Most of the time the descriptions of books are what drags you into a story. They are the main tool that gets readers to want to pick up that particular books. If the description isn’t good it is highly unlikely that a reader will want to read further. Well for The Predicteds the description dragged me in, but I don’t think it gave the story justice. I think this book is missing out on some readers because you don’t get a feel for what is really happening in this story. You see, The Predicteds isn’t some dystopian story about science and technology telling us who are good kids and bad kids as the cover and the book overview would make you think. The Predicteds is a contemporary story about discrimination, segregation and fear of the unknown.
I don’t think there are enough YA stories out there about this topic. Sure you get the bullying aspect in a lot of books with the ever popular mean girls. And then you have books like Hate List by Jennifer Brown that deals with a shooting at a high school and Shine by Lauren Myracle which deals with discrimination and a hate crime, but very rarely do you get an in-depth look at discrimination in a school. The Predicteds did it in a way that made it seem real and really hit home. Because of a test that was performed people were given labels and these labels instilled fear in an undereducated community. These people that were considered the Predicteds were basically guilty and would never be proven innocent. The community became divided and sides were drawn. And right smack in the middle of this was Daphne.
Daphne was the new girl in Quiet. She moved from Minnesota was immediately made herself known. Not only did she almost choke to death on her first day of school, only to be saved by Jesse, she also was a vicitim of a school shooting that took place on the same day, again being saved by Jesse. Dealing with the trauma of the shooting pushes Daphne closer to Jesse and to girls she wouldn’t normally be friends with. And as the school year progresses, as does Daphne and Jesse’s relationship a whole host of trouble is thrust upon her. After a girl that is no doubt a Predicted is attacked Daphne has to decide who to believe and what side she is on.
I have to say I had a love hate relationship with Daphne and a confusing one with Jesse. Daphne was just a little too wishy washy at times for me and it annoyed. She was so smart and saw things so clearly and yet she let people dictate what she did and what she believed even if her gut and heart told her other wise. She frustrated me when she was with the girls because she was a sheep and not the girl she used to be. Instead of doing what she wanted she did what they wanted just so she would fit in and by doing that she pushed away people that she could have been really good friends with and people she could have leaned on and vice versa. She took the easy way out and I wasn’t crazy about that. I mean eventual she got it, but getting there bothered me. And Jesse. I didn’t know what to make of Jesse. He was written a little all over the place. He seemed sweet and normal and then he would act all shady and weird. He was a knight and shinning armor for Daphne but all these other people had these stories about him and it just didn’t all add up. I think what bothered me was that it seemed to be a plot point to get to the end. The mystery was there to keep things moving, but I’m not sure it was needed. In the end I liked both of them and I liked them as a couple but getting there was exasperating for sure.
Basically the bottom line of this story is discrimination and segregation and that part was written very well and very realistic. Like the 1960s people were split up by fear of the unknown causing sides to be formed and barriers to be crossed. Reading how the Predicteds were separated and made to be kept apart really sickened me. There was no factual proof that these people were going to be a problem and yet they were guilty no matter how you cut it. It really was a nice look at what could happen if things like racial profiling and the like got out of hand. Minus a few hiccups with the main characters I wish there were more stories like this out there.