“Apocalyptic dystopian fiction at its best. Angler’s sharp wit and dexterity with political themes are matched only by the thrilling suspense on every page.” —Lis Wiehl, New York Times bestselling author and FOX News correspondent
Everyone gets the Mark. It gives all the benefits of citizenship. Yet if getting the Mark is such a good thing, then why does it feel so wrong?
Set in a future North America that is struggling to recover after famine and global war, Swipe follows the lives of three kids caught in the middle of a conflict they didn’t even know existed. United under a charismatic leader, every citizen of the American Union is required to get the Mark on their 13th birthday in order to gain the benefits of citizenship.
The Mark is a tattoo that must be swiped by special scanners for everything from employment to transportation to shopping. It’s almost Logan Langly’s 13th birthday and he knows he should be excited about getting the Mark, but he hasn’t been able to shake the feeling he’s being watched. Not since his sister went to get her Mark five years ago . . . and never came back.
When Logan and his friends discover the truth behind the Mark, will they ever be able to go back to being normal teenagers? Find out in the first book of this exciting series that is Left Behind meets Matched for middle-grade readers.
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By EVAN ANGLER
Thomas NelsonCopyright © 2011 Evan Angler
All right reserved.
Chapter OneLOGAN LANGLY, BOY WHO CRIED WOLF
The last thing Logan would want you to know about him was that he was afraid of the dark.
But Logan was afraid of the dark, and if you ever asked him about it, ever brought it up to his face and maybe teased him a little even, he'd stop you right where you stood and tell you it was for a very good reason.
It was because Logan Paul Langly was being watched.
He didn't know who, and he didn't know how. But every night, when Dad pulled up the covers, turned out the light, and shut the door behind him after demanding sweet dreams and tight sleep, Logan Paul Langly found himself on the wrong end of a spyglass.
So when Logan awoke with a start—even in the comfort of his own bed, even in the warmth of the late-summer evening that was anything but dark and stormy, the weekend before his first day of eighth grade—it was with well-worn urgency that he sat up, rubbed the sleep from his eyes, and scanned the room for signs of intrusion.
Tonight, there was only one. His window rested an inch above its seal, and a breeze dried the nightmare sweat from his forehead.
Logan couldn't remember if he'd left it open, but if you'd asked him in that moment, he would have told you he had not.
Had his father? Had his father walked to the window during their conversation that night? Maybe for some cool air in the midst of their heated discussion? Logan replayed the scene in his head.
* * *
He had been focused on his breathing, controlled and steady to keep himself calm. He had pulled the covers back but was standing a few feet away from the bed, just in case someone was under it, waiting for an ankle.
I'm too old for this, he thought, and he shook his head with just a little bit of shame.
"Whatcha doin', bud?" Mr. Langly said in the doorway behind him, and Logan jumped as if the words were a spider falling down his back. "Imagination got hold again?"
Logan nodded but didn't turn around. Instead he crawled into bed and pulled the covers high up over himself, curling up and facing the wall. He could feel his father sit beside him, hunched over and looking at his hands, folded and resting on his lap.
"You know," Mr. Langly said, "I think school's gonna be awesome this year. I think school's gonna be its best yet. You've got that government class ninth period—I know you're gonna love learning about all that stuff, and you've got gym and art and technology and—"
"Dad," Logan said, and his dad stopped abruptly. "I'm not worried about classes." The two were quiet for a minute. Mr. Langly wondered if he should take the opportunity to ask what Logan was worried about, and Logan wondered if he should say. But Dad pretty much knew the answer.
"The Mark, right?"
Logan stiffened at the sound of the word. Finally he said, "We're all turning thirteen this year. Everyone's getting it. It's just a matter of time."
Logan knew that if he was going to talk about this with anyone, it had to be Dad.
You did not talk about the Mark with Mom.
"Look," Mr. Langly said. "This year ... is going to be ... it's going to be great." But he frowned and sat still for several breaths, and Logan believed him less with each one.
"I remember when I got the Mark," Mr. Langly said, finally. "Just after you were born, when the program began. They give you a spoonful of nanosleep, so it doesn't hurt. You just go in, answer some questions ... sit back, and before you know it, you're Marked and on your way. It's nothing. Honestly.
