Rating: 4 Stars
The Blurb: In America’s Gulf Coast region, where grounded oil tankers are being broken down for parts, Nailer, a teenage boy, works the light crew, scavenging for copper wiring just to make quota–and hopefully live to see another day. But when, by luck or chance, he discovers an exquisite clipper ship beached during a recent hurricane, Nailer faces the most important decision of his life: Strip the ship for all it’s worth or rescue its lone survivor, a beautiful and wealthy girl who could lead him to a better life…
In this powerful novel, award-winning author Paolo Bacigalupi delivers a thrilling, fast-paced adventure set in a vivid and raw, uncertain future.
This book has been on my TBR list forever, but it not what I normally read, so I hesitated to pick it up many, many times. In fact, Haven bought me a copy of this book back in January, and I just read it last month (Sorry Haven!). I went into it worried that it would be a dull, typical dystopian, but was pleasantly surprised that it was much darker, complex, and interesting than I had hoped for.
in Ship Breaker, we’re introduced into a world where resources are scarce, Antarctica has melted, cities are drowned, and strange experiments have been done on people, making them not quite people. Nailer, our main character, strips copper wire off of old, grounded oil tankers for sale to big corporations to be recycled. It’s a grim existence, and Nailer is just hoping to get lucky some day and buy his way into another life; but luckily, he gets a chance to do that when he discovers Nita, the lone survivor of a beached ship and one of the wealthy aristocrats that rule this world.
For one, let me say that Bacigalupi’s world in Ship Breaker stands out among the masses of dystopian novels in the world today. While it doesn’t stand out in extremity (I mean, not all books can be about annual tournaments where kids have to kill each other), it is one of the most realistic depictions of the future I’ve come across. Global warming, poverty, tycoon corporations, they’re all in our world today, and that realism is what makes this book chilling, but also immersive.