen thrillers tests readers' courage in an edge-of-your-seat novel that echoes the fears of exam-takers everywhere. Ann, a teenage girl living in the security-obsessed, elitist United States of the very near future, is threatened on her way home from school by a mysterious man on a black motorcycle. Soon she and a new friend are caught up in a vast conspiracy of greed involving the mega-wealthy owner of a school testing company. Students who ...
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Test

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Overview

Pass, and have it made. Fail, and suffer the consequences. A master of teen thrillers tests readers' courage in an edge-of-your-seat novel that echoes the fears of exam-takers everywhere. Ann, a teenage girl living in the security-obsessed, elitist United States of the very near future, is threatened on her way home from school by a mysterious man on a black motorcycle. Soon she and a new friend are caught up in a vast conspiracy of greed involving the mega-wealthy owner of a school testing company. Students who pass his test have it made; those who don't, disappear . . . or worse. Will Ann be next? For all those who suspect standardized tests are an evil conspiracy, here's a thriller that really satisfies!
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Sleator (House of Stairs; Hell Phone) misses the mark with a dystopian near-future thriller that takes the doctrine of "No Child Left Behind" doctrine to extremes. The eponymous test (it "not only left kids, it got rid of them") is the all-important XCAS, and to prepare for it, students learn nothing except how to take tests; however, those who fail it cannot go to college and are barred from high-paying jobs. These have-nots are literally stuck in traffic, spinning their wheels for hours before they can reach any useful destination. Luckily Ann Forrest, the feisty heroine, can walk to and from school. When her do-gooder father, a home health aid, aggravates Mr. Warren, the mega-rich owner of the housing project where Mr. Forrest works, the Warrens send a minion on a motorcycle to attack Ann. Meanwhile Ann discovers that the Warrens also own the company that publishes the XCAS. Coincidences pile up and overload the plot: Lep, a Thai immigrant who works for the Warrens, has proof of their corruption and will do anything for Ann, who is also his classmate; a newspaper reporter just happens to witness Ann's attack; etc. Stiffly executed and obvious in its conclusions, this is more premise than story. Ages 12-up. (Mar.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
KLIATT
AGERANGE: Ages 12 to 18.

In Massachusetts, where Sleator lives part of the year, we have MCAS exams in the school system, which determine whether a student advances or graduates. In the novel Test, Sleator features the XCAS exams, which determine the future of every student. In Sleator’s future world, not far from our own, the exams are prepared by a corporation, run by an unscrupulous rich man, who makes a lot of money selling the test to the government. There are many ways this system can be corrupted. Two students are featured: Ann and Lep. They meet in their English class, and amazingly Lep, who is an immigrant with poor English skills, starts scoring better and better on the practice exams. It turns out Lep is being bribed, provided correct answers in exchange for helping the unscrupulous rich man get rid of poor tenants in property he owns. Tony, who works for the corporation, is so twisted he tries to kill Ann when she starts asking questions. Then there is evil rich girl Elise, with a crush on Tony, who makes more mischief. For those readers who follow current events and the growing power of certain corporations to take control of our lives, this will seem to be a relevant SF thriller. Ann and Lep manage to thwart the system brilliantly, at great risk to themselves and their families. An interesting statement on the growing ability of a few wealthy people to have almost total power over us all; with the added element of a huge disparity between the wealthy few and the many struggling poor. Reviewer: Claire Rosser
March 2008 (Vol. 42, No.2)

VOYA
AGERANGE: Ages 11 to 15.

Considering Sleator's popularity, this novel is a particularly disappointing and overly simplistic work. In the near future, the masses sit in traffic for hours to reach schools where they are taught only how to pass the national graduation test. Ann, a forgettable main character, is threatened by a mysterious motorcyclist and discovers that Mr. Warren, the slumlord owner of the building where her father works, coincidentally publishes the financially lucrative test; Warren's apartment manager, Tony, is the menacing motorcyclist; and Tony is bribing one of Ann's immigrant classmates with test answers. Unfortunately the characters are so clichéd and stupid that the book cannot be taken seriously. Warren's bulimic daughter Elise buys a new hair dryer every few months to be sure to have the latest model. Sadistic Tony desperately wants to keep his job, yet he arranges to start a fire in the apartment of a tenant he does not like, endangering the entire building and his job. The media is unaware of Warren's connection to the test, even though Warren prints his "secret" corporate logo on the test materials and on Tony's motorcycle. Ann surreptitiously records Elise's threat to tamper with Ann's test scores, yet she forgets to play the recording when she tells the story to a journalist. Although some readers may be lured by the anti-standardized test message or Sleator's reputation, libraries should base the purchase of this book only on expected interest, rather than anticipated quality. Reviewer: Amy Sisson
April 2008 (Vol. 31, No. 1)