"And then it's great! It's like playing your first hover-dodge game, or getting your first tablet, or going off to school, or ... I mean, you're free! With the Mark, you're free. You can get a job, you can shop for things ... if you want more juice, you can just go out and get a carton yourself. You won't even have to wait for Mom or me to come home—"
Logan rolled over and pulled the covers away from his head to look his father in the eyes. "Juice?"
"Or something." His dad smiled. "Why? What would you get?"
Logan refused to think about it, refused to allow himself even the slightest excitement over the Mark, so he and his dad had a little unspoken staring contest instead. They did this from time to time, just reach a moment of disagreement when Logan would stare, and Mr. Langly was a good sport, so he'd always stare back.
"You can't pretend it didn't happen," Logan said. "You can't pretend it didn't kill her."
And Logan's dad sighed.
That pretty much ended the staring contest that night.
In all of it, Logan couldn't remember his dad opening the window, couldn't remember the draft coming in and animating the blinds' soft rat-a-tat against the pane, as they did so ominously now.
So who had done it? Who had touched the window, and when? There had to be a reasonable explanation, but Logan couldn't think of one.
Why could he never think of one?
For years, it had been this way, off and on. He'd walk home from school on the familiar sidewalks of his town, looking over his shoulder the whole way. He'd finish homework on his lap with his back to a wall, his desk beside him empty and gathering dust, so as always to keep an eye on the room he was in. He'd brush his teeth at night transfixed by the door behind him in the mirror, his eyes trained on the knob that at any time could betray him, could turn or jump or jiggle. A quiet moment was one spent listening for footsteps, for leaves rustling in the fall or snow crunching in the winter. Time alone was time spent watching the movement in the shadows.
Being underage, Logan couldn't see a doctor without a Marked guardian, so at his moments of highest desperation, when his parents had had enough and didn't know what else to do, his dad would take him—drag him—to the Center. Logan would sit in the examination room, prodded and scared, while Mr. Langly said to the doctor things like "We don't know what's wrong with him ..." and "Ever since his sister ..." just exactly as if Logan wasn't there, wasn't sitting right there and crying silently as the doctor shone lights at him and shook his head coolly and clicked his tongue, saying words like traumatized, paranoid, delusional.
Over time, Logan learned to carry his fear. He learned to swallow it, deny it, live with it. His accounts of faces in windows and footprints on floors, of sounds at night and doors opening and closing on their own, of being followed or tracked or who-knows-what-else, had all been brushed off so many times by his parents and teachers and adults of any kind that sometimes Logan wondered what was real and what was imaginary.
But his sister had died. That happened. And ever since, Logan was about one floorboard creak away from certainty that someone, somewhere, was out to get him too.
His parents didn't know it, but Logan kept a flashlight hidden under his pillow. The switch to the ceiling light was all the way across the room, and he would have had to get up out of bed to turn it on. That was unacceptable. So Logan sat, now, back to the wall, covered in blankets up to his neck, and his hand braced the flashlight against his cheek to steady the beam of light as he swept it around each corner of the room.
There was nothing immediately out of the ordinary, except for the opened window. No mud on the floor, no stuff out of place ...
He turned the flashlight around, pointing the unlit end of it away from him, and flipped a switch along its handle. The main light turned off, and out of its other end, the violet haze of a black light began to glow.
Black lights were useful. They revealed lint, smudges, blood, traces not seen by the unaided eye ... and most importantly to Logan, they showed nanodust. There wasn't a Marked person around who didn't leave a cloud of it behind.
Tonight, though, like every night, Logan saw nothing—just the single small trail left by his father, an empty room with an unpleasant draft, and a window slightly ajar.
Time to check the rest of the house.
Logan tiptoed to the corner of his room and called for the elevator, which arrived promptly and took him to ground level.
Like many private residences in the town of Spokie, Logan's house had just one room to a floor, with an elevator connecting them and an open-air spiraling staircase outside in case of emergency, or for use during the nice summer months. Each room had panoramic windows and doors in two of the corners—one to the elevator and one to the outside staircase. The height of these houses varied widely and could reach higher than twenty floors, but Logan's had only eleven. This was good. More would have taken longer. Because every night, without fail, after his parents had tucked him into bed and gone to sleep themselves, it was Logan's job—selfappointed—to look thoroughly through each floor, bottom to top, flashlight in hand for signs of even the slightest suspicious thing.
