Alone was the note Cade knew best. It was the root of all her chords.
Seventeen-year-old Cade is a fierce survivor, solo in the universe with her cherry-red guitar. Or so she thought. Her world shakes apart when a hologram named Mr. Niven tells her she was created in a lab in the year 3112, then entangled at a subatomic level with a boy named Xan.
Cade’s quest to locate Xan joins her with an array of outlaws—her first friends—on a galaxy-spanning adventure. And once Cade discovers the wild joy of real connection, there’s no turning back.
|Publisher:||Houghton Mifflin Harcourt|
|Product dimensions:||5.60(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.30(d)|
|Age Range:||14 - 17 Years|
About the Author
Amy Rose Capetta holds an MFA in Writing for Children & Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts. She has a particle-level love of mind-bending science and all sorts of music. She adores her small patch of universe, but also looks intently at the stars. Entangled is her first book.
Read an Excerpt
PURESTATE A quantum system that cannot be described as a mixture of any others
Saturday night, and Cade was headed to the one place on Andana that she didn’t hate. The one place where she could be around other humans and almost stand it.
First she had to put on the right armor: black skirt, black gloves. Spiked her lashes with a bit of black market mascara, checked the effect in a broken-tipped triangle of mirror. Added two matching oil slicks of eyeliner. Grabbed her guitar.
Slapped and echoed up the metal ladder, out of her glorified cement bunker, into the empty-stomach rattle of the desert.
Her footprints crumbled in the sand as soon as she shifted her weight. Each breath was dust and dust and air—in that order. Each breath made her lungs curl into fists, ready to fight their way back to some blinked-out mother planet—a place she would never see because it didn’t exist.
Cade swung her guitar case over the line that meant the
end of the Andanan deserts and the beginning of Voidvil. It was a real line—dunes on one side, and, on the other, buildings that shot like dark fingers out of the sand.
Cade didn’t love the deserts of Andana. But she wanted to peel off her own skin and give it a firm shake when she thought about living in Voidvil. It was a human town—really a human trap—a place where people piled on top of each other deep and high in apartment towers crusted with the black of fire escapes.
On the bubbled-tar sidewalks at the edge of town, men and women stared at Cade and her guitar case. Smiles crawled onto their faces. The closer she got to the center of town, the louder the voices grew, the closer skins got to each other, got to her, sweating to close the in-between inch. The lips here smiled too, but the eyes were empty, glassed-and-gone with spacesick.
Cade didn’t have spacesick.
She had something worse than that.
Her destination sat deep in the ground, a blister under nine stories of pressing, smelling, never-stopping human. Cade dropped down a corkscrew of stairs into the wet-stone smell of Club V.
The room wasn’t much when she looked at it. A small stage, set back and painted the shiny black of an insect shell. The space was good for a crowd, but half-crammed with a glass bar that Cade wasn’t old enough to drink at. Four laws governed the humans on Andana and this, of course, was one
of them. Not that she cared. She wasn’t there to fuzz herself. Or fade out. Or meet people, even.
Or meet people, ever.
“You’re late,” said the owner, a nonhuman who liked to tell humans that his name was Mr. Smithjoneswhite. He held a drink, something amberish on the rocks, with one of his long arms. He had six of them, and two legs, spanning out from a central nervous system that was actually central. He could regrow a limb if he had to, in a process that was filled with pus and fascination. Handy in bar fights, too.
“You’re late,” he said again, and Cade wondered if he was trying to start a bar fight, right now, with her.
“I don’t go on for two hours.”
“Be on stage,” he said. “On time.” His accent was thick, like he was slurping the words off a plate. Cade could speak passable Andanan, but he insisted on English. Didn’t want her mangling the mother tongue.
“It’s the setup,” he said, waving one limb at the stage. “Isn’t it? It’s taking you too long. Too much time staring at yourself in the mirror.” It was a low and unoriginal punch. Humans were the only species that used mirrors. Other species knew what they looked like without a bit of glass-and-backing, or had gone past a looks-based understanding of each other.
“Too good to make a bit of talk with me, little girl?” Mr. Smithjoneswhite asked, rattling his slow-melt ice at her.
Cade put her tongue between her teeth, to keep herself from grinding them to white dust.
“Just make sure I get paid.”
She shouldn’t have come back without seeing the money from last week. Of the four laws that Cade and all the humans on Andana had to live with, the first one declared that they weren’t cleared for work. Too weak. Not built for the climate here, and definitely not built for space. So they bartered and black-marketed. It was clear that Cade had a talent, so of course someone like Mr. Smithjoneswhite was willing to step in, fill out the official forms, shuffle a few coins into her hand at the end of the night. But last week had been two sets, three encores, shameless cheering, no coin. And she slithered back. It was a sour move, because it showed Mr. Smithjoneswhite how much she needed this place, needed it more than the money.
“I’ll see you get paid,” he said. “From the drink sales tonight.”
Cade looked up into his face—a blur of features, like it had been stamped by someone with a shaky wrist. “Right,” she said. “For both weeks.”
