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Showing posts with label pandemic. Show all posts
Showing posts with label pandemic. Show all posts

Review of Cleo Porter and the Body Electric -- where Fiction and Reality Meet

 

Disclosure: I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

The Great Depression, the Great War, the Great Recession and now the Great Separation. Today I get to share with you a new book that is amazing it was published this year and written before this year. As we are living through the Covid-19 Pandemic and thinking about wearing masks and social distancing, imagine if the pandemic was even worse and thus the Great Separation. Before we knew about Covid-19, Jake Burt wrote Cleo Porter and the Body Electric. And that is amazing!!


Twelve-year-old Cleo Porter lives in an apartment with her mother and father. The apartment has no doors or windows. It has a chute where drones drop off deliveries. The only human contact is with one another and everything else is done through simulation. In 2027 there had been an awful pandemic caused by Influenza D. The virus mutated with every person it moved to so there was no cure and it wiped out half the population. The solution was to lock everyone into apartments without doors or windows and have no outside physical contact. It has been decades since the last known case of Influenza D but the people live this way because it is safe. Cleo wants to be a drone surgeon like her mother. She has been studying to become a doctor from an early age and has a big test looming over her. But then something really strange happens. A medicine package gets delivered to their apartment with someone else's name. Everyone says it is impossible. The medicine is for brain swelling and it could be life or death. Cleo is worried for the unknown person. She feels the need to get the medicine to her, but how? The only way in and out of the apartment is the delivery chute. Cleo manages to get out with only machines to keep her company. She is off on an adventure that will change her whole life.

Can we start with how eye-opening this book is while living through a lesser pandemic? It puts our struggles into a different light. Social distancing and masks for a matter of months (or even a year) are nothing compared to never seeing the real sky and meeting people in person. There are messages throughout the book as well including from one of the people who chose not to be locked away. There are so many interesting depths to this book as well as questions that could be used for a class discussion. I put together some discussion questions for you. 

The story itself is intriguing and pulls the reader in. It flows and is suspenseful. You want to turn the page and continue reading to find out what happens next and to make sense of this new world. I hope you will check out this book. I know I told Hazel a bit about it and she wants to read it next!