Paranoid? To Logan, it was practical. These were simply the habits any boy might develop if he were certain that someone was out to get him.
The first floor was the foyer, lined with pictures of the family and hangers for coats and not much else. Nothing unusual this evening, so Logan double-checked the front door's dead bolt and moved on.
The second floor was the kitchen. Knives were all in place. That was a good sign.
The third floor was the dining room, only ever used for holidays and entertaining guests, and tonight it was as empty as expected.
Fourth floor was the bathroom, but no one lurked in the shower tonight. Floor five was the living room, cluttered but hardly suggesting a break-in. Six was Mr. Langly's office, and the holograms of his latest architectural projects glowed untouched. Seven was Logan's bedroom, which he skipped for now.
Eight was a rec room that no one ever used. It had been Logan's room up until five years ago—right there was where his bed used to be—but he'd moved down a floor when his sister passed away. Because she had lived on the ninth, and because every night while she was alive she'd tap a rhythm for Logan to hear through the floorboards. Shave-and-a-haircut, it went, and Logan would throw both shoes up at his ceiling. Tap-tap, they went. Two-bits. That was how they always said good night. When Lily died, it didn't take more than one tapless night for Logan to know that he couldn't live under that ceiling anymore.
Lily's room, nine, was a floor frozen in time like a museum of her last days, like one big held breath. It was Logan's least favorite to visit. A chill ran through him each time he did, and his eyes watered and made it hard for him to see, but still he never skipped it—nine was the perfect place for an intruder to hide. Tonight, though, like each night, there was no one there, or at least no one Logan could find, and he wasted no time stepping back into the elevator, knocking a soft tap-tap against the wall as he did.
Ten was his parents' bedroom, which Logan didn't need to check, so he moved straight to Mrs. Langly's study on eleven, filled to the brim with screens and meteorology tablets and satellite dishes, though no spies or burglars or murderers. It was beginning to look as if Logan would wake to see another day.
On the roof was the Langlys' yard. It was too small to play football up there, but it had a nice view. The grass shook gently in the evening wind, and having now checked each floor, Logan relaxed and allowed himself the drowsiness leading so pleasantly to sleep. He took the elevator down to his room on seven and crawled back under the covers, relieved to have made it through another night.
There! On his desk! The picture he kept ... had it moved?
In its frame was the last snapshot taken of Logan and his sister, on the eve of her death, smiling over presents with the blur of family celebration behind them. Logan always kept this picture positioned so he could see it from his bed. Now it rested ever so slightly pointed away, his view of it not quite straight on, the desk space in front of it just slightly wet with water that should have been in the glass beside it.
Who had been there? Who had snuck in through the window? Who had tipped the glass and knocked the picture askew?
No one, Logan told himself. You're being insane.
And Logan's heart snapped in his chest—so hard that it hurt—when across the room, the door to the outside stairway clicked quietly shut.
Chapter TwoERIN ARBITOR AND THE GOVERNMENT WORK
Erin Arbitor was aware of her father's voice beside her, but she couldn't have told you what he was saying. His chatter filled their magnetrain compartment like a bored conductor's while her mind wandered further and further away, past the blur of unfamiliar tracks, past cities and towns, over mountains and across rivers, all the way back to Beacon City, her city, half a continent away and nothing like the humdrum destination she rode to now.
Spokie, she thought. It would never be home.
"—don't know why we couldn't have caught an earlier train," Mr. Arbitor was saying. "Soon as we get in we'll have to register you for school; then I need to get straight to the office and set up while you unpack at the apartment."
"Fine, Dad," Erin said. She held her pet iguana up to the window so it could see an oily and polluted Lake Erie off in the distance.
"It's just a lot to do in one afternoon—"
"I know, Dad."
"—and you and I are both gonna need to hit the ground running tomorrow." Mr. Arbitor shook his head. "Not even there yet and we're already behind. Kept saying we should have left on Friday ..."
Erin rested Iggy on her lap and emerged reluctantly from her daydream, caustic and angry. "If only there could have been some way for us to stay with Mom in Beacon instead of uprooting our lives for no good reason." She shook her head, feigning sympathy. "Then you wouldn't be suffering such a terrible inconvenience."
"It was your mother's decision not to come with us," Mr. Arbitor said forcefully. He ignored Erin's tone. "She knows how important this job is. And not just to me—to the Union."