He tipped the end of his two upper limbs, his version of a nod. Cade swept past, and kept up the stomping and scowling. But for the first time in seven days, she felt something other than pissed off.
Because Cade was at the club for the same reason as every other Saturday. She would wait out the amateur screechgasm of the opening acts, bits of foam tucked into her ears as in- surance against awfulness. She would take the stage, set up her amps and pedals, and give a tender squeeze to the pegs on the neck of her impossible, unscratched, cherry red guitar. The color of a fruit no one had eaten in centuries, and still, it looked delicious.
Turn the volume up. up. up.
Drown the unbelievable noise that crashed through her head.
The Noise was the barrier, the thing that kept Cade from living with other humans. They made so much scurrying, screeching, nattering sound, and when that hit the Noise, pressure changed, and she was sure her brain would start leaking out through her nose.
Cade kicked the metal skeleton of a chair to an isolated backstage spot and sank her head between her hands.
She knew there must have been a time before the Noise, but it was roped off, along with a few glaring, all-white memories of her most primitive years. People in white. White rooms. White lights, clean and sharp as a seven-blade knife. Cade wanted to look at those memories but she didn’t have clearance, even inside her own head. She was stuck with the years of less-than-life that had passed since she’d been dropped at the Parentless Center on Andana.
And she was stuck with the Noise. It wasn’t a clear stream of words or music or even random screeches of sound. It was those things and more—unclear, unwashed, unbearable. There were different strands of it. Frequencies. Sometimes she could pick them out, sometimes she had to cave and crumble.
Cade was a smashed radio, all the stations of the universe pouring in.
The opening acts—Andanans on sand-skin drums, a band with four lead singers, a lone man on a battered trumpet—came and went. Cade set up the stage in record time, feeling the shift of muscles under skin. She never needed help with even the heaviest of her amps, and she never felt tired, and she never got sick. Two girls even younger than Cade, dressed in some kind of plastic strings and spacetrash, stood at the corner of the stage and whisper-shouted about it—a favorite snatch of gossip at Club V.
“She’s not human, not all human.”
“Some Hatchum in her bloodline, you think?”
“She doesn’t have the double pupils. Or the orbital. Anyway, they don’t snug humans.”
“Something snugged something to make her.” “Yeah, but what?”
Cade made a note: Play an ear-obliterating chord in their faces.
She stood in the center of the stage and held Cherry-Red—just held her, the weight welcome and sinking. The different colors of the lights warmed into her. Blue on her right side, red on her left, a whole row of colors pressed up hot, breaking over her back. It was enough to convince her that all lights should have color. Not the dark nothing of space, or the bright nothing of the desert sun.
Cade fiddled with the strings until her fingertips were satisfied. If they fit just right, she could play harder and faster than anyone in Voidvil. And when she did that, the Noise retreated—if only a little bit. Last Saturday night, she’d been onstage and she was sure that for a moment she’d felt the Noise flicker. When she tried to play the same song at home, recreate the conditions, the static in her head had blasted on.
But another flicker? That was something to look forward to. The crowd was bigger than last week, splitting the seams of the room. People spilled over the borders of each other—arms overlapping, backs pressed to chests. The crowd was a creature of its own, with a long tail stretched up the stairs. And when Cade raised her pick, not even in a brass way, the creature went quiet, and held its breath.
Cade bit into the first chord.
The song chose itself. A wild, cat-scratch number that yowled when she added distortion. Within a few minutes, it gave way to something else—driving, drumming, a pop of knuckles against steel. Cade never planned sets. That made it easier for her to sneak up on the Noise, overwhelm it. But it gave her no ground tonight. When she dialed volumes up, the Noise dialed itself up. When she strung notes into melodies, the Noise melted into chaos.
Cade looked up from the snarl of her fingers on frets and distracted herself with the crowd.
The ones closest to the stage had spacesick. They loved to dance, a spastic dance that involved half-snugging your neighbor in public. The spacesicks that touched each other the most, without even seeming to notice it, were the farthest gone. Cade wondered how long it had taken—how many months, years, of exposure to the dead black of space—to make them like that. She looked over their heads, into the safe middle.
But she snagged on someone in the second row, a man wearing a lab coat. Human, from the looks of him. Of course, humans weren’t cleared for labwork on Andana. The man’s eyes—clear, no glass—scanned her up and down.
Cade slammed into another song. Verse-chorus-verse. Comfort food. It was the kind of tune that raised its middle finger to the Noise, slapped order thick and sweet on top of chaos. But then she got to the bridge—and Cade was sour at getting over bridges. She couldn’t see the other side, never reached the shore. When the bridge crumbled, the Noise was waiting.
Cade grabbed the audience and dragged it down with her. She filled them with strange intervals, waves of feedback, tones that picked out other tones so high they could only be felt in the drone of the air, so low they foamed up through the floorboards. She gave people the Noise, thick as black market coffee. Unfiltered.
And she got loud. So loud that there was no room in her head, her body, the club, the planet, all of space.