School Library Journal

Gr 7-9- In the (seemingly) not-so-distant future, the divide between the rich and the poor is greater than ever, with the wealthy having private helicopters and mansions, and the poor stuck in endless traffic and living in projects. Standardized tests determine which kids will be allowed to go to college and have a decent life. Ann's father works for Warren, the slumlord who owns the projects; when he tries to get the residents to rebel, Tony, the building manager, threatens Ann. Warren also owns the company that publishes the tests and has connections in Washington. Lep, a Thai immigrant, is asked to do illegal and dangerous things for Tony in exchange for the test answers. When Lep and Ann discover how much corruption is behind the tests, they decide to take action, thus putting their lives in danger. While the characters are somewhat flat and the writing is often repetitious, the plot is fact paced with short chapters that end in cliff-hangers, allowing the book to be a good read for moderately reluctant readers. Teens will be able to draw comparisons to contemporary society's shift toward standardized testing and ecological concerns, and are sure to appreciate the spoofs on NCLB. Although the novel wraps up too neatly, it still may be an inspiration for teens wishing to change their political/social environment.-Marie C. Hansen, New York Public Library

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781613120026
  • Publisher: Abrams, Harry N., Inc.
  • Publication date: 1/14/2011
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Sales rank: 667,539
  • Age range: 12 - 17 Years
  • File size: 4 MB

Meet the Author

For more than thirty years, William Sleator has thrilled readers with his inventive books that blend real science with stories that explore our darkest fears and wishes. His House of Stairs was a groundbreaking book for young adults, and was named one of the best novels of the twentieth century by the Young Adult Library Services Association. Critics call his writing “clever and engrossing . . . and just plain fun” (Booklist) and “gleefully icky” (Publishers Weekly). He divides his time between homes in Boston and Thailand.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 21 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(14)

4 Star

(4)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(1)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 19 of 21 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 12, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Reviewed by Karin Librarian for TeensReadToo.com

    In a world not much different than ours, people are divided into two classes. In one, the rich and powerful travel by helicopter to their luxury houses and jobs. In the other, people are stuck in hours of traffic going to and from their low-level jobs - all the while breathing air poisoned by pollution.

    The Test is what determines your future.

    Ann lives with her parents in the low-level class. Her parents leave hours before they have to be at work because it takes so long to get there in the traffic. Her father works as a health care giver to some people that live in an apartment building owned by one of the most powerful men in the country.

    The apartment building is in terrible shape and in constant disrepair. When Ann's father starts to tell the occupants to withhold rent until their apartments are fixed, things begin to get dangerous.

    Ann starts to see a mysterious man on a motorcycle bearing a weird logo on her way to and from school. When he begins to threaten her, she decides to figure out what is going on. She finds out things are more connected than she ever thought, and that the Test is at the center of everything.

    THE TEST by William Sleator is a good story. With how testing is viewed in our public schools today, it is interesting to see an author's view of what could happen if we let testing get out of control.

    The one weakness I can see with this book is the ending. It almost seemed like Sleator ran out of time and had to turn in the manuscript before he could wrap things up properly. Overall, though, a good read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 19, 2008

    Standardized Testing Thriller

    William Sleator has come up with another winner. The climate in schools these days is fraught with tension about testing. Even wee kindergartners are now dragged into it. It's out of control and TEST, a semi-futuristic teen thriller, neatly incorporates the fears and concerns about standardized testing into a story of the high school caste system carried to a logical and chilling elitist extreme. The book is vibrant and fun to read the characters are real and compelling and the outcome is satisfying.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 9, 2008

    A reviewer

    I was lucky enough to get an advanced copy of this book at a Harvard Sci Fi and Young Adult conference. Mr. Sleator was on the panel. The book is witty, eccentric, and poignant at the same time. I stayed up all night reading it. I highly recommend this book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 16, 2014

    Test

    &#8851 &#8851

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 11, 2014

    Derp

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 27, 2014

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 20, 2013

    Testing...

    &stars &star

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 16, 2014

    Test [ post ]

    [ post ] <p>
    ~S h &alpha &tau &tau &epsilon r M &delta &delta &eta

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2013

    Bub bub

    Bub bub

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 28, 2012

    Ferryman

    ((Mmkay))

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 28, 2012

    Zoey

    Gtg

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 23, 2012

    Rune to merlin

    She hisses. "You dont kill a baby fawn!" That was an innocent life taken beofre it was lived. Sure you do what you can for the clan. But this is a test. Time is not evrrything." She snarls.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 23, 2012

    The fourth test

    The first one to get enough prey for 5 cats will procede.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 23, 2012

    Merlin

    Catches a rabbit nd two trout. Then he searches out a baby deer or moose calf. He finds a small baby deer nd carefully stalks it to not alert the mother who i nearby. When h is close enough he pounces nd grips the fauns neck in his jaws nd bites down hard breaking the spinal cord. He brings it to the kill pile nd then heads for the next task.( tests 1-2-3&4 now done)

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 26, 2011

    Page-Turner, but Badly Thought Out in Some Areas

    This book is a good one, but some of the details as to how the 'bad guys' lose is not that well thought out. Don't get me wrong, it is a very good book, but you will see what I am talking about when you read it.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 15, 2008

    HOT! HOT! HOT!

    This book is on fire!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 9, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 14, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 11, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 19 of 21 Customer Reviews

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