Erin sighed, caught square in the middle of a standoff between two strong-headed, working parents.
Just two months ago, Mr. Arbitor had surprised his family with the announcement that he had received a promotion at work, and that they would be moving to Spokie to accommodate it. Erin's mom, a top economic software analyst on Barrier Street in Beacon City, had told him precisely what he could do with that idea. Of course, Mr. Arbitor was certain it was only a matter of time before his wife gave in and found a way to keep the family together, but so far, she had not, and Erin was left with no choice but to get used to a new town a thousand miles away while her dad played a game of spousal career chicken and her mom continued enjoying life in the Big City back east.
"Well—anything for the Union," Erin said sarcastically, and her father rolled his eyes.
"I mean it," he said. "I took this job with good reason. You'll feel better about it once your mother's out here with us."
"She's not coming out here with us, Dad! She's waiting for you to come to your senses and tell DOME you can't just uproot your family because some bureaucrat's offering more money to copy and paste documents in Spokie than in Beacon!"
"That's not what this is, Erin."
"What about Mom's career, huh? What about my education—"
"This is what's best for all of us," Mr. Arbitor said, in a tone that suggested he'd been through this enough times with his wife already. "When we are called upon, we make sacrifices. Some things are more important than—"
"Than what? Than your family? How important can it be when you won't even tell me what you're needed for? I mean, maybe if I had some sense of what you were doing out here, at least I could wrap my head around—"
"Government work, Erin. Government work."
"'Course, Dad," Erin said. In all his years at DOME, Mr. Arbitor had never once talked about the specifics of what he did. When friends asked, Erin said what she was told to say, which was, "Government work," even though she had no idea what that meant. Somehow it just summed it up, said it all. If anyone pressed, she was supposed to say, "DOME, Department of Marked Emergencies." But no one ever pressed. The weight of the first two words was enough.
Frankly, Erin couldn't understand what her father was doing at a desk job in the first place. When she was younger, he had been a Beacon police officer, and a good one at that. In those days, when they'd play games together, he'd swoop her around the room with one hand. She'd hug him at night after his long days of patrolling the city, and it'd knock the wind out of her, every time. She loved that.
Excerpted from Swipe by EVAN ANGLER Copyright © 2011 by Evan Angler. Excerpted by permission of Thomas Nelson. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Table of Contents
ContentsPROLOGUE THE FRIENDS IN THE DUST....................1
ONE LOGAN LANGLY, BOY WHO CRIED WOLF....................3
TWO ERIN ARBITOR AND THE GOVERNMENT WORK....................12
THREE FIRST DAY, NEW FACE....................27
FOUR THE INVITATION....................62
FIVE SPY VS. SPY....................91
SEVEN DUST ON THE LAM....................157
EIGHT LOGAN'S MANY FRIENDS....................178
NINE DANE HAROLD'S QUIET ENCORE....................201
TEN STREET CLEANING....................219
ELEVEN THE MEETING OF THE MINDS....................234
ABOUT THE AUTHOR....................275
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Swipe is about a 12 year old boy named Logan Langly. On every citizens 13th Birthday boys and girls alike line up to get their marks. These aren't test grades but rather a tattoo that lets the wearer do everything from getting a job to simple pleasures such as buying an ice cream cone. Unlike most kids his age Logan doesn't want the mark. His sister died several years before getting hers and ever since that day Logan has felt like he's been watched. The Mark that once held such joy now seems like a bad omen and it's up to Logan and his new friend Erin to find out the reason why. Sounds like such a great book doesn't it? Maybe it's because the Book is geared to Middle Graders making it harder to connect with but I just didn't find this book enjoyable at all. Not a single character was likeable. Even the background players annoyed me with their behavior. Logan in particular knew something was going on but instead of going with his gut and reporting it he took the advice of a girl named Erin he's known less then 5 seconds. Speaking of Erin I found her character to be a lot like Hermione Granger except if Hermione was self centered, manipulative and living in a Dystopian society. I certainly think Erin has a larger role to play than she is letting on but as to what that is I can only speculate. The buildup of the entire story was for Logan to come to this big revelation that The Mark was bad. I kept waiting for some insight into why The Dust/unmarked felt this way but right at the end when it's finally revealed all they could come