She’d reached the part of the set when the crowd had the annoying tendency to fall in love with her. She could see it happening. Hands went loose, bodies fell into the troughs after notes, crashed into the new ones. Talk died out and cheers evolved, strange and throaty. Some of the glass went out of the spacesicks’ eyes, but Cade didn’t trust it to stay gone—the longer a person had the sickness, the thicker and more constant the film. The people in the front row glassed over one by one, then reached up weedy arms to touch her. Mr. Smithjoneswhite didn’t care as long as no one rushed the stage.
Cade knew this had nothing to do with her. People didn’t want her. They wanted the music, this string of notes that kept them beating in time with something other than themselves, in touch with something more than themselves. Cade wanted that, too. It was the only thing she and these slummers had in common.
The last chorus trickled out, weak. Cade wanted to play harder, faster, louder—but she would get one note away from hitting a stride and he would be there again, looking up at her, pale and patient. Lab coat.
Cade wondered if he was just another one of her looped-out admirers. But he didn’t have the look. He was calm and at least halfway to old—with eyes that rarely seemed to blink. Like they had to be reminded to do it, for appearances.
He stared on and on, his eyes insisting on some kind of connection. But Cade was connected to no one, and the few people who had pretended to care about her were useless. At best. Cade sliced one of her meanest looks at lab coat, one of her very best back-offs. Then she stared at the bar, at the stairs, at the walls, but the white of his coat was always there, catching the corner of her eye.
Cade stirred things up again, built a new and terrible song. The song to demolish all songs, to smash the Noise, to put an end to the horrible world in her head. She crested to the top of it, reached her fingers for the next note, felt the strings close around the trenches she dug, over and over, into her skin.
Dark. Quiet. Hush.
The Noise blinked off.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This was an amazing sci-fi adventure with a nice theory about music behind it. Cade is unique - she lives in a world filled with static, and only the right kind of music from her guitar can make it fade for a little while. Then one day she seems to break through and it all goes away - but a strange man shows up with a bit of a history lesson for her. The history of her life. And it isn't anything like what she thought. She is one of a pair of babies - bonded in a strange new molecular way called entanglement. And her pair, Xan, is out there somewhere and she needs to find him before he is killed by the un-makers. The un-makers are a strange new race that Cade has never seen before, and they are after her. Her only hope is to trust in a strange group of new friends. These new friends were amazingly written. They had such unique personalities and ways of looking at life. I loved how even the spaceship was portrayed - she was great! Their search for Xan leads to several little side adventures and new information about Cade's past. Each step closer, Cade manages to somehow unlock strange abilities that no one really knows how to control. The ending was an odd mixture of sadness and hope. At one point in time, I thought this was going to be a tragedy, but the author managed to miraculously turn it around just in time. Not everyone comes out at the end unscathed, but their world is not a much better place because of what they've done. *This book was received in exchange for an honest review*
As if being a teen doesn’t have enough stress, try it when you are alone in a dystopian world, hearing noises and voices in your head and discovering somewhere out in the universe, you are entangled with another being. Amy Rose Capetta’s Entangled is a new twist in the YA Dystopian/Sci-fi world with a colorful cast of characters that add to the intrigue of Cade’s quest. Her ability to build Cade's world and her character's feelings goes far to make Entangled an engaging read! Entangled is the story of a young girl who learns to accept others into her world and trust in their friendship as she begins to discover who she is and her true purpose in life. One constant in Cade’s life was music with her guitar, so expect many musical musings from her, further developing her character as lonely, alone and isolated, making her transformation all that more impressive. It appears the important note is the journey, not the final destination, making a perfect set up for a sequel and more information on the mysterious Xan. An ARC edition was provided by NetGalley and HMH Books for Young Readers in exchange for my honest review.
This is exactly what I’ve been wanting from YA Science Fiction. With a deliciously unique flavor and a fantastically written narrative, ENTANGLED is setting the bar high for teen sci-fi. What I loved: Cade. She is such a fascinating protagonist. From her troubled upbringing to living off her music, her rocker style to her no-nonsense attitude, Cade is one hell of a girl. She also has flaws, makes mistakes, and can’t make up her mind. Despite Cade being a super-special human with super-special abilities she isn’t annoying, whiny, or entitled. Her quirky voice, interesting slang, and authentic outlook on life kept me turning the pages. I also loved: The romance. Or should I say, lack thereof? Don’t get me wrong, there is romance in this story. It is tertiary to the two more important plot points – Cade finding and rescuing Xan, and Cade’s own journey of self-discovery. The romance is extra. It’s delightful, and a little weird, and completely tantalizing, but it’s not that big of a deal. And I really respect that in a YA novel. And even more love for: The sci-fi elements! Quantum mechanics can often seem wonky or cliched in fiction, but it was not that way here. Big, fancy, sciency words weren’t just thrown around to sound cool – the author knows what she’s doing. Spaceships and aliens, quantum entanglement and telepathy, holograms and spacesickness. The science in this fiction is delightful. I wanted more: Everything! Which I shall receive in the upcoming sequel. Recommended: Highly! To all fans of science fiction and fantasy, aliens and spaceships, music and friendship.
Good thing e books arent sold by covers this is a mish mosh middle school sci-fan to avoid