Proxy

Alex London, Author
Alex London. Philomel, $17.99 (384p) ISBN 978-0-399-25776-6
Paperback - 379 pages - 978-0-14-751133-1
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London (the Accidental Adventures series) moves from middle-grade to YA with an entertaining throwback to ’70s dystopias like Logan’s Run, offering intriguing moral dilemmas amid breakneck action. Knox is a spoiled rich kid who spends his time doing drugs, seducing girls, and occasionally stealing a car for a joyride. He has nothing to worry about, because whenever he gets in trouble, it’s his Proxy—a slum resident and tech genius named Syd—who pays the price, since he’s tied to Knox as a result of crippling debt he was born into. When Knox’s recklessness gets his latest conquest killed, the consequences and the boys’ reactions lead to fast-paced chases, conspiratorial revelations, and assorted twists. London has no qualms about killing off his characters, major or minor, and the matter-of-fact presence of a gay lead (Syd) in an action-driven story is welcome and overdue. Some scenes (like Syd’s early escape from “justice”) over-rely on coincidence or tech that fails in just the right way, but the novel’s ethical questions, tense relationships, and exciting battles will carry readers swiftly through. Ages 12–up. Agent: Robert Guinsler, Sterling Lord Literistic. (June)
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