up with is we think so. I'm sorry, but would you take the word of someone trying to kidnap you for weeks on end? I know I wouldn't. Even when that person said my sister is alive, I still wouldn't believe them to the point Logan seems to. Now granted this is a child were talking about with an already fragile psyche but after all he's seen I didn't think he could be that stupid. The entire concept of the Dust/Unmarked children really baffled me. Why kidnap these kids saving them from an unknown fate if nobody is going to parent them? Surely some of the unmarked adults could take them under their wings and create a stable-ish environment for them. The Dust/Unmarked children reminded me of the lost boys from Peter Pan just more savage. I guess my biggest gripe with them is I didn't feel bad for their situation. They all had families who loved them and this guy Peck comes along, kidnaps and brainwashes them then doesn't even take care of them properly. Even if marked rejects died it would be a better fate then that these kids are living in. I really could go on and on nitpicking every little thing that bugged me but I will spare you. In the end the only thing I found quasi enjoyable about this book were the cool DOME gadgets that Erin steals. Sadly that isn't enough to give me back the days I wasted reading this book. I will be giving Swipe by Evan Angler ¿¿. *I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
The world that Evan Angler builds in Swipe is, well...creepy. As stated in the synopsis, at the age of thirteen all citizens are required to get "marked" by the government. The mark is essentially Big Brother's human bar code. Without a mark, you are not eligible to earn money, spend money or have any societal benefits. Those who choose to remain markless end up squating in the slums, scrounging or committing crimes just to eat. I loved the premise of this world, though admittedly the idea freaks me right the hell out. I can imagine a world where the government has a complete 'nanny state' control on it's citizens and I can see them spinning it as a good idea. Perhaps the fact that I can imagine it, is what freaks me out about it. Angler does a great job at taking the imagination to the next level. Logan is a great character. He is so paranoid and scared and written with such care that you really can't help but feel for him. I practically tiptoed around in the dark with him. The other main character, Erin, left me wanting. I couldn't really connect with her. She's a tough girl, brave, confident but not empathetic. That was hard for me to like. She just wasn't very endearing most of the time. But a few of the other characters made up for what I was lacking in her. All in all the story is a good one. My only real fault with this story is that, for a middle grade book, it lacked in action and humor. There is a bit of both, mind you. I'm just not sure there is enough of either to really hold most younger audiences attention. Swipe ends on quite a cliff hanger and I am anxious to read book #2, Sneak which is due out in September. I think it promises much more action, to which I am looking forward to. My Rating 3.5/5 Stars
FINALLY! I think I started this book about 3 or 4 months ago and I¿m just now finishing it. Reading this book was like pulling teeth for me. I had to force myself to read it little by little.I always feel bad when writing a completely bad review of something, especially when I was taught that if you don¿t have anything nice to say don¿t say anything at all. However, I agreed to review this book and give my honest opinion, so that¿s what I¿m going to do.Usually, one of my favorite things about reading Dystopian is learning about this new world that the author has created. I was very disappointed in how we learned about this future world. The only way we learn about it is through Logan¿s studying for his Pledge exam, or just random passages about how things were before. This seemed like a very dry way of presenting the information, almost like reading a history textbook for another world.The character development just wasn¿t there. I didn¿t feel like I really knew Logan, Erin, Dane, Hailey, or any of the other characters. The main character could have been beaten over the head and about to die and I had no problem putting the book down right then. No part of me cared what happened next.I was going to say how boring I thought the story was, but it really wasn¿t that nothing was happening because it was- CONSTANTLY. I think the reason it came across as boring was that there was too much of it (I didn¿t think that was possible) and it was all very anti-climatic and just kept happening. Problem arose¿ problem solved¿. arose¿. solved, and even the things that didn¿t get resolved right away were very predictable, which took away the excitement.The ending was pretty dramatic, definitely trying to hook you for the next book in the series. Unfortunately, I didn¿t take the bait and will not be continuing on with the next book.
