by Elizabeth Guizzetti
Published on April 1, 2012 by 48Fourteen
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult
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Without an influx of human DNA, the utopian colony on Kipos has eleven generations before it reaches failure. With Earth over ninety light-years away. Time is short.
On the over-crowded Earth, many see opportunity in Kipos's need. After medical, intelligence, and physiological testing, Abby and her younger siblings, Jin and Orchid, are offered transportation. Along with 750,000 other strong young immigrants, they leave the safety of their family with the expectation of good jobs and the opportunity for higher education.
While these second-generation colonists travel to the new planet in stasis, the Kiposi, terrified that Earthlings will taint their paradise, pass a series of indenture and adoption laws in order to assimilate the savages.
When Abby wakes up on Kipos, Jin cannot be found. Orchid is ripped from her arms as Abby is sold to a dull-eyed man with a sterilized wife. Indentured to breed, she is drugged and systematically coerced. To survive, Abby learns the differences in culture and language using the only thing that is truly hers on this new world: her analytical mind. To escape, she joins a planetary survey team where she will discover yet another way of life.
Let me start by saying I am fairly picky about the science fiction novels I read, and I took a chance on Other Systems. It was worth it. This book is believable in a way that many sci-fi novels I’ve read aren’t. There are real problems, the story doesn’t revolve around some romance or another, and the characters don’t necessarily get their happily ever after. Their actions have consequences and I like that it plays out throughout the novel instead of having a fluffy ending.
It took me a few chapters to get used to Abby but after that, I found myself cheering her on through all the struggles she endures. A novel should make the character fight for what they want–this fits perfectly with that. I can guarantee when you’re reading Other Systems, not only will you be enthralled by the world Guizzetti creates but you’ll be right there alongside Abby and her friends.
This book does have some adult themes and language so I wouldn’t recommend it for younger readers. It’s perfect for fans of science fiction and lovers of intricate worlds, one of which Guizzetti provides in detail in Other Systems. A great read!