August 30, 2011

{Teen Book Scene} Review: The Predicteds by Christine Seifert


The Predicteds

Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire (September 1, 2011)
Paperback: 320 Pages
Genre: YA Contemporary
Christine Seifert's Website | Blog

From Goodreads. Daphne is the new girl in town and is having trouble fitting in. At least she has Jesse... sort of. He wants to be more than "just friends," but there's something he's not telling her about his past. Something dangerous. When a female student is brutally attacked, police turn to PROFILE, a new program that can predict a student's capacity for drug use, pregnancy, and violent behavior, to solve the case. As the witch hunt ensues, Daphne is forced to question her feelings for Jesse-and what she will do if her first love turns out to be a killer.



Review by Kate
THE PREDICTEDS, by Christine Seifert, is a mind-bending thriller about a computer program that can 'predict' future behavior based on mental testing of teenagers. Questions about the morality of the program arise causing a severe separation between the lawful and unlawful students.

The inital impression I got from the summary of the book was that it would be compared to The Minority Report, where three Seers helped the police catch a criminal right before they committed a crime. In actuality the PROFILE computer program lingered in the background of the story more than I thought it would. It wasn't very action-y but the character-driven story was anything but boring.

The book started out with a school shooting that immediately hooked me. I wanted to know how these kids would cope with the terrible situation, especially Daphne who came close to the business part of the gun. Her rescuer, Jesse, stole my heart just as he did to Daphne's. But with rumors of his character and being a predicted, I had no clue what his real motives were and I tagged along with Daphne in her moments of doubt with the boy who 'loved' her.

Being an outsider, Daphne had trouble in her quest to figure out what happened to a girl who was brutally beaten. Secrets and lies floated just out of her reach and culminated into a dangerous climax that will definitely linger in your mind long after the book is finished.

The PROFILE program was flawless in its design but I had so many issues with it, which I think was probably the point. The idea that a computer program could predict if a person was susceptible to certain ways of life is plausible, but so is the idea that telling someone that they will murder someone in their lifetime could make them believe it even if they had no idea they had those thoughts in their mind. Also, when the school separated the predicteds from the non-predicteds, they created a worse situation for everyone by causing a rift between those who were supposedly dangerous from those who weren't. But then on the other hand, the ability to predict a criminal before they, for example, bring a gun to a school or beat on a defenseless girl, could be a very valuable commodity. Along with the storyline, questions about the PROFILE program bounced back and forth in my mind. I still have no idea which choice is better, but I do know that in this story the school officials definitely went overboard in the wrong direction by making everyone know the predicted status of the students.

This book did not meet my initial expectations, but I really enjoyed where in went. The characters really drove this story and I will definitely keep an eye out for more from Christine Seifert.

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