The fourth book in the Uglies 'trilogy', Extras, takes place in post-'mind-rain' Japan a couple of years after Tally Youngblood destroyed the Pretties system. Japan, along with the rest of the world, is adapting to the freedom of thought that people had so long been deprived of. New cultural norms have emerged, and Japan's 'reputation economy' is one of these. It ties wealth and fame together at a whole new level, making most everybody want fame more than anything else.

Enter fifteen-year-old Aya Fuse, who's just as desirous of fame as the next person. She's a kicker, and always has Moggle (her hovercam) by her side. She is constantly searching for a great story to kick, one that might take her out of panic-making obscurity. One that might make her famous. But with a face rank of 451,369 (out of a million), there is little chance of that happening. That is, until she stumbles upon the story of a lifetime. But she gets more than she bargained for when she kicks it, and fame ends up being difficult. And, in her case, dangerous.

For an Uglies/Pretties/Specials fan such as myself, it was awesome to return to Westerfeld's creepy future earth. I couldn't help but notice that the reputation economy makes a lot sense. Which is creepy. We're already fame obsessed enough as it is.

Extras is really quite a wonderful book. It was well tied-in with the three preceding books, but has enough new developments so as not to be repetitive. Aya is a great character. She's endearing but imperfect. And sometimes you get really mad at her.

Which means, of course, that Westerfeld has done his job very well.

Five daggers out of five.

Wanting to mag-lev surf*...

*What is mag-lev surfing, you ask? I don't think I'll tell you. Read the book.


An economy based on fame.* Creepy people with too many joints. Japan. People who surge themselves to look like manga characters. Tally Youngblood. Hoverboards.

Dude, Extras is awesome.

And, as many of you probably know (on account of the link from his blog), we saw Scott Westerfeld talk/sign books... it was pretty darn cool, yo. Justine Larbalestier was also there (author of the Magic or Madness trilogy), which was also pretty darn cool, yo.

So... five out of five. Yep.

*Which would possibly work better than our current economy. I mean, it's creepy, but it would totally work.

Hoverboarding, kicking, mag-lev-riding, fame-seeking,

PS Reese: email us! Quick, before the dark lord of all evil finds out!

I finished reading Extras and I adored it. Tally-wa...Tally makes me incredibly happy. I love her super-specialness and "I'm a loner" attitude and her "just accept me or don't - - I don't care" outlook.

I give this wonderful book, the full 5 daggers.

Nonbubble-headedly yours,
Twyla Lee


Bri said...


Bri said...

hey quick question, who drew that picture of you guys. its really awesome!

Yours Truly said...

Illustrator MJ Manning captured the Evil Cousins perfectly, don't you think? (She has a website link at the very bottom of the blog.)

Wannabe Writer said...

Awesome book! I wish there was more on Tally, though. And I hate that cover, no offense. The ones with the faces are SO much better.

lunaeclipse1210 said...

i started reading the series for my next door neighbor/one of my best friends was reading uglies and well...i kinda follow her book work...(she read uglies, i did too...she read twilight, i did too..and so on and so forth) so anyways...i read extras and woah!! it was good! i completely agree with everything everyone has said. sad thing was though...even with all the names and everything...i didn't realize it took place in japan until it said like "he spoke a little in japanese" yah i know...how can i be so blind? well yah go extras!! ^_^

Mai in Wonderland said...

I live in Japan right now and I'm also reading the book "Extras." It's really interesting to think about the changes that could happen in order to change the economy. When I ride a regular train I think about somene surfing :D