Tuesday 31 July 2012

213. The Tribe Book 1: The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf by Ambelin Kwaymullina

The Tribe Book 1: The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf by Ambelin Kwaymullina
Published July 2012 Walker

From the publisher:
Ashala Wolf has been captured by Chief Administrator Neville Rose. A man who is intent on destroying Ashala’s Tribe - the runaway Illegals hiding in the Firstwood. Injured and vulnerable and with her Sleepwalker ability blocked, Ashala is forced to succumb to the machine that will pull secrets from her mind. And right beside her is Justin Connor, her betrayer, watching her every move. Will the Tribe survive the interrogation of Ashala Wolf?

This story is set in the future, where the world as we know it has changed.  There are no more separate countries and continents, there are no separate nations, this is no 'race'.  There was a great chaos known as the 'Reckoning', after which few humans survived and a single landmass emerged after the shifting of the tectonic plates.  People now live in the cities and towns, with the exception of those who are different.  

Detention centres have become home to those who are different, those who have abilities which the government sees as threatening to the Balance.  Some children have come willingly, taken from their families after being assessed.  Some, like Ashala have come as prisoners.  Ashala is the leader of a group called The Tribe, a group of children with abilities who are living in the Firstwood.  The believe they have the right to be free.  These people, under the new laws, are considered to be illegals, and the government want them contained.

Neville Rose is the head of the detention centre, and he want Ashala because of what she knows.  When he finds that Ashala is not willing to give him this information, he has no choice but to use 'the machine', a machine that is capable of forcing the memories from Ashala's brain.

The story starts in the present day, and then goes back to see what has happened before, four years, 6 months and 4 months, until we are back to where we started. There are a lot of twists and turns in this book, and just when you think you understand what is going on, you realise that you don't.  As the mystery of what information Neville is trying to obtain from Ashala unfolds, there is also the relationship between Ashala and her guard Connor.  At the beginning of the story Ashala is filled with hate for this person she used to know, who has now become her captor, but like with the other elements of this story, everything is not as it seems.

There is not as much action as a book like The Hunger Games, but it definitely has a similar feel to it, and like the Hunger Games, this is only the beginning, more books will be on their way.

Who will like this book: Boys and Girls age 11+
Read it if you like: The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

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