The Low Down: This is the future, where there is no longer a world as it once was. The United States has been broken down into walled areas with a lot of space in between. There are only four races recognized, four pureblood races that can live inside these cities, eat well, get an education, prosper. Everyone else lives outside the walls. These outside areas are full of mixed-race people living in deplorable conditions. Mutts. Scraping by without much to eat, a decent place to live or medicine. Someone does rule the wilderness, imposing taxes, ruling by mob enforcement and controlling the drug trade, but taking care of the “subjects” is way down at the bottom of the list.
Timothy is in great need of medical attention that he can’t get on the outside. He makes a hazardous journey to the city of Rittenhouse, looking for the man who can help him. Emery is the man, a pureblood who has made his house and property a safe haven for those outsiders who need help that they cannot get otherwise. Together, they must leave the safe confines of Emery’s home, elude the local guards, sneak out of the city and find the de facto leader of the Mutts so Timothy can survive. While Timothy wonders why a pureblood would help a mutt, Emery wonders why he can’t help more of them.
Best Thang ‘Bout It: The story starts to lay itself out nicely in the beginning, presenting the questions and mysteries that are to come. The descriptions of the people, the landscape, the action are all vivid and evocative. The story picked up again for me at the end.
I’m Cranky Because: The dialogue, at times, was not on par with the storytelling. It could be trite or limp at times. The action was a little slow-moving. I felt like there was a lot of information that I didn’t have as well; things would be mentioned, almost in passing, and I wasn’t sure at the time if it was important. For example, there was no talk of magic, then it is mentioned. In another instance, a guard disappears in a cloud of dust. I was left to wonder: real dust? Or did he disappear or turn into something else? It seemed more like an afterthought. I actually got more information from the synopsis on Amazon regarding the back story.
I would have liked to know more about the state of the country, why there are purebloods, how the mutts were removed from society. I just don’t know what weight to give to these things.
To Read or Not To Read: This was a hard one for me. I really went back and forth over my rating; I personally didn’t think it was a solid read; it wavered back and forth between good and meh. Others thought differently, and you can click the links below to see their reviews. I will leave it at that.
Mutt by Evan Fuller was published December 1, 2011 by Lords of Autumn. A free copy of this book was given to Ink and Page in return for an honest review.
Genre: Young Adult Science Fiction Dystopian
Ages: 14 and up
You Might Want to Know:Mild profanity