This is a great apocalyptic dystopian novel. I really enjoyed it. I'm a big dystopian lover, so even though this was middle grade, it really caught my interest. Though the book is fiction based, it was easy for me to imagine that many of the things in the book could actually happen in the future - The Mark, war, famine, global union, technological advancement with governmental control. I really liked the main character, Logan Langley. Even though he seemed really paranoid in the beginning, which he ended up having good reason for, he displayed outstanding morals, character, and courage in the book. I liked Erin also, she was smart and funny, and even though she and Logan had different ideas about how things should be, they were still able to be good friends. I hope in the next book we get to learn a little bit more about the other characters also. The characters did seem mature for 12 and 13, but if you consider the era they lived in and the way society operated at that time, I would expect that age group to be more mature than today's typical 13 year old. Sometimes I think we don't give those in that age group enough credit. I believe they are a lot smarter than we realize.Swipe was filled with suspense, action, intrigue, and mystery. There was no foul language or sex, and I feel that this is an outstanding middle grade novel. I have two nephews that are 12 and 14, and I can't wait for them to read it. I think that even though Swipe is a really enjoyable work of fiction, that it has the potential to also cause many to stop and think about how things could possibly be in the future, and also challenge you to think about what kind of person you would be under those circumstances. Evan Angler has done a great job writing this novel and I am looking forward to the next book in the series, Sneak, which will come out in the fall.
I loved this book. I am purchasing it for my school bookshelves. I think this will appeal to people of all ages. As an adult I can see our society headed this way. I can only imagine the fear Logan felt when his sister didn¿t return from her trip to get the Mark. I was concerned in the beginning of the book that he was just being paranoid that he was being watched and followed.Erin¿s move to Spokie made me wonder why her mother did not come with them. Her father can stop a question from anyone; just by telling them he works for the government. Any government that is this secretive and deceptive can¿t be that great. This book did have something unique that stuck with me. In the beginning of the book Evan¿s house was describe. Most of the houses are vertical. This means there is one room per floor. I thought this would seem very strange as a living situation. You couldn¿t just walk across the hall to your sister¿s room. You would need to go up or down a floor to see them.This book has enough suspense to hopefully hold the reader until the second book comes out in September. It is called Sneak, and will hopefully answer many questions that are left unanswered. I am grateful to Thomas Nelson¿s BookSneeze program for allowing me to read and review this book. It is one I will promote to my students next year.
In the future, all individuals are eligible to become citizens at the age of thirteen. All they have to do is take the pledge and get the mark, a nano-tattoo on their wrists. The mark allows them to purchase items, take buses, vote and enjoy all rights of full citizenship. As Logan nears his thirteenth birthday he becomes increasingly paranoid, believing he is being followed and watched.I highly enjoyed this book. It was a quick read and the plot moved at a great pace. The characters seemed to be normal teenagers yet did not come across as stereotypical. Overall, this book was very well written. I believe any middle-schooler or teenager would enjoy Swipe.
A great read for young readers. I enjoyed reading swipe and the rest of the series.
This is one of the best dystopian novels I've ever read. I finished it in about 3 days and LOVED it. Erin is my favorite character, with Blake and the Dust close second. Fast-paced action and startling revelations drive the book and it's all-around awesome. I'm currently reading the sequel, Sneak, and I've already puchased book 3, Storm. READ THIS BOOK!!! - A 15-year-old Christian
A review copy was provided for an honest review. Swipe is the first book in a unexpectedly thrilling Dystopian series. Though the demographic aims for middle-graders I certainly didn't have a problem enjoying it. It's written expertly and maybe perhaps a little above the intended reading level as I myself had to look up some of the vocabulary. Regardless, it weaves together action-adventure, espionage, suspense, and futuristic elements wonderfully. I will admit I was extremely skeptical when I first started reading because it didn't hold my interest right away as it's a bit slow in the beginning but I pushed on and soon enough I forgot the slow pace it set because it picked up nicely toward the middle. The characters are interesting, their is a lot of POV swapping which can add some confusion but that eventually clears up enough to not be a reading obstacle. I didn't know how I felt about so many perspectives being thrown at you but once you get near the end of the story it all comes together and its understood as to why you needed to see other viewpoints. Logan, the leading protagonist of the story is paranoid, and scared for his life but when he meets Erin he finally comes out of his shell and starts being a person again. I liked seeing the character development and how Logan starts to act more mature and really grows from a kid into a teenager over the course of a few months. Erin is one of my favorite characters in the book. She's super smart - can hack almost any computer, tough, and resourceful. I thought all the high-tech equipment & technology was really neat, the world is very fascinating on so many levels - I'm excited to see more of it! Fantastic world-building - Evan Angler had a clear vision of the story and it really came through. Ever since the worldwide unification people have no other choice but to receive the Mark. When you reach the age of