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Proxy
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Proxy
Proxy Series, Book 1
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“Put down what you’re doing and read this book. Right now. The complex characters, intricate world, and blistering pace are off-the-charts amazing.” —Marie Lu, author of the...
“Put down what you’re doing and read this book. Right now. The complex characters, intricate world, and blistering pace are off-the-charts amazing.” —Marie Lu, author of the...
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  • “Put down what you’re doing and read this book. Right now. The complex characters, intricate world, and blistering pace are off-the-charts amazing.” —Marie Lu, author of the Legend trilogy
    Syd’s life is not his own. As a proxy he must to pay for someone else's crimes. When his patron Knox crashes a car and kills someone, Syd is branded and sentenced to death. The boys realize the only way to beat the system is to save each other so they flee. The ensuing cross-country chase will uncover a secret society of rebels, test the boys' resolve, and shine a blinding light onto a world of those who owe and those who pay.
    This fast-paced thrill ride of a novel is full of breakneck action, shocking twists and heart-hammering suspense that will have readers gasping until the very last page.
    This edition includes a exclusive bonus story featuring Syd and Knox!
    “Looking for an awesome YA summer read? Look no further than Alex London’s Proxy.” —EW.com
    Whipping Boy + Blade Runner with a sprinkling of The Hunger Games (plus, of course, a dash of A Tale of Two Cities) = a treat for teen SF fans.” —Kirkus Reviews
 

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Excerpts-

  • From the book PROXY    By Alex London         “Both were being denied their childhoods: the prince by a smothering excess of privilege, [the whipping boy] by none at all.”—Sid Fleischman   “In the… landscape ahead, you will either create the software or you will be the software.” —Douglas Rushkoff1
     Even a perfect machine wasn’t built to go this fast.
     Knox knew it, but still he pressed harder on the accelerator. Ripples of heat blurred the air around the car, and the girl in the passenger seat squealed.

     Terror? Delight? Did it matter?

     He took a turn too sharply, felt the stabilizer engine straining. His windshield lit up with warnings: lane markers flashing red, speed indicators blinking. Sweat beaded on his upper lip, but the car held the road.

     “R U glitched?” popped up in his datastream in translucent green letters. He could see through them to the pavement, but they were impossible to ignore.

     He glanced at the girl, giggling to cover her nerves.

     They curved up the speedway, slicing like heat lightning over the slums of the Lower City, past the blast-barriers and security fences, rising higher and higher. There were parts of the Mountain City you just didn’t go if you were lux, parts you didn’t even see. The city below them blurred. The city beside them gleamed. Knox accelerated.

     “srsly?!” blinked double-sized in front of Knox, each letter wiggling and changing colors. The font was chunky; the y swished like a cat’s tail. Very retro. Probably custom made for her by some trendy for-hire coder. Her hands waved in the air in front of the windshield, swiping out another text.“ :) ” she added.
     Suddenly, her smiley face vanished.

     “Reduce Speed…Reduce Speed…Reduce Speed…” scrolled in front of Knox in an unfriendly industrial font. All the road signs and advertisements now said the same thing: “Danger Danger Danger.”

     Knox waved off the Augmented Reality hook up. You weren’t supposed to be able to turn it off, but Knox had yet to find a security system he couldn’t hack. AR driving was for amateurs and accountants anyway. He gunned the car forward. The speed pressed him against the auto-cooled leather seats.

     “You even know how to drive?” the girl cried out loud, her voice shrill and excited.

     Knox didn’t say a word. He liked to let the growl of the engine do the talking.

     He also couldn’t remember the girl’s name.

     Amy? Pam?

     Something old fashioned. He shot her another glance, his emerald eyes flashing mischief. He smirked.

     That usually did the trick.

     She was new in Mr. Kumar’s History of Robotics class, a transfer from home schooling. She liked the animations Knox hacked onto the public display on top of their teacher’s scowling face. Sometimes Knox gave Mr. Kumar devil horns or a top hat or made it look like he was lecturing them from a seedy strip club in the lower city. The girl had complimented Knox’s work on her first day at school.

     Mr. Kumar never had any idea his image had been hacked. He just talked away from his wood paneled office at EduCorp. He couldn’t figure out why the kids always laughed so hard at his lectures. Not that he could do anything about it. They were all paying customers and could laugh all they wanted. That was a perk of going to a...

Reviews-

  • Publisher's Weekly

    April 29, 2013
    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.

  • Kirkus

    May 1, 2013
    Sixteen-year-old Syd is a good guy; but he's "proxy" to a "patron," so Syd has to pay for someone else's crimes. In a post-apocalyptic, near future, gay teen Sydney Carton was a "swampcat" orphan from the eastern wastes of what was once America. The Benevolent Society rescued him, named him after the Dickens character and charged him for the rescue as well as his future education. (Two other orphans are named Tom Sawyer and Atticus Finch.) To repay that debt, they assigned him to be a proxy for Knox Brindle, whose father runs the powerful SecuriTech company. Whenever Knox acts up, Syd is punished, sometimes violently. When Knox's antics kill a girl, Syd's sentenced to years of hard labor on top of the debt he still owes. Fed up, Syd escapes and accidentally comes face to face with Knox, who's beginning to wonder if he isn't the one who owes a debt to his proxy. As the boys avoid the Guardians, they discover that the secret to forgiving everyone's debts may be in Syd's blood. Accidental Adventures author London drops his first initial for his teen debut, a smart, stylish science-fiction thriller that deftly weaves big issues like guilt, accidents of birth, redemption and commerce into a page-turning read. Whipping Boy + Blade Runner with a sprinkling of The Hunger Games (plus, of course, a dash of A Tale of Two Cities) = a treat for teen SF fans. (Science fiction. 12 & up)

    COPYRIGHT(2013) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    August 1, 2013

    Gr 8 Up-Knox is a "patron," a privileged and wealthy citizen of Mountain City. His only concerns are hacking, scoring with girls, and causing trouble while angering his bigwig dad. His proxy, a person who is contractually obligated to serve out Knox's punishments, is a gay teen. In exchange for working as a proxy, Syd is able to pay off his debts. When Knox accidentally kills a girl, 16 years at the Old Sterling Work Colony is too great a punishment for Syd to bear, so he escapes. An action-packed thrill ride ensues where Syd meets up with Knox, who helps him flee. As the pair dive further into their escape plan, new truths are revealed and a growing birthmark that preoccupies Syd turns out to be a secret message uploaded into his DNA by his father. Proxy is full of plot twists, and London creates a well-developed dystopian world. Initially, readers will have to overlook coincidental circumstances, such as the fact that Syd and Knox meet when their society forbids it and that they both play important roles in their world. However, the story's rhythm and complexities rush readers through these liberties, and London's novel will grab readers. Recommend it to students who are interested in tech-laden, dystopian science fiction.-Adrienne L. Strock, Chicago Public Library

    Copyright 2013 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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