ANYONE?

If the thought of wanting a guardian angel has never crossed your mind, believe me, you will want one named Cole after reading young adult author Angela Scott’s ANYONE?.  Set in an apocalyptic America, ANYONE? follows seventeen-year-old Tess as she searches for her father and brother while trying to stay alive amidst ruins and the absence of any inkling of civilization.

Ms. Scott accurately captures the thoughts of this youthful protagonist with the interjection of humor, “I couldn’t believe how out of shape I’d become.  I wasn’t a super athletic person, but I did P.E. every other day at school, which should count for something- all those laps and dodging balls”  (Loc 374-375).

Furthermore, while evaluating the dire situation, Tess’ adolescent reasoning makes sense, “People had left a lot of great things behind, so wherever they went they left in a hurry.  No one leaves Doc Martens and Beatles’  tees behind.  No one”  (Loc 758-759).

While meeting hunky Cole in the local Rite Aid, we learn Cole, too, has a sense of humor when he throws a chocolate bar at Tess’ feet on the assumption her unpleasant attitude could be attributed to premenstrual syndrome, “He removed a candy bar from his pocket and tossed it at my feet.  ‘Look, chocolate.’  Then he turned and took off down the aisle ”  (Loc 1192).

Besides Cole’s sense of humor, he speaks with much wisdom to Tess, “‘Texting?  Why do kids insist on finding ways to be less and less sociable?  Call your friends and actually talk to them, or better yet, write them a note. . . .  Somehow, even without phones, we managed to communicate and meet up at the right places at the right time'”  (Loc 1152-1153).

The allusions found in ANYONE? to other literary works throughout is refreshing with If You Give a Mouse a Cookie and, of course, The Hunger Games, two of my favorites.  Not to mention Tess’ claim, “‘Like I said, the book was better.  Books are always better'” (Loc 3448) brings tears of joy to my eyes.

Now, of course, the English teacher within must make note of errors . . .

“to need to me” (Loc 171), eliminate second “to”

“If dad or Toby were alive”  (Loc 393), here “dad” should be capitalized

“He squatted in front on me”  (Loc 962), “of” for “on”

“motel onninth and ninth” (Loc 1060), space between “on” and “ninth”

“of a wide-eyed figure stared through the store window”  (Loc 2306), replace “stared” with “staring”

“A chill still hung in there air”  (Loc 3526), “the” for “there”

And, Cole’s bed is initially introduced as a “queen bed” (Loc 1730), but later referred to as “the huge king-sized bed” (Loc 1905).

All in all, an entertaining read which maintains suspense until the very end and leaves the reader (or at least me) contemplating an angel tattoo of his/her own.

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