thirteen that's when you are given it; it provides you citizenship benefits—everything you need to live in the world. Those who refuse it are left in the cold—to starve with no way to get food other than thievery, no currency to buy anything with, and no access to society. The Markless are shunned into a horrific existence but twelve-year-old Logan Langly is wary to receive his. After his sister turned 13 and never returned from getting the Mark he's had a difference of opinion as to the safety that it offers. He becomes withdrawn and afraid since his sister's disappearance he's felt like he's being watched every day 24/7. His parents think it's all in his head until he catches a Markless following him—then his worst fears are confirmed. Erin is thirteen and newly moved from Beacon—a wealthy division and more sophisticated city in comparison to Spokie—but she detests her new life. Things start to look up when she meets a boy named Logan who can possibly help her make her way back to her old home. After sharing stories Logan and Erin decide that they can work together to achieve their goals by unraveling the mystery of the Markless but they get in too deep and things don't go as planned... Swipe is a lot better once you start to understand what is going on. It will take you by surprise multiple times, although some are easy to see coming other twists will shock you. The ending will leave you sitting with your mouth agape! I was really glad to have the next novel at hand so I could dive into what left me hanging in Swipe's conclusion. Swipe is not only well written but has an unusual fresh story that's engaging and impressively engrossing. I was glad to have read it and I'm even more psyched for the second book titled Sneak. A great mature middle-grade adventure that has a little of everything—it'll have you very intrigued.
In Swipe, 13 year olds are treated as 18 year olds. When they turn 13, they get this "mark" - a tattoo planted on their wrist so they are able to have access on everything. But does everyone survive when they get the mark? Hm.. Does everyone choose to get a mark? It is told from a 3rd person point of view, and although I enjoy reading books with 1st person, I think this book is better as being told from 3rd person because it adds a mysterious effect to the book. Swipe is quite unique because the chapters are broken off into sections by numbers. At first I thought it would switch off to 3 alternating viewpoints because in the summary it said "Swipe follows the lives of three kids caught in the middle of a conflict." It is a fresh dystopian read that really started with a bang. The first chapter was really creepy (in a good way) and you really want to keep on turning the page. I had trouble in the middle though. The pacing was starting to be a bit slow and I lost interest in the story for a bit because of that. Not much action was taking place; it was more about background info on the characters. About 3/4 of the book though, wow. There was a lot of action and twists that I was totally unaware of. I really did not see those coming. I wish there was more of that in the middle of the book though too. Anyways, I am talking about chapter 8 till the very last chapter. Yes, I even remember what chapter the surprises were coming. I couldn't help but read till the very last page. I HAD to know what was going to happen to Logan! And boy, Logan is really an interesting character. You'll know what I mean once you read the first chapter. Yup. He is a mysterious and unique protagonist. Also, I think he's mature for his own age which surprised me and made me like him more. The characters were all awesome and reminded me of those "elementary/middle school" times. There were puppy love mixed with adventure and all sorts of craziness in this book. Overall this book falls in the middle for me. It's not bad, but I didn't loved it. I enjoyed it (especially the ending) and recommend it to ya/middle-grade dystopian lovers.
Interesting characters and story line. An interesting perspective and demonstration of what prejudice looks like. Shawnee
To Be Marked or Markless? In a future US, where there has been a fracture with the states and the whole country has gone through a governmental change there is now a Mark system. Those that are Markless are either under the age of 13 or are what society feels are the unwanted. These unwanted have, for whatever reason, chosen not to go Marked. What is the Mark? It's a digitized system, placed into your arm that allows you the freedoms to vote, work, etc. Okay, so it's big brother watching you. But being Marked is considered what upstanding citizens have done and that it allows the country to be in balance. The story starts off with Logan, who's 2 months shy of turning 13, therefore 2 months shy of being Marked. He feels he's being watched. Enter Erin, she is Marked and she has moved to the town where Logan lives because of her fathers government work. Erin discovers what her fathers job basically is, without him telling her, she is turns realizes that the person the government, in this case DOME, is after is the person who has been following Logan. Why? They aren't sure yet. To complicate matters worse, when they do get some good info, Erin decides that they sleuth it out themselves instead of notifying the higher ups. When they do get involved, there is a distinct shift in the story. There is also a revelation that not only makes Logan shocked, but will also throw you into going wha-wha-wha? There is action, jealousy, conspiracies, kidnappings, etc all wrapped into this book. There are times the story lags, but keep on going, the pace will pick up again. For the majority of the book, you're biggest questions is why Logan? Near the end you get the answer, and after thinking about it you totally get it. There are many books out there that you think, this could/would never happen, but this is a book that has a story that you could see happen so it really hits home. The second book is available, it's titled Sneak with the 3rd book, Storm, expected in May of this year. I've got to see where this story goes, especially with the majority if the backstory done.
