Candor by Pam Bachorz
I like the concept for this book. In a “perfect” town in Florida, everyone listens to subliminal messages that makes them “model” people. This is especially important for the children and teens, as this community tends to attract families with troubled kids who are guaranteed that their offspring will transform into perfect Candor children within a few weeks. The messages are concepts like:
Academics are the key to success
Never waste our natural resources
Healthy breakfasts make for smart minds
Although the messages might seem harmless, they completely control everyone in the town; in fact, they become physically addicted to them although most people don’t know that. But Oscar Banks is different. While he might seem like the ideal Candor high school student, he can “hear” and tune out the messages, and has an illegal business where he sneaks the richest kids out of town before they become Candor zombies. What’s especially ironic is that Oscar’s father is the one who designed the city, runs the place, and creates and sends out all the messages. When Oscar falls for the newest girl in school, he wants to save Nia from becoming like everyone else, but can’t face the fact of helping her escape and having to live without her. What’s a boy to do?
I like this book, but was expecting to love it based on all the reviews and librarian comments I had read. The story is engaging, just not as exciting as I had anticipated. I DID love the ending; it was unexpected and the author didn’t take the easy way out.