Logan Langly is twelve years old living in the small town of Spokie, a part of New Chicago. Soon he will receive his Mark allowing him to get a job, ride public transport and purchase things. It’s a right of passage, the right of pledging to become a full citizen of American Union. Everyone is excited to get his or her Mark this year, everyone that is except for Logan. Five years previously, Logan’s sister Lily went for her Mark but never returned. Ever since that tragic day Logan has been convinced he’s being watched, hunted with no idea why. When he goes for his Mark, he’s sure to come back isn’t he? The bumps in the night sing a different tune and Logan will have to make up his mind what to believe in before his 13th birthday and time is running out. I was surprised and unaware that this book was written for the middle school range. It took me a while to remember my books of my youth such as Animorphs and Goosebumps to get my head around this kind of story. It’s a bit younger than what I like but once I was able to get into the right age frame I grew to enjoy the book and was impressed with the effective story telling. Swipe is more than just a story of a missing sister, there is so much more to this new North American world. The aspect of politics is slowly introduced and the struggles of family life because of survival make this a darker read than I expected. The characters are full of life and each has a clear and consistent voice. Most of the characters are male as well and although ‘romance’ is slightly present it doesn’t distract from the real heart of the story: reuniting a family. An excellent book for boys who don’t like to read, I’d suggest Angler’s series to anyone who has a tween-aged reader.
If you liked the Hunger Games and Divergent, you will love this book. It is not as violent as Hunger Games so it is great for a tween/teen. The main character is a boy, so my 12 year old son will actually read it. I bought it for my 12 year old niece for Christmas and she loved it. She read it in one day and immediately ordered the sequel. The plot moves quickly and takes the reader to mysterious and dangerous places, introducing them to interesting and funny characters. The ending is exciting and leaves the reader yearning for more. I can't wait to get the second book!
I began reading the second novel in this series first, which was a mistake. It kept me confused about the meaning of several tools they use. So, I picked up Swipe, and totally entered this dystopian world of the future of evolved technologies and one world vision. After the “Total War” everybody is thankful just to be allowed to live, and doesn’t examine the requirements of the leaders. Each person must swear their allegiance and then they receive a tattoo like marking on their arm that allows them to function in society. When Logan’s sister dies when she goes in to make her pledge, Logan’s family begins to fall apart, and Logan believes that he is being watched. I definitely think that this series should be a hit with middle school and older students. The writing is tense enough that you will check over your shoulder to make sure you are not being watched. The book is clean, but the sense of ‘big evil government’ permeates the story. A must read for dystopian lovers, as well as those who enjoy a good mystery.
Loved how the author incorporated the one world government, currency , and the "mark". How the hold-outs became "markless" in a society where Christianity is all but forgotten..
After reading the synopsis of this book, I was so excited to get into. Finally a book that I know will give me goosebumps as well as the truth of the Lord. First off, the plot is really good. I really loved the setting of the world that Logan is in. he is faced with lots of questions that he gets no answers too. He is searching for answer but his time is running out. The plot build up is sort of slow but quickly picks up the pace with much action by the markless. The world building of the fallen world with the ruin that are left to stand are great! I loved how easily the reader is able to let their imagination run away with them. Logan meets other characters that help him along way. Though I am glad they help him I am disappointed in one thing. The truth. God's Word. I was hoping that by the end of the book Logan would learn the real reason by the mark and not just because he is questioning if it is wrong or right. Know what I mean? I wanted Logan to stand and be courageous!! Instead in the end, the reader is left with many questions and Logan on the run. Swipe is a great start of an awesome series. It has so much that can be build on, that the possibilities are endless. Never a dull moment, Swipe is great!
Interesting plot, but I would have liked to see the characters developed more and the relationships between the various characters given more depth. I will be looking forward to the next book to see where this unique plot leads. Maybe it will be a little longer then 200 pages.